Sunday at camp was a little less intense. In part I was tired from a fun late night drinking and discussion with many folks so I kind of zoned out in the first morning session. I also was preparing to give a presentation on genes and evolution along with another postdoc (Angela) at Berkeley talking about cis-regulatory evolution and 3-D images of drosophila development (which is SO much cooler than my stuff…).
I also went to a session on teaching children basic scientific principals through comics with instructions on how to build things. The HOWTOONS comics are definitely the coolest way to teach science and I wish this was required for all elementary science classes. I was really blown away by this. Some other pictures from the books showing how to make ice cream.
The day wrapped up with debrief of how to improve scifoo camp. Some people wanted more time in sessions – others wanted a longer meeting that went to Sunday night. I would vote for more diversity as well – there seemed to be an awful lot of white males there (myself included) and I think it doesn’t represent the breadth of interesting scientific discourse if those are the majority of the people coming to the table to discuss. I also think some more controversial discussions took place about innovation, science, and commercialization of it through patents and copyright. Most of the people there agreed that the patent system is hurting biotech – what about someone who didn’t agree arguing the counter-point (or would they feel attacked the whole time by virtue of being in the minority)? One person suggested there need to be more arguments and I think that would help and maybe distinguish this more from a scientific meeting where people present their work and there is not much challenging of it (depending on the meeting I guess).
At any rate, I found it to be a very interesting collection of people that I would have otherwise not met, and I definitely enjoyed the discussions and a chance to communicate some of my work to non-biologists.