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We're evaluating the feasibility of sponsoring a member of the physics community to speak at a conference in 2011.

Speaking is a relatively big "ask", so this needs to be planned many months in advance. Let's get started!

We'd like the community to establish where ...

What relevant physics conferences are coming up in 2011 that have open speaker slots or calls for papers?

... and then who.

Which members of the community are strongly interested in being sponsored by Stack Exchange, Inc to speak at one of the above conferences in 2011?

To be clear, the speaker is free talk about anything he or she wants so long as it would be roughly on topic for this site -- with a quick acknowledgement of support from Stack Exchange and a mention of the community here.

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    $\begingroup$ Also what needs to be decided. Are you planning to sponsor someone who was going to give an ordinary physics presentation anyway? Or would it be something developed specifically for the purpose of promoting the site, i.e. actually speaking about Stack Exchange? (Regardless, I think this is a nifty idea) $\endgroup$ – David Z Apr 15 '11 at 6:12
  • $\begingroup$ You're looking for volunteers interested in talking about their research at your expense? With a little SE promotion thrown in, of course ;) $\endgroup$ – Deepak Vaid Apr 15 '11 at 11:34
  • $\begingroup$ I think that the sponsorship would amount to... we will cover basic expenses that the conference itself does not cover for its speakers (which might include travel reimbursement; I assume conferences don't CHARGE their speakers to attend, but if they did, and it was a good conference, we could possibly cover that too) $\endgroup$ – Joel Spolsky Apr 15 '11 at 14:14
  • $\begingroup$ For the record, I meant "what" as in "what would be talked about?". Although it is also nice to know what the sponsorship entails. $\endgroup$ – David Z Apr 15 '11 at 21:21
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Sponsoring a booth at a big conference like the APS meetings might have a better impact, and reach a broader audience.

If the goal is to boost interest in the site and increase the reach, at a booth you could present the site as it appears, provided you have an internet connection available, and more time to work interactively with interested parties to show off the benefits. Plus, at said conference, you could always combine efforts and have some speakers use a minute of their talk to plug the site and then to direct people to the booth for more details.

Of course, sponsoring a booth is more expensive and requires more person-hours than a few well-placed plugs at the end of related talks (and nothing that comes with conferences is cheap), but it's something to consider.

You may be able even to apply for an NSF grant for funding because this dovetails nicely into the "broader impacts" criterion of bringing science to the masses.

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Any APS meeting will allow essentially anyone to give a 10 minute talk. You can sign up yourself.

For example, I had a conjecture on a new decomposition of unitary matrices proven on math stack exchange here: https://math.stackexchange.com/q/28413/8536 which I'm putting into a paper for Journal Math Physics. A version of the paper before adding the new proof is here: http://brannenworks.com/Gravity/qioumm_view.pdf I'm planning on presenting it at the NWAPS meeting in October at Oregon State: http://www.aps.org/units/nws/meetings/meeting.cfm?name=NWS11 To make a presentation you have to prepare a set of slides.

These meetings come with a fee of about $50. If you slide me the fee, and maybe $100 for gasoline driving over there, I'd be happy to acknowledge you as a sponsor and to give the math and physics stack exchange a good word.

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Here are two links which contain comprehensive lists of conferences in high energy, string theory and related topics.

http://www.aei.mpg.de/~stefan/schools/

http://www-library.desy.de/conf.html

The deadlines for abstract submission for many of the conferences taking place in the first half of the year have already passed but there are a LOT of events on these two lists.

Neither one of the above lists mentions the Loops '11 (as in LQG) conference in Madrid from May 23 - 28.

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In case you would be presenting Physics.SE to a mega meeting such as APS (people will come to the booth, no doubt. It stretches over days and has over a thousand particiapnts with lots of browsers who'll check out) I'd suggest someone sort of creates a pamphlet of sorts, compiling some of the best questions and answers. Seeing quality physics being exchanged on this server, lots of researchers might flood in.

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