Monday, October 5, 2020

Sciencing in times of Corona

 I’m trying to get a science done. This is anything from getting grant proposals set up to telescope time proposals, helping students do their science projects and trying to finish the occasional paper myself. 

Let’s admit to ourselves at least here that this is very likely more than we could finish in a good year. And this is not a good year. 

Yet we feel that as a field, or tenure committee or whatever, there is a nonzero chance collective amnesia sets in and we all fear of being labeled “unproductive”. For 2020 and 2021 (this is going to last longer and take time to recover...). 

S lets see what I have in the hopper:

8 scientific papers at 50+% complete. Many almost ready to go to coauthors or with comments or referee reports. Yeah. That should go down. That’s too many. I should finish some. But...

5 student projects that could/should be papers. That’ll take more work but is very beneficial to these students. I should get cracking on those. But they are overwhelmed and so am I. 

I agreed to write a book a few months ago. There is a draft. For me it’s a challenge to stop writing about certain things apparently. Still. Need to wrap that up. 

NSF Astronomy & Astrophysics grant proposals. These are huge with lots of moving parts. Stressful to pull together and shepherd through the University and NSF bureaucracies. I’ve...Eh... started. 

Students count on me to get them funding for their phds. And support undergrads. Oh and myself and my family. Summer salary. Eish. 

The James Webb Space Telescope proposals are due on November 24. In a giant “don’t care” by this project they just put it on the last day of just about everyone’s classes. May as well write “for Ivy League use only” on the side of this thing. But I’m stubborn so... yeah preparing some. 

This is not only hard. This is functionally impossible. So time to pair down, punt and of course “good enough” all of this. 

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