Home Science CommunicationCommunity & events SciBarCamp article in British Science Association magazine

SciBarCamp article in British Science Association magazine

by Eva Amsen

Jim Thomas came to SciBarCamp as a participant but also took the opportunity to write a great article about it for Science and Public Affairs, for the British Association for the Advancement of Science.

He wrote it back in March, and fact-checked it with the organizers soon after, but it only came out today, so it’s slightly dated already: there is one confirmed science-themed BarCamp underway at the moment in the form of BioBarCamp. It will be held August 6-7 in Palo Alto. Location has just been confirmed yesterday! That’s the day before SciFoo, so several people who are going there will also be able to go to BioBarCamp, and then there are people from the Bay Area who can attend as well. (And crazy people like me who plan their vacation around it. Yes, I’m going to California and plan to spend an entire day indoors.) Speaking of SciFoo: after the article was written

Speaking of SciFoo: after the article was written Michael actually did get invited to this year’s SciFoo. Yay! I’m glad they didn’t invite him earlier, though, because as you can read in the SciBarCamp article, the fact that last summer neither of us had been to SciFoo (but really wanted to) was the spark that ignited the whole process of organizing SciBarCamp.

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Attila Csordas June 4, 2008 - 4:17 PM

2 reasons were behind my original BioBarCamp idea and not SciBarCamp:
i., to organize a bio-related BarCamp so I don’t know whether “‘PolymerChemistrySciBarCamp’ doesn’t have quite the same appeal” as SciBarCamp but a specific bio-themed BarCamp is somewhere between the radical eclectic of SciBarCamp and the strict focus of PolymerChemistrySciBarCamp
ii., the people who were not invited to SciFoo but would like to gather together and my special motivation here is that I was invited to SciFoo last year, and this year too

Eva June 4, 2008 - 4:29 PM

I actually, personally, think it might work for “PolymerChemistrySciBarCamp” as well. Because even when you’re at a very specific conference with strict scheduling and programming, a lot of the interesting conversation occurs over meals and during breaks. If people form a collaboration with someone they met a conference, it’s usually not the result of a Q&A after a talk, but of conversations in the hallway.

“Spinoff” was a poor choice of words, but I didn’t want to use the article’s original “copycat” either, because BioBarCamp is so different.
“Other science related barcamp”?

Eva June 4, 2008 - 4:56 PM

Oay, “spinoff” is removed, and it’s still a working sentence. Does it make more sense this way?

Michael Nielsen June 4, 2008 - 5:24 PM

That’s a great article Jim wrote. Somehow, it really captures the flavour of the event.

Eva June 4, 2008 - 7:33 PM

I know, it’s like being there all over again!

Cameron Neylon June 5, 2008 - 3:05 AM

I agree with Eva, I actually think a PolymerChemistryBarCamp would be very cool. Even a BioPolymerForTherapeauticsChemistryBarCamp could be very fun. I don’t think a narrow(er) focus means that the more structure is requred -arguable the reverse could be true. The challenge as you go to more focussed topics is finding enough open minded people to get it to work.

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