Day 3: Progressby Kamala Diefenthaler on 01/18/12
Today I reaped the benefits of yesterday's frustration. I had a quick chat with my advisor this morning. Because of all the seemingly worthless articles I read, I knew exactly what he was talking about.
I worked for about 2 hours then took a nap. When I woke up the problem had worked itself out. After about 20 minutes of calculations, I was correct! When my advisor mentioned variational formulation, I immediately thought of a process like 'take the derivative'. However, variational formulation is just a weaker form of a property. Also the discrete inner product I am using is a functional (duh), so the pages of meaningless integrals now relate to my problem. This was HUGE for me. It has been almost a year since I have made any real progress. It was a small step, but very meaningful.
I was in "the dip" and debated quitting. This revelation is my first step out; I truly believe I can finish my PhD while in China. With this momentum I figured out another small piece, and I have one brewing in the back of my mind.