I’m on a boat! [Weekly Head Voices #20]

Welcome all, to the 20th edition of the Weekly Head Voices, now with ever so slightly updated title style!  Let’s just call it Rotterdam-style for now. In any case, this edition looks back on weeks 14 and 15 of the year 2010, with news about a boat and the people on it, two more accepted student papers (I’m just SO proud at the moment), and the International Symposium on Biomedical Imaging (ISBI) 2010 that took place this past week in, you guessed it, Rotterdam.

Below is the boat on which the conference social event took place on Friday evening:

The actual boat that we were on Friday.

It is a nice boat, full of food and drink and happy people. After a while, I was feeling like the protagonist in one of my all-time favourite music clips (the version embedded below has bleeped out swear words, for the uncensored version, click here):

(Certain people have claimed that there is a certain resemblance between me and aforementioned protagonist. I hope that nobody is being undeservedly insulted or flattered.)

I’ll get right back to ISBI in about a paragraph or two, but first allow me to wax ecstatic about three of my master’s students who just had their first papers accepted at VCBM 2010 in Leipzig: I am so fantastically proud at the moment! A ton of hard work went into these two master-pieces (student names in bold):

P.J. Schaafsma, S. Schutte, H.J. Simonsz, F.H. Post, and C.P. Botha, “Dynamic Visualisation of Orbital Fat Deformation using Anatomy-Guided Interaction,” Eurographics Workshop on Visual Computing for Biology and Medicine, 2010. (8 pages)

A. Van Dixhoorn, B. Vissers, L. Ferrarini, J. Milles, and C.P. Botha, “Visual analysis of integrated resting state functional brain connectivity and anatomy,” Eurographics Workshop on Visual Computing for Biology and Medicine, 2010. (8 pages)

Click on the title for the fulltext PDF and more.  As always, remember: Cite them soon and cite them often!

Back to the the ISBI conference: FrancoisM, man of multiple blogs (fpixel, fvoxel and finally francoism.  have I forgotten any?) and all-round hip guy (harr harr) got us in with the following paper and (beautiful) poster:

D.F. Malan, C.P. Botha, R.G. Nelissen, and E.R. Valstar, “VOXEL CLASSIFICATION OF PERIPROSTHETIC TISSUES IN CLINICAL COMPUTED TOMOGRAPHY OF LOOSENED HIP PROSTHESES,” Proc. ISBI, 2010, pp. 1341-1344. [link to paper page will be added soon]

Besides the chock-full scientific programme of paper presentations and posters, there were a number of special sessions and keynotes, all of them definitely keynote-worthy. However, there are two meta-lessons I took home (for those of you not paying attention, that means that these are by definition take-home messages, harr harr), apart from all the valuable scientific content:

  1. By a very rough count, I saw at least a billion rainbow colour maps. I know that these are well-loved by scientists all over the universe, primarily because they’re available everywhere and because they’re easy to make (hey, let’s vary the hue between 0 and 1!).  However, think twice next time you opt for the rainbow, and whilst you’re thinking, read this: D. Borland and R.M. II, “Rainbow Color Map (Still) Considered Harmful,” IEEE Computer Graphics and Applications, vol. 27, 2007. (I myself have sinned before and still do sometimes…)
  2. More importantly: It’s really very hard to give a good talk if you’re going to discuss more than two or three different topics. In spite of experienced and skilled speakers, many talks suffered due to this. An illustrative counter-example is that of Dr. Roderic Pettigrew, head of the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (one of the National Institutes of Health in the US), who presented the work of a number of NIH grantees. A master-orator, it was wonderful to see Pettigrew integrate various different projects into a single coherent presentation by regularly going back into overview mode, describing how the just-described or the next project fit into his grand vision. The bottom-line is: Either limit yourself to a maximum of three different topics, or put a great deal of effort into the integration of your topics.

My personal favourite talk of ISBI 2010 was that of Prof. Bram van Ginneken in the special session on computer-aided detection, during which he deftly illustrated one way of reaching the next level in one’s chosen research speciality: It seems that transcendence is possible by Revolution Through Competition! Oh, just go read the page and make sure you’re there next time the good professor gives a talk.

Finally, during a pleasurable but perhaps far too late night somewhere in the city, I was convinced by two BIGR members (all the BIGR people I know are extremely pleasant, so watch out!) that the Weekly Head Voices title style should be slightly upgraded, with the post title in front and the weekly head voices branding at the end. At the time, it seemed like terribly logical advice. Although somehow I don’t recall exactly why I thought that, I did promise to give it a try.  So what do you all think?

Someone might also mentioned that my posts were too long…

4 thoughts on “I’m on a boat! [Weekly Head Voices #20]”

  1. Thanks for the rainbow color map link! I try to convince people some times that these color maps are evil, but other than “rainbows are gay”, none of the arguments seem to be convincing enough. Now I can simply refer them to this article.

    Anyway the new DTITool has a real transfer function editor, and no longer a dialog where the user can specify the min/max hue/saturation/color, so it will be much more difficult to use a rainbow color map :).

  2. Good link on colour maps. It now explains my internal “Huh?!??” when I can’t intuitively understand an image using a rainbow map. I always thought it was some acquired skill to read the colour gradiant. Probably still is, but looks like it is not very helpful. I feel better now… ;)

  3. I strongly disagree on putting the post title in front. I mean, it’s your blog man, so you just do what you gotta do, but *some* of your subscribers just may go read different blogs instead. Blogs that do not have the post title in front. MPOV ;).

    How about a sub post title? Or is that impossible in WP?


      If I understand correctly, you in fact prefer the OLD style, i.e. “Weekly Head Voices #N: Catchy Post Title”. What would be your ideal, regardless of wordpress limitations?

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