Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Science Online 09

I recently attended the ScienceOnline09 conference, formerly known as the NC Science Blogging Conference. Once again, Anton Zuiker and Bora Zivkovic did a phenomenal job organizing the event, which was hosted by Sigma Xi, in RTP. On Thursday night, the festivities started with an Early Bird dinner at the Town Hall Grill, which I will cover in a separate post. Friday's activities included a coffee cupping at Counter Culture Coffee and lab tours, which I did not attend, since I had to work. Friday night, the Women in Science and Engineering had a networking event that included a talk by Rebecca Skloot on her research concerning the origin of HeLa cells, unknowingly donated by Henrietta Lacks in the 50s.

Saturday and Sunday consisted of a day and a half of sessions, which were primarily discussions in a slight "unconference" fashion. I was thrilled that this year there were two sessions on how science relates to art and scientific illustration. Glendon Mellow, pictured above, did a great job leading two of those sessions. There have been so many technological advances in the ten years since I actively painted scientific illustrations, so learning about some of the techniques and possibilities was certainly inspiring.

I attended multiple sessions on writing and writing for hire and was particularly fascinated by Henry Gee's description of life as a senior editor at Nature. I will never have the academic qualifications for such a position, but just knowing more about how such an esteemed journal functions was certainly educational.

That only barely scratches the surface of the variety of things about which I learned. There were four concurrent sessions, so it was often hard to choose which one I wanted to attend. Other sessions I picked included sessions on Open Access, using Wikipedia for annotating genes and and nature blogging. The conference offered a beautiful selection of opportunities to learn.

Photos from ScienceOnline09 on Flickr.
Blog posts from ScienceOnline09.
Tweets from ScienceOnline09.


  1. Always nice to see you! And thank for this post! Looking forward to your review of Town Hall Grill...

  2. Great to meet you! Glad you enjoyed the sessions. Some great ideas being tossed around.

    You can continue being inspired by Jessica Palmer's post on art vs science - an intriguing and fun/creepy video.

    You can see more of Jacqueline Rae Dillard's admirable work at her gallery. She did the cat pictured above.

    What a great weekend, eh?

  3. It was a lovely conference - meetings with other bloggers makes me come over all warm and fuzzy, like.

  4. It was great meeting you at the Conference. I had a great time and the after-glow of it all is visiting everyone's page (like yours) checking them all out.

    Nice post. Have a great week.