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Student Entrepreneur: Why is harvest not the focus?

Simon Barker
8/26/2010 01:45 PM EDT

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Salio
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re: Student Entrepreneur: Why is harvest not the focus?
Salio   9/3/2010 2:15:54 AM
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Simon, First of all kudos to you for being able to write a column while doing your PhD and startup on the side. I think you have a very sound approach to the business aspect of a startup. It is always smart to test the waters before diving in. Your project on energy harvesting sounds interesting. I hope you share with us as to how you are managing design systems in high temperature and radiation rich environments. I at least would be very much interested in that. I wish you the best of luck with your startup.

SimonAtEHSense
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re: Student Entrepreneur: Why is harvest not the focus?
SimonAtEHSense   8/27/2010 10:39:35 PM
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Hi Kris, You're certainly right that both are hard work and it is something I will be monitoring carefully as both progress. I think there are times when you just have to grab the idea/opportunity and go for it. I'm also fortunate to have a PhD project that I love and a business opportunity that is so very different that neither are suffering at the moment. Thanks for your input, it's good to hear from someone who has done business and a phd. Simon

SimonAtEHSense
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re: Student Entrepreneur: Why is harvest not the focus?
SimonAtEHSense   8/27/2010 10:30:53 PM
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Hi Luis, Glad to here that you've learned something from my posts. I've learned so much from people doing similar things and it's nice to know that I can pass on my thoughts and adventures in some way. Thanks for commenting Simon

SimonAtEHSense
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re: Student Entrepreneur: Why is harvest not the focus?
SimonAtEHSense   8/27/2010 10:26:00 PM
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Hi Skyhigh, There is some truth in what you say, however I think that the reasons for doing a PhD are individual to each person doing it. So for some people, what you (and many others, some of my friends included) see as not worth it is exactly why they want to do it. One mans poison is another's meat and all that. I choose to do a PhD because I relished the challenge posed by the project. One thing I haven't mentioned in my posts here is that I focus on deploying energy harvesting in hostile environments as an enable technology for resilient systems (above 300degC, radiation rich etc), that adds a certain complexity to the project :) You maybe right about never getting rich off education but my development as an engineer in the last 2 years has been huge, I've had excellent opportunities to present my work at conferences and I've had that rush you get when achieving the result that has been eluding you for months. That feeling is something that money can't buy Cheers Simon

krisi
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re: Student Entrepreneur: Why is harvest not the focus?
krisi   8/27/2010 9:13:34 PM
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Simon, I hope you can pull it off but in principle I don't agree with your approach and would not recommend to anyone...it is very hard to run a successful biz and finish interesting PhD research at the same time! (I did both but at different times ;-)...energy harvesting is a tough topic for a short term biz development but excellent long term perspective, I would put my money and effort on that avenue...good luck, Kris

Luis Sanchez
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re: Student Entrepreneur: Why is harvest not the focus?
Luis Sanchez   8/27/2010 9:10:19 PM
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Carry on Simon. You’re studying your PhD, and making up a company and writing this column. Hey! You really seize the day! I do hope you keep on sharing your adventure and thoughts… I’ve already learned from this column post today. Myself have always think of a hi-tech start-up to become rich of al sudden but… your proposal sound more coherent and seems to approach you to building a good career to yourself since you have to consider your technical’s as well as your business know-how. Carry on… Luis.

SkyhighSG
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re: Student Entrepreneur: Why is harvest not the focus?
SkyhighSG   8/27/2010 7:30:05 PM
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I got a First Class from Imperial, and I never move on to a PhD because it is not worthed it and I was right. Today, time is money. The more time you spent on studying, the poorer you become. Education prevents you from becoming poor, but it was never intended to make you financially richer.

SkyhighSG
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re: Student Entrepreneur: Why is harvest not the focus?
SkyhighSG   8/27/2010 7:26:08 PM
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Some people discovered business opportunities with PhD topics, whereas many don't. Afterall, PhD is merely a research topic, which usually does not yield any short-term market value. If it does, you won't be spending 3 miserable years sweating for a doctorate and publishing papers. You would be better off being an technopreneur and patent it. To make it more miserable, your mentor would have spinned that off somewhere for $$$ than to make you work on a PhD. To make it even more miserable: the global focus is on MegaWatt and energy shortage casted a dark shadow over energy harvesting. It is like, "Why would anyone care for 1 pence, when the world needs 1 million pounds to spin the world around?"

SimonAtEHSense
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re: Student Entrepreneur: Why is harvest not the focus?
SimonAtEHSense   8/27/2010 10:59:45 AM
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I think the list of things I've learnt would cover several posts, but I am looking forward to sharing my experiences so far. Thanks for the input Simon

SimonAtEHSense
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re: Student Entrepreneur: Why is harvest not the focus?
SimonAtEHSense   8/27/2010 10:56:42 AM
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Hi Phil, It is very exciting, new innovations and developments seem to come around very quickly. I don't mind a bloody nose or two so long as I can learn from them! Cheers Simon

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