Friday, June 01, 2007

Happy Crappy Research

Research can be painstaking and boring. Tedious. Repetitive. But sometimes things happen to upset the balance. Why do they all happen at once? Today I experienced a major happy/crappy collision. See below for a summary.

I found out earlier today that an abstract I submitted to a conference next fall has been accepted. Yippee! This is good news, especially because it's important to me to try to get some recognition in this area. I might soon be applying for an open position in this obscure sub-field, so the more I have, the better.

I found out that another paper was accepted at this conference. Having only seen the abstract, this paper appears to be MY PROPOSED DISSERTATION. Yes, this abstract shares my dependent variable of interest, my proposed dataset, AND something seemingly similar to my independent variables of interest. The only catch here is: I DID NOT WRITE THIS ABSTRACT. Panic mode has set in and I have already started making calls to my minions to find out just what the heck is going on. For any of you non academics, it's important to know that we live by a few basic rules including this one: 1. If you do it, you want to do it first. If you don't do it first you look like a chump who can't think of something original. And if you aren't original, why are you an academic?

I'll keep everybody posted as this develops....

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