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Science is like Star Trek

Young researchers in the engineering sciences should resist the temptation to do only applied research but rather establish a fruitful interaction between fundamental and applied work. After all, our mission in academia is to “explore strange new worlds, … to boldly go where no one has gone before.”

WIRED: Samira Hayat about drones

The autonomous drone system developed by Lakeside Labs and U Klagenfurt is one of «15 novel ideas for 2015» featured by the WIRED magazine. Max Biederbeck interviewed Samira Hayat, PhD student in the research team. Here are some extracts from this interview translated into English. Photos by Gene Glover. I learned at the dentist what people think about my work. The scene took place during my last visit home to Pakistan. My father had accompanied me to the doctor’s office, and while I was treated, he began to tell. “My daughter does research in Europe,” he told the dentist. “At a university in Austria, and she works with drones.” When the dentist heard the last word, he played his surprise with a laugh and said, “I hope she does not work for the Bad.” Phrases like these accompany my work. With my chosen profession, I’ve broken some taboos. My friends at home gave me the nickname of “rebel.” It really was a daily struggle: A Pakistani woman who is an engineer and researcher at drones; …