31 December 2003

2003: So long, baby!

The major task I've spending the last few days working with people on the revisions to the new redesigned website for the International Society for Neuroethology. If you click on the link and see a page with a red band down the left, that's the old site; the new site should be up later today or tomorrow.

You can't help but to be reflective on the last day of the year. As much for my own mental health as anything, here's a recap of some of the things I did this year besides goofing off.

Teaching: I taught my new class, Neurobiology (BIOL3310) the first time in the spring, and again in fall. Also had my first independent study students and Honours students. Got one small grant for a teaching technology pilot project.

Research: Wrote three external grant applications: two were rejected and one had the program killed before I could submit the letter. Got one small grants from within UTPA. Got one of my manuscripts from my post-doc in Australia accepted and in the pipeline for publication next year.

Service: Organized a symposium for the annual Animal Behavior Society meeting. Took over as chair of the Search Committee, and managed to attract somewhat more and better applicants than we had in previous years. And, as noted above, oversaw the redesign of neuroethology.org.

And is that enough? No! In 2004, I am really going to have to pick up the pace for getting grants and getting publications if I want to keep this job. Which I do. Most of the time.

29 December 2003

Article progress


I received some paperwork from the publisher in the U.K. for my most recent article today. Of course, the term "paperwork" is almost archaic now, since it arrived as a set of PDF files. But I did still have to use paper, as they required a signature. I had to print the files, sign them, then fax them back to the publisher.

This is the first paper that I've been completely responsible for getting it through. For my previous papers, I was working with a co-author, my supervisor for the work. It'll be interesting to see the process more close at hand. It'll also be the first paper I've published in a while (ugh -- not good), and I'm curious to see how email and the web are used in the publishing process.

25 December 2003

Happy holidays


No research today or work or trips to uni today. For the first time in a long while.

Merry Christmas.

Tomorrow, I'm back to writing my next NSF grant.

23 December 2003

22 December 2003

Even when it's cool, it's hot...


One of the things I dislike about my job is that it is located in a place that feels hot almost all the time. And now, close to Christmas, where the temperature outside is actually rather pleasant, the building I'm working in is really unpleasantly warm. The air conditioning is off. I even wonder if the heat is actually on?

Anyway, I spent much of the day dealing with committee business. On the one Search hand, I'm gearing up to bring in eight job candidates for campus visits in February. That's two per week, every week, for a month. On the Web hand, I'm working closely with a web design firm to develop a new look for the website for the International Society for Neuroethology, which should be up in the new year.

Still have lab equipment that I need to get running. Still have manuscripts to prepare. Still have grants to write. Unfortunately, a lot of those tasks kind of rely on other people being available to do their work, and at this time of year, that seems to be a tall order.

I wonder if people who know the physical act of juggling are any better than regular folks at juggling jobs?

16 December 2003

Coming up for air


Where have I been, might you ask? Nowhere special -- just very busy. Several things have happened on the research front since we last chatted.

First, the good news. I've got another paper from my work in Australia accepted and on its way into print. This one should see the light of day in Arthropod Structure & Development next year.

Then, the bad news. My second attempt to be allowed to write a proposal for the Whitehall Foundation was rejected.