Tuesday, 28 July 2009

on references and credibility

i never have taken university for granted. and i never took lecturers lightly either. some of them are just amazing, and i am humbled to be in their presence. so far i've met 2 or 3 nobel laureates, which is 2 or 3 more than most people can say. as a little tribute to them:

stephen hawking
- i don't understand most of what he postulates, i'm not an astrophycisit. before anyone points out the obvious 'he didn't win a nobel prize!', yes, i know this. he's still super smart, though, so he still counts. probably the only household scientist name since einstein. met him (more like saw him) once while walking down Trumpington Street.

tim hunt. nobel laureate in physiology 2001. met him at the award-giving ceremony, and i think he gave a lecture at his alma mater, cambridge university, which i may have attended (?) can't exactly remember if it was him i'm thinking about.

ryoji noyori
. another 2001 laureate, this time in chemistry, whom i met at the ceremony. i conversed with him at the dinner party the day before, but his english was a bit muddled. i seem to recall his speech and it was full of technical stuff which, at the time, i could not comprehend. upon asking another attendee, i was told that he was lecturing to a target audience way above our heads.

barry mashall
. saw him at the department, and hoping to speak with him at some point. the thing i remember most so far about him is we were having a talk about referencing our research and the lecturer said 'you have to have proper referencing for your work to be credible. unless you're barry (marshall); when he talks, all of us (fellow lecturers) know it's something credible'.

keep churning those wheels of discovery /salute.

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