Today’s guest blog is written by Research Scientist Danette Daniels, PhD.
One of my favorite things about being a scientist is attending conferences. They are an opportunity to connect with the broader community, share ideas, talk about the future, and get inspired. After a conference I would return to my lab feeling so energized and excited, being motivated to push the research forward and work on the next stories we could share.
In March of this year, I remember my shock of watching the conferences slowly getting canceled one by one. First, it was everything in March and April, then May, then through to August. I was in denial at the time, thinking this would be temporary and that we would all be back together in person in a few months. Then it became quite clear this would not be the case and events were transitioning to a virtual format.
Virtual! I was so skeptical. How could you connect with anyone at a virtual conference? How are people going to ask questions after a talk? How will it be to give a talk basically to your computer, not knowing who is listening, or more importantly for me, not being able to read the audience? I was not looking forward to it, but the alternative, no conferences at all, I thought was worse.Continue reading “Reflections on Virtual Conference Life: Can You Hear Me?”