FEEDBACK ON THE 2nd (Aerodyne Nov. 2000) AMS USERS MEETINGS
  1. What is your overall rating (0: not useful at all to 5: extremely useful) of the AMS users' meeting?

    • 5, extremely useful (10 people)

  2. What is the appropriate frequency for the AMS meeting for you? (e.g. yearly, every two years, every 1/2 year). We kind of agreed on yearly but I wanted to hear what people have to say in more detail.

    • Yearly (10 people)

  3. What would be the right duration of the AMS meeting from your point of view? (e.g. 1 day, 3 days, 5 days...)

    • 3 days (8 people)
    • 2 to 4 days (1 person)
    • One week, with breakout sessions after 3 days (1 person)

  4. What aspects of the meeting did you find most useful (e.g. software demos, talking to people, seeing the new instruments, technical discussions of instrument and software details, presentation of data from lab and field campaigns...)

    • All of it (7 people)
    • Getting an overall picture of what all the other groups were doing so that we could all decide on where best to focus our efforts.
    • For me it was really good to get a run-down on operating the data analysis program, hear about all the field work and get comments from users on how the AMS works. Putting some default values into the Igor analysis code was good.
    • I found all of the above to be very useful. I think new users, especially, will need a broad look at everything that goes on. Although as the group grows, the lab/field presentations may have to become more succinct and strictly limited to a time period or we may end up there for weeks! Another possibility if we start to be time limited may be to have special sessions headed by various people to discuss different aspects that could occur simultaneously and people could choose (e.g., John could do technical/instrument issues, Manjula software, etc.). We kind of did that this time, but I'm thinking of something more in-depth.

  5. What aspects of the meeting did you find least useful?

    • Nothing (9 people)
    • long discussions about color schemes

  6. What aspects do you wish we had covered, but we did not? Or what aspects did we cover in too little detail?

    • Publication issues have been discussed only very shortly (3 people)
    • More "hands on" time regarding calibration and analyzing data. We should have recorded data overnight then plotted it as a group with the computer projector.
    • Maybe a little more discussion of the best ways to present the data (or look at it for that matter).
    • What other measurements are most complementary to the AMS.
    • Also, a clear and detailed procedure on doing the calibrations-I suppose this discussion belongs with the manuals, but we never really discussed them. Specifically, on making calibration particles. We talked about this a little, but it seemed to me that the general conclusion was to be careful making them, but careful how? This is a really important point, since it affects all measurements.

  7. If we divided the meeting in two parts, one more centered on general results and improvements, the other one in software and operation details, which one(s) would you be interested in attending?

    • All of it (9 people)
    • Technical details (1 person)

  8. What location do you prefer for the meeting: Aerodyne? AAAR meeting? Other location or meeting?
    • Either AAAR meeting or Aerodyne (7 people)
    • Aerodyne (2 people)
    • AAAR meeting (1 person)

  9. Any other comments that you want to add.

    • This works because we have good users!
    • Great work though I can't see how the meeting can take the form it did if the user base expands.
    • It was a great meeting, especially meeting other users. I hope we can keep it up!
    • If we redo this next year, I would not wish to turn one day of it over to an overview of how to use the instrument, this could be done a day ahead of the main meeting for those that wish

  10. An important underlying issue is to which point / how we can maintain the current (and great!!) atmosphere of trust and sharing as new users keep coming in. Do you have any thoughts on this, and how we can manage the situation as the user base expands?

    • I don't think sharing experiences with the instrument is a problem for anybody - even in a growing 'community' - everybody learns from all the others experiences and that's a benefit for all. But we should be a little careful in exchanging field data. We should implement the password protection for the ftp site as discussed soon.
    • Tricky. Thinking hypothetically, if the the number of groups was to say double or triple I think much more work on the agenda should be done prior to the meeting with perhaps people distributing summaries of what they will be talking about in advance. That way people will be better prepared and will be able to conduct the meeting more effectively. That may be a good idea anyway, even if we don't get that many more people.
    • It will very difficult to do this, especially as the "old" users become experts. We might try to emphasize a spirit of cooperation similar to what is done for the Gordon Research Conference. Everyone, including Aerodyne, should understand that the people who collected the data have the obvious priority over sharing that data with outside parties or at any other meeting. As long as this "right" is respected, the current atmosphere of trust and sharing should be maintained.
    • I have no idea how big the user base is going to become. At a certain point, one has to divide the user base in, for example, lab and field groups. But it is important to keep the good atmosphere, and regular user meetings will help to achive this goal.
    • Iím not sure if I have enough experience interacting with people in a large group to comment on this. What Iíd say is that the extent to which we want to maintain our interaction would depend on the work-attitude of the new users, so maybe we canít decide on it at this point.
    • I am not sure about this at all. Already I hear of some users not communicating and it is only going to get worse. My feeling is though that those who want to participate in this way will, those that dont won't. The difficulty is how do you protect the information drain to others, whilst retaining open discusson between active participants. We need some safeguards and my feeling is open source analysis tools and releases of lab results should be protected from open use until publications are underway. This of course means we must publish quickly.