The 2012 International Workshop on Deep Inelastic Scattering and Related Subjects in Bonn (Germany) is coming up at the end of next month. I'm scheduled to give a talk there, but my adviser has asked me to look for external sources of funding to cover the trip. So naturally I thought of Stack Exchange and its speakers' bureau program.
Why is this of interest to the community?
DIS 2012 will be attended by a lot of accomplished high-energy physicists. In particular, representatives of the major experiments at CERN and elsewhere will be presenting their latest results, so anyone who follows the latest trends in high-energy physics will be interested to know what is presented at the conference. I can write up daily updates and post them on my personal blog, and I can also make an effort to ask relevant questions on the site.
What is the benefit to Stack Exchange?
Many of the physicists there also have teaching duties, and there will also be graduate students and postdocs giving presentations (at least, I assume I won't be the only one there who's not a professor). Even if these people may not be the type to ask questions on this site, they are in a great position to recommend us to their students or members of the public. So this is an opportunity to get more people aware of this site. I can also mention other related SE sites which may be of more interest to the conference attendees - I'm specifically thinking of Theoretical Physics and Computational Science.
What do I need?
As I mentioned at the top, I'm looking for any funding sources that can replace some of the grant money that (I assume) I can get through my university. Since the potential benefit to SE is not as great as if I were going to a conference specifically to promote this site, I wouldn't presume to ask for a full sponsorship of the trip, but even, say, a contribution toward the cost of the hotel would be helpful. I already plan to acknowledge selected Stack Exchange sites in my presentation, but I think the acknowledgement might carry more weight if I could say "sponsored by Stack Exchange, Inc." People's ears tend to perk up when they hear that money might be available somewhere ;-)
Physicists don't go to conferences expecting to collect T-shirts, but if I had some small things to hand out like business cards, pens or pencils, or maybe even stickers, I could probably send a few people home with reminders of our network.
So what does the community think about this? Is it worthwhile? If not (or even if it is), I think we should keep in mind the possibility of sending someone as a representative of PSE to a more high-impact conference like next year's APS general meetings.
- Success! Stack Exchange will be partially sponsoring my trip to Bonn and I will do my best to involve the Physics.SE community, perhaps including posting updates on this meta question. More details will be coming.
- Swag has arrived :-) I have some stickers, pens, and markers to hand out at the conference.
- I'll be mainly posting updates on my blog and on Twitter, but I'll also add summaries to an answer to this meta question.