I stared writing this post while sitting in one of the lecture rooms at the Sigma Xi Scientific society headquarters in Durham, North Carolina during the lunch break last Saturday afternoon. I was attending the annual Science Online conference for the first time and it was quite an experience. Getting to meet science writers like Carl Zimmer, David Dobbs, Ed Yong, Greg Gbur, Sheril Kirschenbaum, and a host of others is a thrill for me (despite feeling distinctly intimidated at first). Although a lot of the talks were livestreamed, there is nothing quite like being there in person. I also attended the workshops on Friday and got a chance to socialize a bit as well as listen to readings by various authors. They also had guided tours to various science and culture sites in the area although I wasn't able to get on the list for the Duke Lemur Center. Oh well, maybe next year.
The festivities on Saturday were especially enjoyable including a formal banquet, an awesome presentation by Margaret Lowman, the Filmfest awards, and a comedy performance by Brian Malow. Sadly I had to miss the last day of the conference since I went home Sunday but the various twitters gave me an idea about what went on.
As an extra note, I should add that January 16 is the 4th anniversary of my blog but this time around I get to talk about something else besides rehashing my various blog statistics (just to prove I'm not obsessed with my numbers despite my own misgivings about that). Things should get back to normal in a couple of days.