For a long time I’ve been quite cynical even hostile to my area. I believe most of the papers in my area are garbage. They at best make epsilon improvement. Only 5-10 percent are truly original.
Yet people still devote tremendous amount time in this meaningless game. For juniors I understand: this game is the path to power and security. But I have little respect to the tenured ones who still keep producing garbage, the garbage even themselves do not believe in
But unless the academic tenure system collapses, not much will change. The logic is quite simple: if you don’t want to play this game, just quite; there are hundred part-time, adjuncts dying for a permanent, tenure-track spot.
Complaints aside, the tenured are still required to produce to justify their unreasonable pay (yes, i believe most of US academics are overpaid), which never make sense if only justified by teaching alone.
Another justification for playing this useless game is to help students and juniors, a more sensible course. Currently I am involved in four projects with four juniors. Among them, AO is most mature and motivated one. He initiates and takes the responsibility. I only need to discuss and do the final write up. The workload is about a week.
KK needs more guidance. For TQ2, he will email me the computation part. Then I need to finalize it. There are 3 papers to read for the literature review part.
The most troubling one is PL. He wants the result but does not want to work. Instead, he recruit another guy from his previous school. I haven’t heard from him since mid-December. But I am in no hurry: after all, it is him, not me, who needs the paper out so badly. He is working on the extension now. Once that is done, he needs to rework the numerical part two. The writing will be a pain. Expect 1-2 weeks’ work.