Monday, December 13, 2010

American Geophysical Union (AGU) Fall 2010 meeting

So it's the opening day of AGU in San Francisco and the geophysics world has turned out in force. It's a bit weird for an IT geek to be here, but since SOEST is a major player, I figured it was about time to see what's happening. After all my school turns into a ghost town during the conference with a huge portion of our researchers and grad students presenting talks and posters here.

With over 18,000 oral and poster presentations being presented over the next 5 days, scientists will be presenting talks on "Frontiers of Geophysics" and emerging earth science policy.

Different from trade shows, AGU is a massive collection of presentations in a peer review environment, where it's the duty of senior scientists to rip into theories being presented. Also very different is how huge areas are set aside for young scientists to put up posters about their work. To say that the plotter at SOEST was busy this week is an understatement, with a large number of folks on the plane with me carrying plastic poster tubes on board.

Different too is the number and variety of sessions. With track topics like: geodesy, global environmental change, natural hazards, hydrology, biogeosciences, seismology, and many others;this is certainly one of the largest gatherings of earth and space scientists I've ever seen.

Considering just how much it gear this community purchases, my role as an IT analyst at SOEST means I need to learn their language, their needs and wants. Funny how IT analysis forces you to become a "jack of all trades" since you can't automate what you don't understand. So if you're looking at finding a green market for your it goods, well maybe you should be here too?

Brian Chee

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