Wee Siong Goh
- Graduate Student
- Original Country: Singapore
- Laboratory: Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, NY, USA
- When: June 2011
We had agreed to meet one evening, and he was supposed to be the last of the day. Usually, I need 5 to 15 minutes to make a picture. It depends on if I already know the person, and on what she or he knows about my project. But with "Sho" (his friends call him like that), things were a bit slower. First, we had to recharge and install the battery. Which, in the end, took less time than the hunt for the drumsticks. We had one, but the other stubbornly played hide and seek with us, and I have to admit that it won. What Sho holds in his left hand is really a wooden spoon…
And when I think about it, it suits him quite well. Sho comes from Singapore, where the national sport is talking about food, and I have to admit that people there eat extremely well. I had the pleasure to visit, to meet him and other friends living there, and they gave me a grand tour in a “gastronomical” number of restaurants, big and small, each as delicious as the other.
Sho is curious of everything. During the summer of 2015, he came to visit when I was in Lyon. He wanted to see absolutely everything, from the Mont Saint-Michel (what a disappointment when he discovered that it was in fact at the other end of France) to the ancient traboules of Lyon, to the most typical bouchons restaurants, where he insisted to taste frog legs and snails.
Assaf Gordon, « Gordy »
- A Very Cool Guy
- Original Country: Israel
- Laboratory: Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory
- When: January 2011
I met Assaf Gordon for the first time at the door of my studio, the day of the photo session. No sooner had he crossed the step that he announced he could not be part of the project, having no PhD. “It doesn’t matter. I will say you’re a graduate student,” I said. He replied that he is not a graduate student. I persisted and suggested that, in this case, I would write he is an undergraduate student. He then objected that he is not an undergraduate, and, to put the things more plainly, does not have a diploma. Seeing my blank stare, “Gordy” explained that he was an IT engineer. One might think he takes care of systems and networks… but not really. In fact, his domain is bioinformatics. Later, when I mentioned his name to graduate bioinformaticians, I discovered that he is not just a mere IT engineer. He is the grand master of Linux (hence the penguin) and the term “grand master” is not an exaggeration. He possesses this rare quality of being able to perfectly understand what the members of his team are trying to achieve and transcribe it into a computing language. He was the one towards whom the IT specialists of the lab, all of them holding degrees from prestigious universities, turned when they had run out of options. One of the things I have always found funny: although he is THE reference in computing science and spends innumerable hours in front of his screen, you will not find him on a social network. The virtual universe is not for him, and he is much more inclined to talk about woodworking than to discuss computers. Somebody who would not know about his talents could easily mistake him for a traveler from another century.
He is a man of absolute kindness and great humanity. I am very grateful for the help he gave me in solving some of the problems I encountered on the second version of my website.
He left a great void behind when he departed from Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory for another great and prestigious institution.