Conferences and Meetings: August 2009

Dear members and friends of ASGSB,

Make plans to join with your colleagues and friends in Raleigh, North Carolina, from November 5-8, 2009, for the annual meeting of the American Society for Gravitational and Space Biology. The scientific committee is very excited about the program, which will include symposia on Habitation Science (chaired by Cary Mitchell), Biological Engineering and Synthetic Biology (chaired by Marshall Porterfield) and The ISS as a National Laboratory (chaired by Ken Souza). We will also have posters, oral sessions, committee meetings, and plenty of time for networking.

Weary of catching planes, burning up fossil fuels, and spending lots of time and money to attend meetings? Take heart! Virtual worlds are shaping up as possible venues for online meetings--and astrobiology graduate students are leading the way in exploring their potential. On July 17-18, 2009, early-career astrobiologists met at the University of Washington in Seattle for the 6th annual Astrobiology Graduate Student Conference (AbGradCon), and simultaneously in the virtual world Second Life. Students presented talks that were streamed live into Second Life and participated in a real-world and virtual world "mixed reality" poster session. Social media such as Facebook, YouTube and Twitter were also used for sharing information before, during and after the conference. MORE