64 votes

Single author papers against my advisor's will?

As a department chair, I can say you aren't alone. These situations come up all too often. Please do reach out to your department chair, graduate program director or grad student ombudsperson if your ...
Lance Fortnow's user avatar
28 votes

Single author papers against my advisor's will?

You should switch advisors. Since you are independently writing papers and have a track record, it should be possible to find a fair-minded theory advisor in a different technical area who is willing ...
Chandra Chekuri's user avatar
13 votes
Accepted

How to talk about theory

You may be working with rude elitists, but from my experience, being reluctant to explain technical details depends more on the context than on the person I am talking to. I would usually avoid giving ...
holf's user avatar
  • 2,174
12 votes

Is it beneficial to regularly read papers outside your field?

Understanding papers outside your field can be surprisingly difficult --- every field develops its own specialized terminology and shared background knowledge. A much better advice I once received ...
Aryeh's user avatar
  • 10.5k
10 votes

When should one start looking at existing results in theoretical CS?

Scenario 1: You spend several months tinkering around with colorings, not reading any literature. After many failed attempts you finally discover one that works. Before you can write a paper about it, ...
Andrej Bauer's user avatar
  • 28.9k
10 votes

How to talk about theory

Speaking as a theorist who has occasionally collaborated with systems researchers, mathematical details are usually the very last thing I want to talk about! It's really, really, easy to formalize ...
Neel Krishnaswami's user avatar
9 votes

How to be more "theory-minded"?

Another avenue for interesting exploration is when you're trying to understand the proof of a theorem or lemma. If you dig really deep into the proof to understand exactly how it works (and I don't ...
Suresh Venkat's user avatar
9 votes

How to be more "theory-minded"?

One way I have often found theory problems to work on is by reading about an area and trying to figure out exactly what the state of the art is on a problem. Invariably, some basic questions end up ...
Lev Reyzin's user avatar
  • 12k
8 votes

How to come up with an non-trivial idea in theoretical computer science?

Almost certainly there are lists of open problems in your particular subfield. Find them and read them. Although it's rather unlikely you will be able to solve these problems --- at least right away ...
Jeffrey Shallit's user avatar
8 votes
Accepted

How to be formal while writing papers?

Sure, here's a basic checklist. It would make for a very dry read to actually follow these to the letter, but maybe you should first try to write extremely formally, then see where it's reasonable to ...
usul's user avatar
  • 7,615
8 votes

Single author papers against my advisor's will?

Unfortunately, there is little you can do -- a PhD adviser exercises a great deal of control over the students' careers. I think at this point, you're better off placating her and adding her as a co-...
Aryeh's user avatar
  • 10.5k
7 votes

Is it beneficial to regularly read papers outside your field?

You mention TCS+, and as Aryeh's answer suggests talks and seminars may be a much easier and accessible way to learn about other results. From my point of view (inherently subjective, and not too ...
Clement C.'s user avatar
  • 4,461
7 votes

How to come up with an non-trivial idea in theoretical computer science?

I am going to try and answer this with my limited experience. Disclaimer I am just a senior phd candidate myself. The question you are asking is by no means a trivial one nor are you the only one ...
Konstantinos Koiliaris's user avatar
6 votes

How to be more "theory-minded"?

I agree with Sasho Nikolov's comment: there are two issues here, whose outcomes might influence one another, but they really are two separate issues: writing better proofs, and coming up with good ...
Joshua Grochow's user avatar
5 votes

Is it beneficial to regularly read papers outside your field?

As a grad student make use of the opportunity to take classes outside of your area and outside of CS. You can audit classes or attend a course partially. This is different from reading papers.
Chandra Chekuri's user avatar
5 votes

How to be more "theory-minded"?

Finding good problems to work on is a very difficult task, almost every graduate student struggle with it. That is one of the main reasons you have an adviser who can use his experience and help you ...
Anonymous's user avatar
5 votes

Algebra oriented branch of theoretical computer science

Here are a lot of interesting answer, but nobody mentioned that every language $L \subseteq X^{\ast}$ is naturally associated with a monoid structure via the Nerode-Myhill congruence relation. The ...
StefanH's user avatar
  • 2,077
5 votes

Can concurrency models be compared in terms of some metrics?

There are no metrics, but an excellent discussion of many concurrency models, in Tony Garnock-Jones PhD thesis. See the (HTML version of the) chapter "Approaches to coordination". This ...
gasche's user avatar
  • 2,040
4 votes
Accepted

Formal theory about explaining algorithms

This might not be what you're looking for, but I think this is somewhat covered by the theory of dependent types, specifically intrinsically typed data structures. The idea is that, instead of having ...
Joey Eremondi's user avatar
4 votes

What math courses should I revisit to prepare for a CS Ph.D. (Reinforcement learning and Game Theory)?

Know linear algebra well, say, at the level of Peter Lax' book (start with the first 9 chapters). Also, some basic real analysis and probability theory should be a good place to start.
Joe Shmo's user avatar
  • 301
4 votes

How to come up with an non-trivial idea in theoretical computer science?

It's a generic question so I'm going to give a generic answer: Speak with your academic adviser! You do have one, right? Are you familiar with his/her research projects? Do any of them interest you? ...
Aryeh's user avatar
  • 10.5k
4 votes

How to come up with an non-trivial idea in theoretical computer science?

Here is a suggestion: look for open problems in your field that interests you. Try to reformulate the problem in different representations especially non-standard ones. Try to combine different ideas, ...
Mohammad Al-Turkistany's user avatar
3 votes

How to talk about theory

I really liked Neel's answer, and it inspired me to share some of my experience as a theorist occasionally collaborating with more applied people. One of the most difficult and frustrating stages of ...
Aryeh's user avatar
  • 10.5k
3 votes

What would you advise someone who wants to do research as a hobby?

As already said, it is very difficult due to time, background, money and discipline. Generally, if you are able to make a contribution to the field, in principle you would get a PhD and could work as ...
Raphael Augusto's user avatar
2 votes

When should one start looking at existing results in theoretical CS?

My advice would be to follow the preference of your advisor and start reading the literature. Your advisor knows you and he selected the problem for you. That he lets the decision to you but expresses ...
Hermann Gruber's user avatar
1 vote

Single author papers against my advisor's will?

I am going to make some guesses and give an advice that might seem contradictory to what others have said. Apologies if I am mistaken in my guesses. My intention is to help you overcome not just this ...
Anonymous's user avatar
1 vote

Algebra oriented branch of theoretical computer science

The connections between Algebra and Theoretical Computer Science are very strong. Nic Doye already mentioned Computer Algebra, but he didn't explicitly include the theory of rewriting systems, which ...
Manolito Pérez's user avatar

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