AGU experiences 2010
This is at least my fifth trip to San Francisco for the fall meeting of the American Geophysical Union, and by far and away, this one was the absolute best experience I’ve ever had. From arrival to departure. The weather was great, the company was great, the posters were great, the sessions were great, the talks were great, the meetings were great, and the social events were great.
Attending from the Tetherless World Constellation were professors Peter Fox and Deborah McGuinness; software engineers and researchers Stephan Zednik, Cynthia Chang, and myself; and graduate students Evan Patton and Eric Rozell.
As with any conference like this, we took some time to meet with colleagues and collaborators. We were able to meet with the folks at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, mainly on Monday morning, but also throughout the week. We also had meetings with the folks from Goddard Space Flight Center and folks from the University of Texas El Paso Cybershare group. We made a lot of good new connections and built up some possible collaborations with new groups. So look for some new projects in the TWC.
This AGU was the first time that I’ve given a presentation at a conference of this size. I’ve given shorter talks at other, smaller gatherings, but nothing like this. It was a great experience. Great feedback from folks in the audience, good questions. I look forward to doing more presentations in the future. Thanks to James Michaelis for doing most of the writing for this presentation. I look forward to working on this project with him.
My big focus this time, more that I heard more talks and saw more posters on the topic, was data citation and attribution. Peter Fox posted to the TWC blog on this topic earlier. Data citation and attribution, as well as document citation and attribution and other forms of media and data, is something that people are interested in. As Peter mentioned, more from the standpoint that people want their work to be cited, to get credit for all the hours and resources that they put into their work. And I can certainly appreciate this. I’ve been looking at it also from the standpoint of data storage, persistence, and metadata associated with the data. We have even been chatting with folks from the RPI library about this, making sure that RPI resources are in a common place with common access methods, proper attribution and citation. Instead of each department, or each constellation, or each class, or each professor and student keeping track of their own work and storing them on their own machines, it would be nice to have a single location for the university where anyone can post their data, add semantic information about the data, and have that data searchable using varying means. Of course, it would be nice to utilize the semantic tools that are are creating at the lab.
So, I went to some of these sessions, found some of the posters, had some conversations with people, and brought back some business cards and scaled down versions of posters. I look forward to continuing our work with the library and with Jim Myers up on campus with this topic, and possibly bringing in other collaborators.