Luke Skarth-Hayley

Coder, Writer, Researcher

Into the PhD

2018 has been a weird year.

My original plan on finishing my MSc CompSci was to move from IT into software development, a sideways shuffle.

I did that, but software development (or at least the role I ended up in) was not quite what I'd hoped for.

Cue a festive border crossing into 2018 where I was in a hotel in Cambridge, suspended in some non-space as I reassessed.

I recalled the Horizon CDT programme at the University of Nottingham, and applied.

January through April I went through the interview process, and found myself accepted.

Pinch me.

Then I found myself somewhat at a loss. I had this wonderful thing waiting for me in the distance, but what was I doing now? I applied for temporary lecturing positions, and got them. I taught design students, computer science students, was briefly in discussions with a department about designing an HTML/JS form for them, and taught workshops to postgrads then wound up with a temping research associate position. Doing mental calisthenics for that distant view, I guess.

I honestly never saw myself following this path, but I guess that's the point. Rarely do we end up where we'd planned or thought.

So here I am, up in it, 19 days until I start. I am deeply grateful and excited to be starting the Horizon programme, and cannot quite believe how quickly it has come.

Once I've got myself settled I will endeavour to talk about my journey, what I'm working on, etc.

Sidenote: I've switched the site around a bit, dark theme, reorganised a bit. Now I've kicked the tires on my publishing toolchain, I'll look to write a few more things. I'm probably going to be deeply unacademic and half-formed here, as a rest from the rigour I'll be applying elsewhere, so do forgive rambles, random, and rather rubbish writing. But email me, @ me or whatever, always happy to share thoughts and discuss.