Fish-food for thought
Imagine yourself on a boat, a raft actually, venturing out into the ocean, and picture that you arrive at a fork in your water-world path; one way the ocean seems to turn red, its crimson waters infested with blood-thirsty beasts, but the other way looks brilliant blue - peaceful, quiet and filled with unicorns, and certainly no risk to life. Which way would you go?
A couple of years ago, I stepped into my current field. It started with an internship, then a graduation project and now it is the subject of my PhD research. At the onset itself, I knew this was the red ocean: crowded, competitive and certainly thriving. It’s what journals term 'Hot Topic' and hundreds of hot articles are churned out every month by the dwellers of the red ocean.
On the bright side, there is enormous power in collective knowledge and therefore red ocean creatures don’t paddle, they dart, sniffing out problems and solving them in the blink of an eye. But of course, one must always keep up and be on his toes, and that is indeed among the motivations for me being here. Red is the only ocean I’ve known and so far it’s fun.
On the other hand, although I’ve never entered a blue-ocean, I can imagine it is very calm. You may be allowed to row about gently, somewhat aimlessly, searching for the end where the sky meets the sea. Until you hit gold. There is great merit in being the first anywhere, even accidentally (read: Columbus), and once there, attracting attention is natural and the treasures always draw the settlers. The rest is the future.
Bottom-line is that all oceans are eventually red but some oceans are more red than others. The question is if you’d like a taste of the blue? Fish-food for thought!
*based on conversations and inherited wisdom