Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Research Notes: The Annotated Edition

One of today's tasks is to (metaphorically) pack up my research. I haven't been working on it much (ok, not at all) in the past few weeks, and I'm not going to have a chance to do much with it until several weeks into the semester. I've earned my course release through administrative tasks where the workflow waxes and wanes; we are coming to a busy time.

If I don't keep working on it, I lose the details pretty quickly. I'll forget which things need to be finitey generated for stuff to work. I'll need to keep looking back at the original papers to see what the restrictions are on the degree 0 part. Does P need to be primitive? Or is it prime? Does this apply over any commutative domain or only ones that resemble k[t]?

Yesterday Professor Madison was in my office, and he saw my cryptic notes to myself on my board. He asked about part of it. While I could answer his question, I could not remember why I had written the note.

To avoid losing any progress I made this summer, soon I will have to go through my notes and annotate them (in full English sentences) about what I was doing, what I was hoping to accomplish, and why. I'll have to separate the papers that I have read from those that I've skimmed from those that I'd like to read. I'll further sequester the most useful and write myself a note about what I find so important.

So in addition to sorting, filing, xeroxing, planning, organizing, posting, training, orienting, and meeting, today I will also start writing myself a research roadmap so that when I do get a chance to get back to work, I won't have to start back at the beginning.