Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Almost there

Today was more mellow. I decided to sleep instead of attending the morning talk. My body thanked me. Then went to a session of talks about intelligent design, which was so well-attended that we hand to change rooms from one that seated about 50 people to one that seated over 300. The talks were good and the q/a period was only moderately painful.

For lunch, Carl and I walked the half hour each way to go to Salumi, where we ate bread, cheese, various salamis, and gnocchi that was being made by an old lady working at the front window. I spent an hour and a half wandering through the posters and that was followed up by two talks - one on the Stardust mission results and one on high-redshift supernovae and the accelerating universe. Both of those were excellent talks. I harassed various grad students from my university about not being at the posters (mean Dr. Lisa!) and then had dinner with Carl and Dr. Bob, which was really nice.

Tomorrow is the last day of the conference and I'll be presenting a poster. Whee!

6 comments:

Michael Jasper said...

So did you scientists scoff at the intelligent design peoples? Throw stuff at 'em?

Dr. Lisa said...

Actually, the talks were mostly about how to deal with intelligent design without insulting the religious beliefs of our students. We were probably much more respectful than we would have been treated in return.

SarahP said...

Sounds like a pretty good con!

My husband leaves next week for Photonics West, which is...somewhere out west, maybe L.A.. He's so frantically busy that he's flying out on Thursday, giving his talk on Friday morning, and flying back on Friday night.

Dr. Lisa said...

A good con, indeed. And good luck to your husband!

Michael Jasper said...

Interesting -- sometimes it's hard to take the high road and be respectful of people like that, and I imagine it's even harder for people like you who have made science a career. Good for you!

Too bad it doesn't work both ways...

Dr. Lisa said...

Yeah, there was an Intelligent Design-representative heckler in the audience, using the typical ID technique - be confrontational and then when the scientist won't respond in kind, argue that science is open to debate. Didn't go over well with the assembled audience.

As an astrophysicist and educator, I find myself often speaking about science that, depending on their religion, really goes against some of their beliefs. I try to be aware of these scenarios. Others, maybe they don't try so hard. And ID'ers paint all scientists as atheists, which is certainly not the case.

Tricky stuff.