timothy from the ymmv-and-certainly-will dept.
the_kanzure writes "I'm going to start at a university lab a few days after my high school graduation ceremony. The lab is an eclectic blend of computer science, evolutionary engineering and molecular biology, essentially it's research/development and — best of all — the research is worth something to me and my other pet projects. What I do know of science, tech and research has been gleaned from the internet. The open access research repositories (arxiv, PLoS, etc.) have been a life-saver. But showing up to get real, hard experience is not the same as those late hours into the night spent debugging software. In person, you can't just call up a favorite bash script to open up a few hundred tabs to do some quick research on feasability and past research ... how is this supposed to work — does anybody really get stuff done this way? So I've been wondering how Slashdotters have handled transitioning from learning in front of a screen and a good net connection, to actually showing up and getting stuff done. What's a first day like in a lab? Stories? What's the etiquette? Informal? In programing circles, you can always submit a patch and alternatives, but does this hold here? Is the professor still generally considered the PHB and the lowly undergrads are his minions to carry out his bidding?"
The use of anthropomorphic terminology when dealing with computing systems
is a symptom of professional immaturity.
-- Edsger Dijkstra