Calling all oceanic science, mapping, and geography nerds! If you weren’t at the ESRI Ocean Forum, you gotta get yourself there next year.
Heres what I have to take away from my first real conference:
- Collaboration is a true strength in science. I cannot speak to how things were in the past in the scientific community, but I believe the movement of sharing via our nearly infinite pathways on the internet is gaining speed. For my field specifically, the ESRI Living Atlas has provided me with so much data and inspiration that would have taken weeks to find otherwise. I feel very lucky to emerging onto the science field in an age where data is becoming more open, and connections to others doing similar things is essentially instantaneous. We are so much stronger together than we ever could be apart.
- Interpretation is everything. What good is a map that no one understands? Why should your data be shared, and how should you be getting that message out? We now have the ability to generate so much information through means other than pure print publications. If we want more people involved in our community, we need to be making a conscious effort to stretch outside of the niche scientific communities, where it can be so easy to remain in for the sake of ease and comfort.
- Conducting science and putting that science to use are two very different things. The thought of the sheer masses of data and resarch that have been done and just sat in some professors list of publications makes me incredibly sad. As a scientist I hope to put my findings to work, and ensure it makes it into the right hands of action if they are not my own.
- Enthusiasm is everything. You love your science? Say it with some passion. I am so shocked at the amazing response my presentation has received this week. My methods were simple, my project incomplete, my analysis nothing spectacular, but I explained how much I cared, and how excited I am to get so something extraordinary in the future.
- Science is fun. Science is SO FUN. How lucky are we to be able to analyze problems and test solutions and watch ourselves succeed and fail on a small scale for the ultimate large scale success of society. Wild stuff man.