Journeys of an Experimental Philosopher
My first conference of 2014! Actually my first proper conference since IMSC Japan 2012! My first conference in the Netherlands! Many "firsts" were attributed to the 50th Annual Meeting of the Dutch Society for Mass Spectrometry (NVMS - Nederlandse Vereniging voor Massaspectrometrie) which I attended with the rest of our group (BIMS – Biomolecular Imaging Mass Spectrometry) in Kerkrade between 13th-15th April.
This book caught my attention recently in a bookstore in Amsterdam. Already the title is somehow provocative and even though I don’t identify myself with it at all, I did not hesitate a while to add this piece to my "brainy bookcase". The book promised to explain why the brain and different chemical processes within it form our personalities.
I have not been following cyclocross this season very much. I got absorbed by triathlon and instead of watching cycloX world cup races, I became an eager consumer of videos about swimming and tri-transition techniques. I realized that the 2014 World Championship takes place in the Netherlands just a few days before the actual racing weekend. When I discovered that the double world X champion Zdeněk Štybar is also going to compete, I did not hesitate a second and went to get myself a ticket for the Sunday’s Men Elite Race.
No other organ has excited the interest of scientists and philosophers as much as the brain. The long history of the brain research passed through many stages with different beliefs and views on what brain actually is, how it looks like, and how it works. The brain is at present understood as a biological computer, which operates and controls the whole body and the processes within. The brain research still attracts enormous attention. Desire to construct a computer with the capabilities of the human brain is strongly accented. Other research aims at brain pathophysiology and understanding of a mechanism of various nervous tissue related diseases. The latter takes the advantage of different imaging and scanning techniques which are capable to display distinct physiological and anatomical features of the brain.
I am officially an idealist. I know it and I am not giving this up. I have heard many times "The sooner you lose the illusions about (your) life the better." And I would always shout out loud in disagreement! Yes, being an idealist sometimes fucking hurts… But it also offers infinite Joy & Love & Enthusiasm. No matter how hard you get kicked one day, you can fly the other. And that’s worth all the possible pain or disappointment!
My race bike was standing still in my room when the summer got already over its peak this year. And I realized that not taking the rocket out would be a mortal sin. But since I had a significant lack of sport motivation by that time I knew I wouldn’t break the wall of laziness just on my own. Therefore I started looking for a cycling group that would take my ass out on bike. And I found one: Cyclodammers. When I joined the group at the beginning of August, I had no clue what will this juncture develop in just a few months later.
The first version of the following text was actually created quite shortly after my arrival from the Mass Spectrometry School in Italy in September. It took me, however, another a few weeks to tweak it for the blog. Lack of time for nothing else but the research in the past month lead to a significant blogging deficit. Anyway, sit down and relax, the first load of summarized FAQs about Mass Spectrometry Imaging is about to knock ur socks off :)
I am currently working at the AMOLF Institute in Amsterdam. AMOLF is partly financed by FOM (Foundation for Fundamental Research on Matter), a Dutch organization that "promotes, co-ordinates and finances fundamental physics research in the Netherlands". As a new PhD student I took part in a course named "Taking Charge of Your PhD project", which is compulsory for all PhD-student fellows and is paid for by FOM. The following text summarizes the two-day course & my interpretation of the take home messages.
Here I am with yet another post within the topic "pharmacy and overseas". What is the foreign prestige of the Faculty of Pharmacy at the Charles University in Prague? Does a graduate have a chance to find a job outside of the Czech Republic? Again, a broad topic which is being looked at from the perspective of a scientist.