Just barely hanging out there. Today was lots of serious fun and intellectual challenges at the RecSys 2007 Doctoral Consortium . Interestingly, all the participants came from lots of different backgrounds from computer science, information retrieval to me from education. I think the diversity of backgrounds and focuses of studies represent the growth of the Field of Recommenders, it's not only about the best algorithm anymore, but a plethora of questions around.
Anyway, being somewhat a newbie here (yeah, I do not know all the people or study areas here, very eye opening!), it makes me think that all the PhD students should be exposed to the question " If you were to have dinner next to a main researcher in Google/Yahoo/or any other big name, what would you want to talk about?".
Well, as it happens to be, I never thought of that before. Neither was I prepped for that by my study programme. Nevertheless, I just spent my dinner next to Krishna Bharat, you know, the guy who greated Google News, nothing less, nothing more. Probably tomorrow I'll have like ten things I want to ask from him with no chance to get his attention anymore.
Bottom line: it is not only about the 1 minute elevator pitch, but about the life and such in general.