ASM anyone?

Back from Mongolia (photos here for anyone interested), but heading off across the country this weekend for this year’s American Society for Microbiology general meeting in Boston, then down to Connecticut for some reunion-ating. I just wanted to draw your attention (especially those of you planning to head to ASM, or already in the Boston area) to these events:

The Science Social Media Breakfast
Tuesday, June 3, 2008 8:00 a.m. ET – 10:00 a.m. ET
Channel Café, 300 Summer Street, Boston, MA

Join Elio Schaechter of Small Things Considered and Chris Condayan from the MicrobeWorld Radio and Video podcasts for a lively breakfast discussion about using new media for science communication. All attendees are encouraged to share their experiences in using new media, such as blogs, social networks, video and audio podcasts, and wikis, to promote the life sciences or for use in educational settings.

This event coincides with the American Society for Microbiology’s 108th General Meeting in Boston, Massachusetts from Sunday, June 1 to Thursday, June 5, 2008.

Please note that The Science Social Media Breakfast is not directly associated with ASM’s General Meeting and is therefore open to anyone in the Boston Metro Area to attend.

Attendance is free, but space is limited. Please register online at Eventbrite.

There also will be a session on new media:

Symposium Session
097/W. Microbiology in the Media: When It Works, When It Doesn’t and How to Do It Right
Monday, June 02, 2008, 2:30 pm – 5:00 pm
258 A, 415 Summer Street, Boston, Massachusetts

For the majority of the general public, their only exposure to the world of microbes and microbiology is through the media. Often, journalists or documentary groups will interview microbiologist and then interpret their research for a mass audience. This relationship is often tricky, with competing interests between the scientist, concerned with scientific accuracy, and members of the communications industry who are concerned with clarity and interest. If balanced, this can lead to extremely successful interactions that have a positive impact on public understanding. If not, the result can severely damage public perceptions. Such interactions can also have an impact on individual investigators, who must find a way to balance public outreach without risking their own scientific credibility. This symposium will discuss some of the successes and how they worked, some of the failures and why they didn’t, and how to work with journalists and documentary makers to ensure a successful collaboration.

I’ll be there all week and have a grad student presenting a poster there; who else will be there?

Front row seat for hand, foot, and mouth disease in Asia

I’m taking a quick hiatus from my hiatus. I mentioned that I had quite a bit of travel upcoming, and I happen to be in the midst of my first trip. However, it just so happens that where I’ve landed–Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia–is experiencing an outbreak of hand, foot, and mouth disease in kids, caused by Enterovirus-71. More after the jump…
Continue reading “Front row seat for hand, foot, and mouth disease in Asia”

On Hiatus

May and the first week of June bring an R01 deadline and 2 weeks of travel, and I’m trying to get 2 more manuscripts out the door by the first of June. To minimize distractions, I’m closing up shop here for about 5 weeks. I’m also mulling about a new comment moderation policy; I’m tired of the resident trolls shitting all over every discussion thread, but I’ve not decided what to do about that just yet. Anyway, check back after June 8th for new material.