A contingent from the Phyletica Lab recently attended the 2017 Standalone Meeting of the Society of Systematic Biologists, hosted by Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. This was the first SSB Standalone meeting for all of us, and it was fantastic. The meeting began with a strong lineup of workshops covering cutting-edge phylogenetic software, followed by two days of a healthy mix of debates, open discussions, and lightning talks.
I have to say, the ratio of the quality of science to the number of participants was greater than any conference I have ever attended. The small size of the meeting created a strong sense of community among the participants, and allowed us all to attend a single session and engage each other in open discussions. Also, the meeting was short enough to avoid conference fatigue.
Breanna and Randy presented great lightning talks. Much better than my own talk, for which the slides are below. Most importantly, albeit to the detriment of our health, we all enjoyed more than our fair share of Cajun food.
The Phyletica Lab would like to thank Jeremy Brown for organizing the meeting, and a small army of LSU biology graduate students that made such a wonderful scientific forum possible! Thank you!