I just got back from SciFoo. Thanks to Tim O'Reilly, Nature, and Google for putting together the conference, and also to Timo Hannay of Nature for inviting me.
I'm still sorting through everything I learned - SciFoo is a lot like the Hackers conference in that the idea is to put a lot of interesting people from all over who are actually doing things, and let them decide what the conference is about. It's spontaneous and exhausting, and also a lot of fun.
I kept track of the books, papers, and websites people mentioned as interesting and important, and I thought I'd share this list:
- The Moon is a Harsh Mistress. Robert Heinlein. Mentioned by Charles Simonyi, who carried it to the ISS and read it in space. (Amazon)
- Quantifying global exergy resources. W. Hermann. Mentioned by Saul Griffith and Joost Bonsen of Howtoons. (pdf)
- Cartesian Meditations. Husserl. Mentioned by Neal Stephenson.(Amazon)
- The End of Time. Julian Barbour. Mentioned by Neal Stephenson. (Amazon)
- The Road to Reality. Roger Penrose. Mentioned by Jaron Lanier. (Amazon)
- "Reprocessing the Universe." John Wheeler. Mentioned by Lee Smolin.
- The Mathematical Universe. Max Tegmark. Mentioned by Neal Stephenson. (arXiv)
- The Theory of abstract objects. Edward N Zalta. Mentioned by Neal Stephenson. (website)
- The usefulness of useless knowledge. Abraham Flexner. Mentioned by George Dyson. (excerpts at IAS)
- How many humans can the earth support. Joel E. Cohen. Mentioned by Kim Stanley Robinson. (Amazon)
- The world, the flesh, and the devil: an enquiry into the future of the three enemies of the rational soul (1929). John Desmond Bernal. Mentioned by Greg Bear. (copy)
- The myths of innovation. Scott Berkun. Distributed at SciFoo. (Amazon)
- 23andme.com - Genomics. Mentioned by Anne Wojcicki (co-founder) and Esther Dyson (board member). (website)
- Freebase - Open source data. Mentioned by Danny Hillis (co-founder) and me (founding team). (website)
- JoVE (Journal of Visualized Experiments). Mentioned by Moshe
- Bioscreencast.com - screencast sharing for life scientists. Mentioned by Deepak Singh. (website)
- Eigenfactor.org - ranking and mapping scientific knowledge. Mentioned by
Carl Bergstrom (website)
I'm sure I missed some, and there were other sessions that I didn't attend, so I welcome suggestions for additions to this list from other conference attendees. Either email me (ptufts AT gmail DOT com) or post in the comments section.
Updated 9 Aug @ 3am