Category Archives: SBC-NC’08

Science Blogging Conference – Videos and essential blog posts

[Bumped up to make it easier for me to update, and links placed under the fold so not to clutter the front page]
Here’s a collection of blog posts written during the Science Blogging Conference (more will be added over the next couple of days as people write their posts after recovering from travel) and the collection of video recordings of several sessions. Also, check out all the other action from today….

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So, how was it for you?

If you have not done it yet, please fill a brief questionnaire about your experience at the Science Blogging Conference. We will meet in a couple of weeks to analyze how it went and to start brainstorming the ways we can make the next conference even better.
So far, we received 46 responses through that form and have been reading them carefully. One of the responders was not even there – he fully participated in the proceedings online, watching the streaming videos and participating in chatrooms in real time, then blogging about it. I wish there was a way to send locopops – the high point of the conference for some people, according to the survey – via internet (it’s a set of tubes, after all, so what could be easier, right?) to all of those who followed the meeting virtually. Imagine just logging in, choosing the flavor (spicy Mexican chocolate, yum!) and clicking “Send” and, voila, the popsicle appears from a little chute on the side of your computer!
BTW, I have been dutifully updating the Blog and Media coverage page on the wiki, so you can see what people are saying about the conference. Several sessions are described in detail, there are several videos and screencasts, and some conversations started at the meeting are now continuing on blogs.

SBC – the Grand Opening

Brian Russell recorded some sessions at the Conference and is now putting them up on Blip.TV. Here is the first clip, the very beginning of the Conference on Saturday:

SciBlings at the Conference

There is something about being on that is different – and bigger – than just being a science blogger on a prominent platform. Something that others are still trying to figure out and emulate. And that is the friendship that we have all developed between us. We are like a big family – we call each other SciBlings, after all. Whenever we travel, we try to meet. Although we are spread all around the USA, as well as Canada, Australia, the U.K., and Sweden, we have been quite successful at meeting each other in Real Life.
The Science Blogging Conference was a great excuse for meeting each other – and there were 20 of us there. This makes this meeting the Vice-Champion of SciBling gatherings, only bested by last August’s Big SciBling Meetup in New Tork City, which boasted 35 sciencebloggers. And we’ll keep doing it. Here are the SciBlings who made it to North Carolina this past weekend:
Martin Rundkvist
Janet Stemwedel
Tara Smith
Dave Munger
Peter Etnoyer
Kevin Zelnio
Sheril Kirshenbaum
Chris Mooney
James Hrynyshyn
Brian Switek
Evil Monkey
Sciencewoman (and Minnow)
Virginia Hughes
Shelley Batts
Karen Ventii
Jennifer Jacquet
Abel PharmBoy
Josh Rosenau
Suzanne Franks
…and me.
Go here to see our group shot!

Student Blogging

During the Student blogging panel–from K to Ph D at the Conference (actually, the session I enjoyed the best of all – and that is not easy as all the sessions were fantastic), a point came up about the way universities are slowly changing their attitudes toward students blogging. Actually, one of the panelists, Sarah Wallace, is a direct beneficiary of a recent 180-degrees turn by Duke University. Instead of looking askance at student blogging, Duke is now actively encouraging students to write blogs about their research, providing them with the platform and tech support and faculty guidance.
So, it is nice to see that another batch of Duke students is blogging right now – from Hawaii – Nicholas School Students Visit Hawaii’s Marine National Monument:

A group of our Master of Environmental Management students, professors Andy Read and Dave Johnston, and environmental journalist Eugene Liden are exploring Papahanaumokuakea, America’s largest marine wilderness, through Jan. 25. As they make their way through the Northwestern Hawaiian islands, they will be sending back regular blog posts and photos about what they are learning. They also are videotaping the experience, and we will make clips available soon after the trip. I thought you might want to check out the site and share it if you think people in your area might be interested. So far they have spent three days in Oahu, and yesterday they flew to Midway and should post from there by tomorrow.

Check them out – the new generation of science bloggers is coming up! And they are good!

SBC – online participation

Through blog posts, via e-mail, and via our feedback form (have you filled it yet?) we are already getting tons of feedback on the way Conference ran, what was good about it, what not so much, and what can be done differently next time. We are carefully reading all of it and will certainly address all of your feedback as we start organizing the 3rd meeting (give us a week or so to rest, will ya, please?!).
One of the things that we get a lot is feedback from the people who were not able to attend in physical space and were very happy we made it possible to participate from the distance (see this comment thread for one example). A number of people, both those at the site and those far away, used the variety of online tools to participate.
Thanks to Tola Oguntoyinbo of Sonecast for building the conference Commons a one-stop shopping site for all things related to the Conference. Now that the meeting is over, do not delete that bookmark yet! The site will remain live over the next year, getting built more and more – definitely a place to go to keep up with the discussion on science blogging, on science in North Carolina and the blogging events in the Triangle.
While some of the audio, video and screencast recordings are being put online now (and see the growing number of photographs here and here and here), real Hit Of The Day was live streaming video with attached chatrooms which allowed the off-site participants to comment and ask questions in real time. Jason set up one of those for the Real-time blogging in Marine Sciences session. Karen did the same for the Gender and Race in science: online and offline session.
But, real kudos go to Wayne Sutton who provided real-time video streaming and chat for several sessions, handled the cameras (ably assisted by Brian Russell), made sure that at least some questions from the chatrooms got asked during the sessions and all sorts of other odds and ends on the technical aspects of hosting a conference and making sure everything went smoothly. Click on his name up there and visit his blog – he also interviewed several organizers and participants of the conference and posted the videos of the interviews (very, very cool interviews!). Say Hello and Thank you while there (image of Wayne from Flickr, by ‘base10’):

SBC – Science Blogging Ethics wiki

During the Science Blogging Ethics session at the Conference, there was a discussion of a possible Science-bloggers code of ethics, or at least a community-built set of guidelines for best practices and responsible conduct on science blogs. It was suggested that the best way to make such a set of guidelines would be on a wiki. So, Janet has built the Science Blogging Ethics Wiki and you should all help build it over time.