On Jargon

Gee Whiz!
There are some students who love to: throw terms that they heard of about only a few days ago; or use some buzzword that they picked up at some seminar. Only when they use jargon or highly complicated terms do they feel that they are really 'graduate' students. When they really get started it's hard to shut them up; they don't make sense to me and also, I suspect, to themselves.
Another variety is the one that has to use the most complicated and sophisticated method to analyze data. Rather than working with the simple, tried and tested tools he will pick up the latest and greatest method and then fumble over the implementation. If he does succeed he will come up with a conclusion that was painfully obvious anyway. Sigh!

In Tales of Horror from Ivory Towers, Karni and Shapiro wrote this satirical piece -
"[The investigation of the Commitee on the Mistreatment of Raw Data - COMRAD ] unmasked such nefarious schemes as employment of third-degree autoregression processes and, in what may be the report's most revolting disclosure, the brutal imposition of third-degree polynomial structures. Maximalist methods also include the use of first and even second differencing, which according to eye witnesses, often reduced the data to a totally unrecognizable state."
Some grad students do need something like a COMRAD. Poor William of Occam.

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