Thursday, August 02, 2007

SciFoo, SciFoolery, Nature, O'Reilly, Google, and More

Well, I am off tomorrow to SciFoo camp. I went last year and wrote a bit about it in what was then my first attempts at blogging. Quick summary - SciFoo is a gathering of people with various connections to science, engineering and technology development. It is organized by the O'Reilly publishers and the Nature Publishing Group and it is, as last year, at Googleplex, the headquarters of a company some people may have heard of.

I confess, normally I pretty much hate going to meetings. I miss my kids. I hate hotels. And many meetings pretty much suck. But last years Scifoo -- it was hands down the most intriguing, interesting, and worthwhile meeting I have ever been to. Needless to say I was pretty happy to get invited back --- and have been eagerly awaiting this for months. Scifoo was great for two main reasons: (1) the people who were there (ranging from relatively unknown but absurdly brilliant graduate students to miscellaneous Nobel laureates and Macarthur winners) and (2) the fact that it is an un-meeting (there are no sessions planned and no real schedule --- just open slots in different sized rooms anyone can sign up for).

I will be blogging from Googleplex as much as I can and will try to let people know about the exciting things I find out there. And unlike last year, when I drove from Davis and picked up someone one the way, I have decided to try and make my trip more carbon neutral by taking the train to Santa Clara which turns out to be only a few miles from the hotel where most people are staying. Plus the train ride will give me time to maybe prepare a presentation which would be better than last year when I made one in about 15 minutes for a session on microbial diversity.

Here are some other bloggy things on scifoo:

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