Trying to refute the ancient, nostalgic German articles on science and me, by playing the cool and sober professional.

Profession Or True Calling? Reasonable Questions or Musings Just Uncalled-For?

(elkement. Created: 2008-03-17. Tags: Science, Career, Profession, Calling. German Version.)

I have studied physics and worked in Research & Development for some years before I turned to IT. I cannot call myself a professional scientist any more though I have been involved in science / the scientific community here and then.

Natural sciences, physics and mathematics in particular are what I consider to be the core of all sciences. The way of thinking that I learned to apply to theoretical and real-world problems during my studies still influences the way I tackle any problem.

These are the results of my dedication to science:

So I do still love the following:

  • Clarity and precision, 0 or 1, yes or no.
  • Translating real-world problems to formal, self-consistent, preferred mathematical representations.
  • Really understanding what I am talking about as a result of theoretical investigations, intensive learning and hands-on experience.

As a logical consequence I am not overly tolerant when it comes to

  • So-called politically correct way to convey facts by adding lengthy explanations, most often as a result of too much soft skill centered psychological training (Well, I think we should probably change the warp core threshold value before the spaceship crashes - but only if you don't mind and this does not hurt your feelings too much)
  • Vague, inexact theories of life, the universe and everything, especially if these theories are inherently inconsistent.
  • Having to listen to somebody explaining (for example) quantum physics to me if this person has read one popular science book on the subject.

Observatories near Teide, Spain's highest mountain. XMas and New Year 2004/2005 in Teneriffa: Thinking about the future, science, and everything.

Personal website of Elke Stangl, Zagersdorf, Austria, c/o punktwissen.
elkement [at] subversiv [dot] at.