Well, it is the first day of the new semester here at USC, and of the new academic year. Whether I like it or not, everything changes today, in terms of my work patterns. I have to squeeze the sprawl of my research (recent posts about that here, here, here, and here) back into a more confined space to make room for other things. Chief among those is my Physics 151 class, where I teach about 90 freshmen (science and engineering majors) the ins and outs (but mostly the ins) of mechanics and thermodynamics. I’ll also be dealing with a number of service and outreach projects that I’ve had on hold for a few months, and, of course, I’ll be serving on a number of committees doing various things in the department and the university at large.
Am I ready? Not entirely. I’m not fully in the right frame of mind, it has to be said. The various research projects I was working on did not get as far as I would have liked, and I could benefit from more of the full-immersion mode that Summer affords in order to follow up lots of ideas and computations. Also, there are entire projects I did not even get to.
But you do what you can, and that’s all there is. I’ve been dumped into a weird time Continue reading ‘Reconfiguring’