#plantbiology15 day 2.

Today was a quieter day for me at Plant Biology. I missed a lot of sessions and just was more internally focused today, though I did do a bit of networking, which was good, got my CV reviewed, gave my business card to a lot of people. As with many things, I do have a fear of missing out, but it’s not possible to see everything and I think we all just do our best.

But there was a lot going on to be sure! I’m writing this based on conversations, tweets, and other input, so anyone can correct me if I’ve gotten something wrong.

Today seemed to be a little lower key too across the meeting, a little more subdued. Perhaps it was because I was running around in rooms doing things like testing the new Plantae platform designed as a digital ecosystem for plant scientists. It really has a lot of potential I think.

ASPB put out a question of the day on a giant roll of paper. “What do you hope to learn/do at Plant Biology?” Many people answered in their own creative ways. Tomorrow there will be another question and on Wednesday a 3rd.  I think things like this are important little distractions, and if the idea that doodling is good for retention of ideas, a good outlet to have at conferences where learning is part of the goal.

And more play happened at the end of the day with a performance from a you tuber performing a song at The Plant Cell/Plant Physiology Editor’s workshop:

As for science, the morning session on the rhizosphere was quite interesting; talking about how fungi steal some of a plant’s nutrition (carbon) but can give back phosphate and nitrogen to support plant growth is fascinating. There’s a whole signaling dance and response that happens with plants and symbiotic fungi. Lots of gorgeous images today.

The minisymposia also started today. Amongst the tweeters, the most popular sessions were sessions in bioinformatics and pant architecture where cutting edge technologies were on display.

Although if you look through a search of #plantbiology15, there is a lot there from the minisymposia that happened today.

Then it was time for the poster session where everyone descended on the poster and exhibit hall for drinks, snacks and conversations. I had a few people stop by my poster too, which was cool. I was able to handle the questions well, I think, though I’m not sure how well I really did. It’s always hard to gauge these things.

There were several workshops, one on publishing in Plant Phys and Plant Cell (& probably good tips for publishing in any journal), a session on work-life balance (a really important topic in STEM…do take time for your life, it really will make you more productive, creative, and a better scientist most of the time), and one on cultivating broader impacts (I think blogging counts, even if it is more passive!).

The Women in Plant Biology lunch tackled the subject of handling conflict in the work place, something nearly everyone deals with at some point.

I end there to just say that even though academics argue science, feel anxious due to impostor syndrome, perfectionism, and straight up comparison to others (usually ends badly), we really are a community that is here to help solve problems in the world through new technologies, ideas, and just plain hard (& hopefully smart) work. It’s a diverse community and one i’m proud to be a part of and broadcast to the world via social media and the blog.

Stay tuned for more from #plantbiology15 tomorrow.


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