Lindau Nobel conference - Tuesday afternoon and dinner

Today was a busy day. I was somewhat surprised at how shy people are of the little Flip camera - so much worry about the future career prospects if one does something seemingly 'unprofessional' like say a couple of words about one's research for the Lindau YouTube channel and my blog. But see the two interviews below, and I got a few more promise to do it tomorrow. I bet Nobel Laureates will be easier to persuade than the young researchers!

In the afternoon, although it was very hot, I put on my shirt and tie (instead of my 'Ida' t-shirt) for the Open Access panel which I shared with Sir Harald Kroto and Dr. Jason Wild. Moderator Beatrice Lugger made an excellent introduction which made it easy for us to get started right off the bat.

Dr.Kroto talked about his efforts (and those are huge!) in providing educational materials for science teachers, as well in using modern technology, especially video, by the students. This includes a mandatory video they have to make about their research which goes into their CVs and is evaluated when they apply for the next level of education, e.g., grad school.

Dr.Wild, who is published of physical journals at Nature and I used the perceived "competition" between Nature and PLoS as a starting point to introducing the two publishers, the two publishing systemes and two business models. This was then a good basis for further discussion of various Science 2.0 applications, the commenting/notes/ratings functionalities on PLoS papers, and the importance of Open Access for research, for medical practitioners (particularly in the developing world) and teachers.

In the last segment, to some extent prodded by the excellent questions by the journalists in the room (this was a Press event), we went into speculation about the future of science publishing and communication, for which I borrowed heavily not just from my own posts, but also from the brand new, thought-provoking and generally excellent post (a Must Read!) by Michael Nielsen which I just managed to read a few hours before the session.

Someone filmed the session, but I understand that the video will not be posted online (or allowed to be posted by me, if I get my hands on it in a shape of a CD). You will have to trust my word that the panel went very, very well.

In the evening, we were split into groups for dinners. Each group had a Nobel laureate or two, a couple of people from the Press (which includes bloggers, as this is a forward-thinking conference) and a lot of young scientists. I went to the elegant and excellent Restaurant Wissinger to the dinner hosted by Henkel. Nobel laureates Shimomura and Wütrhrich were in our group, but I (as Press, remember) did not want to bother them - there were many young folks there eager to talk to them and that is much more important to them than me - if I want an interview, I can probably get it tomorrow. Instead, I spent a wonderful evening talking to the neighbors at my table, all bright, young, highly motivated scientists. And the food was delicious, including great local wines (Hagnauer Burgstall, a dry pinot gris, and Meersburger Benge, a dry pinot noir). Pictures under the fold:

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