Probably the biggest problem I’ve had in my “early career mathematician” life is that I do too many things. I wrote a bit already about my over-functioning issues in an older post. In part, this is how I have always been. I was the kid who tried to get A’s in school at the same time as taking piano, ballet, and musical theory lessons and playing (poorly) in the volleyball team. Sometimes, doing all these things keeps me activated, like knowing I don’t have much time is good for getting things done. The problem with math research is that it is not something you can just get done. It requires creativity and long periods of time where your full attention is devoted to a problem. Today, a friend of mine shared a blog post that made me think a bit harder about something I suspect needs to be done more often (at least in my case), which is to say no.
This is not a post about psychiatry (although this link Jordan Ellenberg shared recently makes me think I could use some therapy, and it IS Sigmund Freud‘s birthday today), but rather about the benefits of giving talks in mathematics: they help your research, your chances of getting a job, and with general networking. Continue reading
As many of you may have heard, Venezuela has just been through (and may still be going through) a very close and contested presidential election. The country is evenly divided in two pieces (which president-elect Maduro described as “two halves, but one is bigger”). As is common with an election like this, both sides can become very emotional and easily manipulated by all sorts of false information. In this post, I will share a couple of examples (one from each side of the political spectrum) of mathematical manipulation that struck me as good reasons why having critical quantitative thinking is so important.