Gosh, what an awful feeling. After 3 years of tackling issue after issue, I have realized I am dumb. I have trouble justify the work I have been doing so far as anything remotely mathematically scientific, perhaps, it is scientific in terms of usability, but given that it cannot be boxed up and mathematically analyzed leaves me bummed. Perhaps it stems from my mistake 7 years ago in not properly preparing for math curriculum that made me woefully ill prepared to handle and understand proofs coming from a eccentric but enlightened professor. Either way, my issues have culminated into something difficult to grasp, to which I say "Gosh, what an awful feeling."
So where does that leave me? I suppose I need to look at a few angles here, I am definitely doing some useful work in terms of fixing our problem: forming almost direct shortcuts with remote peers. I think that has to be the bottom line from all my research I am doing now (I'll do a follow up post on that following this). More importantly, long term, to fulfill my thirst and desire, I need to discover my own problem or issue and make that a topic of interest. If I don't, I will be stuck in a Ph.D. of mediocracy. That WOULD be a waste.