Monday, May 26, 2008

live from the CSC!

Hi there internet,

I've been running around this week like a headless chicken[1] trying to absorb as much of the science as possible at this year's CSC, albeit unfortunately missing some probably amazing talks. My body can only take so much, you know. I'm actually supposed to run off to a mixer right now, with the enticement of free drinks and food. Hmmm. maybe that's part of why I have been able to go to as many talks as I wanted?

Apart from the colossal disappointment that has been the conference food[2], I have seen a really great time, and actually enjoyed some amazing talks. So, brief recap:

-Daniel Nocera from MIT gave a BADASS talk on global energy needs and solar conversion. That man has guts, probably because he has the science to back it up. The climax of his talk was results that he didn't even present- he just told everyone to watch Science. Nonetheless, he still had some wicked stats on energy; well worth the read:

-Right after that, Greg Scholes gave a pretty sweet talk, though I was distracted by his amazingly hip wardrobe and accent. I swear, I thought I saw him playing bass last year when Interpol played. I've never seen a cardigan/tight pants combo so fashionable with so much quantum to back it up.
- Being from the U of A, I helped with the organization of a symposium, though it was a little out of my subject area. While I respect and admire Chemical Education research, especially as a new TA, I have to admit my expectations were kind of lowish as I missed some other presentations that looked nifty. However, and I should disclose that one of my favourite talks was from my first-year chemistry prof, I was blown away by the session. Teaching is equal parts public speaking, thoughtful communication, personality and some really innovative visualization techniques. It was genuinely exciting to be there as a chemistry major who knows just how much non-chemists dislike the discipline, and the people who are working to fix that. I feel a little guilty for being such a nob in first year. If you happen to be a teaching prof, please please please go check out this links that will definitely merit some further blogging:
Anyway, I'll try to post some more with cool things I encountered. Infiniflux, forever!

From your chemistry pal,

[1]. I kid you not, I typed that phrase into the google with no knowledge of the random weirdness that resulted.

[2]. Not including the free food at this mixer, but the general lack of food at coffee breaks and poster sessions has made me grumpy. I won't name any names (I guess apart from linking to the conference page, whoops), but if you are ever going to a major conference here in Edmonton, make sure to pack a lunch.


Anonymous said...

Just so you know, your CSC link is broken in the 3rd line. I googled it to find out what it was though - fun stuff.

Have a good time.

Took a glance at the SciVee link. Good idea, but video takes too much work to do regularly...

Joel Kelly said...

whoops. thanks for letting me know.

I think the SciVee site makes it easier to do video, though. It's almost like putting together a powerpoint.

I'd worry for myself about finding a good journal for my field that's also open access, first.

katiedid said...

Not related to the Chemistry but have you ever seen a chicken run around with its head cut off? One of the strangest sights I've ever seen...

Joel Kelly said...

Youtube confirms you are correct. That is really weird. also very gross.