Tuesday, May 30, 2006
Is genius contagious?
Can associating with geniuses make you smarter? Perhaps a genius by association? I certainly hope so. I talked to a collaborator (and friend) of mine by phone this morning (he's in St. Louis). He's a very, very smart guy. It appears he has figured out some stuff that will completely transform our field. It's the kind of thing that when you hear it you go "Doh! That's so obvious! Why didn't I think of that?" For that very reason - it's simple, obvious and just makes sense - my collaborator will be taking a beating from some of the close-minded, powerful senior people in the field. Scientists are (usually) smart, but they're also people, and when you tell someone that something they've built much of their career around is probably wrong, the reaction often isn't pleasant. It will be an interesting couple of years for my friend.