Thursday, February 28, 2013

Phil's two cents on blogging

Crank that (Soulja Boy)
Phil Baran, battling a bottle (Feb. 2013).

        One of my colleagues had this to say about blogs: "Never before have so many people with so little to say said so much to so few…"  I think there are probably only a few exceptions to that in chemistry (Derek Lowe's blog being an example). Over the years I have vaguely followed some of them, mostly through my students or through being occasionally contacted by someone that runs a blog. Practically all of my colleagues roll their eyes the minute the word "blog" is uttered for a variety of largely justified reasons.  But times are clearly changing. I'm not on Facebook, linked in, I don't tweet or chirp, and I don't have time for blogs. I truly don't think I am interesting enough or important that people would care what I think or do every day. And, I barely have time to breathe these days with commitments piling up and a young family.  But, I find my students and postdocs to be incredibly interesting and talented. They are brilliant artists, comedians, and wonderful human beings. On top of that they are deeply passionate about chemistry. And they generally have a lot of free time :) I think the world should know them and their inspiring stories - scientific or otherwise - without having to hide behind a cloak of anonymity with the fear that I might find out they are "one of those bloggers".

        Last year I was at a dinner symposium where EJ Corey gave a brilliant impromptu talk before a toast. It was a captivating speech all about how things have rapidly changed over the span of his 80+ years. The take home message was that change is natural and you can either embrace it and adapt or be left behind. I'm no fortune teller but it is clear to me that blogging is here to stay and is gathering momentum.  The purpose of this blog is to give you a no holds barred, behind the scenes look into our science.

        This blog will, hopefully, be like an open flask.

--Phil

8 comments:

  1. I wonder if a recent BlogSyn discussion on IBX-promoted oxidation reproducibility was the last drop...

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    1. Last drop? Certainly. But the idea has been discussed among people in our lab previously in various forms...

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  2. Welcome, folks.

    Prof. Baran's responsiveness to See Arr Oh and BlogSyn is a model for collaboration in the future.

    Best wishes, Chemjobber

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  3. Congrats on the new digs! Can't wait to see more...

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  4. And nice to have another chem blog online. Cheers.

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  5. I think if you were playing with the idea for a while and blogsyn was the last drop it's pretty cool. And O think it will be interesting to watch the development of a blog from a research lab, it can be very enriching and a good complement to the blogs made by individuals abut their adventures on chemistry or special topics.

    CHEERS !

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  6. Glad to see this - and thanks for the kind words. I'll put up a link soon - my blogroll needs a wholesale revision, anyway, and this is as good a prompting as any!

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  7. Is it just me, or does it look like Phil's not wearing a glove on his right hand in this picture? Safety first!

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