It is apparently not universally revered because it is an invite only event. I feel lucky for the chance to interact with some interesting people. Certainly different from any other conference I’ve been to. The participant list is private so maybe to give people freedom to say what they want?
My concern about the format is that science is so broad. Will we have enough in common to have discussions? Will we spend all the time explaining what we do but never getting to a higher level of discussion – or never discuss? So far I seem to be gravitating towards the other biologists since I know them, but maybe that will change. It seems like most people are either computationally saavy or are working with large datasets from earth science to genomics to biology. There are several science writers and SciFiction writers as well which I find very interesting – I guess where else do you get cutting edge material. So who did Gibson talk to before Neuromancer – I wonder?