Friday, August 1, 2008

Lessons I learned this week

1.  I have come to an incredibly liberating conclusion.  About 50% of all experiments are not going to work.  Maybe the technique is flawed, maybe there is something wrong with the reagents, maybe there is human error; for whatever reason, it just isn't going to work.  This is nothing to get depressed about.  There are plenty more experiments to do.  Most of the time these dead experiments don't even deserve trouble-shooting: just drop it and move on; try something else.  Hey, there's a 50% chance it'll work!

2.  The more work you do the more work there is to be done.  This can be good and bad.  Good because you always stay busy, keep momentum going, and increase your chances of success.  Bad because you work longer and longer hours, feel stressed that you will forget to do something, feel pressure to get/stay organized, feel overwhelmed.  Then again its good because you quit obsessing about small details and just get stuff done, actually start get organized, figure out ways to be more efficient.  All this is great until you realize that its 9:30pm on Friday evening and you are still at work...and are planning your day at work tomorrow.

3.  Is there a 3..?  Oh yes: I love writing!  I keep forgetting that... 

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