I try to collect some resources here about research, writing and being an academic that I find useful.
- "You and Your Research" by Richard Hamming.
Transcript of an inspirational talk in which Hamming discusses the atmosphere at Bell Labs where he worked with famous researchers like Claude Shannon and John Tukey. He discusses the different traits of researchers who do "great" work — such as courage, drive and commitment.
- "Technology and Courage" by Ivan Sutherland.
Great article by one of the pioneers of human-computer interaction, computer graphics and virtual reality. Sutherland talks about the courage required to do creative, technical work.
- "Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!" by Richard P. Feynman.
One of the funniest and captivating books I ever read. Feynman's stories nicely illustrate one of the important traits of a good scientist: child-like curiosity. If you liked this one, also have a look at the follow-up book 'What Do You Care What Other People Think?'.
- Richard Feynman - No Ordinary Genius.
Interesting BBC documentary from 1993 about Feynman's spirit and his scientific legacy.
- "The Idea Factory: Learning to Think at MIT" by Pepper White.
Insightful book about the life of a grad student at MIT. It gives you a feeling of what it's like to study at a place like MIT. I was quite surprised to find out that the prologue of the book actually takes place in Belgium.
- "The Last Lecture" by Randy Pausch.
Very inspiring and moving talk by the late Carnegie-Mellon University Professor Randy Pausch about really achieving your childhood dreams. Highly recommended, also for people outside of academia.
- "In My Shoes" by César Hidalgo.
A self-recorded video series, showing the day-to-day life of a computer science professor at MIT. Features Hidalgo travelling to promote his Data USA visualization project, showing demos at the MIT Media Lab members event, and features other scholars such as Ben Shneiderman and Steven Pinker.
- Genius Of Britain.
Interesting Channel 4 documentary about the history of the British science including amongst others the discoveries of Hooke, Newton, Watt, Faraday, Kelvin, Turing, Dirac and Watson. Narrated by contemporary British scientists such as Richard Dawkins, Stephen Hawking, David Attenborough, and James Dyson.
General Career Advice
Dealing with Rejection