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24 July 2003 @ 02:06 pm
"Professors" and "scientific research"  
What do you think, what is the main responsibility of a University professor?
- "To make a scientific research"?
- Wrong. The main responsibility of a University professor is to administer researches of the post-graduate students.

Today I met Raj Bhatnagar, professor of University of Cincinnati. Raj conducts research in Artificial Intelligence field. When I tried to talk with him about Artificial Intelligence Development he wasn’t interested in my ideas about AI. But he was quite effective in administrative issues:
- Raj asked me what exactly am I going to do. I answered that I want to develop True Artificial Intelligence System. But Raj expected answer in different direction.
- Raj asked me "are you going to make dissertation"? I said that I didn’t think about it and asked to explain some details.
- Raj explained that if I want to make dissertation then I should:
1. Take GRA exam (1-2 months of preparations).
2. In October with GRA results come to him again and select specific subject for my dissertation.
3. During December 2003 - April 2004 "research funds" will be distributed, so I may get tuition and, may be, scholarship (tuition is money for university; scholarship is money for me).
4. Since August 2004 I may start dissertation research.

I imagined picture how do I wait 1 year for starting the research… and asked Raj about his current AI projects. Raj answered that his team (post-graduate students) work on:
- Distributed Data Mining.
- Analysis of human’s cognitive process.
- System for classification of technical information.

From my point of view first dissertation is not a science problem at all. "Distributed Data Mining" looks like classical task for a database software developer. Moreover, I consider this problem as weakly related to an Artificial Intelligence subject.

So, I asked Raj about two last topics ("cognitive process" and "information classification"). I even mentioned that I have some ideas about these topics.
But university professors are interested in administration process, not in the research itself. So Raj neither asked me about my ideas nor explained details about these project. Instead he proposed to send me the papers (with details about the research).

Resume: Professors don’t make science research by themselves: they are too busy for it. Instead professors do important part of the job: administration of the research process.
 
 
 
Maxhobober on July 24th, 2003 07:43 pm (UTC)
It's normal. Raj is not impressed by your conception of "True AI".
Because there are not money on your way for him :)
He don't need AI, he need money.

(Anonymous) on July 30th, 2003 02:11 am (UTC)
Problem with these professors is they have a closed mind and think they know it all and know it better. Their minds are generally closed based on the ideas they teach/read/hear (like computers will never be able to think or that computers will never feel emotions). They probably do not think True AI is possible (I believe it is).

I have recently started work on trying to come up with "True AI". I may spend the next 30 years and fail but i will try. Someone someday will succeed. Dont give up.

Ameya
Dennis Gorelikdennisgorelik on July 30th, 2003 06:42 am (UTC)
Ameya, could you describe your ideas about building AI?

BTW, do you have LJ login or email?