Some initial notes from lessons learned during FreeSurfer course in São Paulo, Brazil 11 & 12 March, 2009
This is a work in progress. I expect to remove the "Work in progress" until March, 23th
We had a wonderful FreeSurfer course in HCFMUSP in São Paulo, Brazil in March, 2009. In order to save you some time if you are thinking about organizing a Freesurfer course, I've put some of my personal notes in this page. I think this is a compilation of what we have learned from my mistakes and some of our successes.
I'm not sure that the people from the FreeSurfer development team can make more than few courses per year specially if they are outside the US. So try to book your course with enough time, check with your sponsor is fine with the idea and your institution has scientific skills to have at least 20-30 people who make research in neuroscience or intend to use this tool.
Measure Twice, Cut Once
Keep in mind that you should provide one computer per pair of atendees. It's strongly advisable to test all computers before the course.
- 19" LCD Monitor
Core2Duo or AMD X2
- 2GB RAM
- 10/100/1000 Lan or 802.11g/n Wifi
- 15" LCD Monitor (if you can provide 17" at least it would be better)
- Pentium D or superior
- 1GB RAM
- 10/100 Lan or 802.11g Wifi
Laptop notes Laptops can be handy if you have limited space, however it's advisible to provide a proper mouse and to check the video board of the Notebook. Intel Video boards sometimes can create trouble.
Virtual Machine All FreeSurfer GUI tools runs fine in VirtualBox. If people want to try it in their own computers probably it's a good idea to give them a DVD with a VDI image that runs inside Windows.
* If there is interest I can provide a VDI distribution.
- The distance the instructors have to travel is an important factor. If your sponsor can afford buying C tickets it would be kind to you do so. However if you can only afford Y tickets keep at least 24 hours between the arrival and the beginning of the course.
- If you live outside US check with the immigration authorities of your country weather there's some Visa need to US citzens to enter your country. It´s advisable to ask if all the instructors are US citzens and take the proper action. It would be very nice if you pay the expenses for the Visas.
- Make a health/accident/luggage insurance for the instructors. It's very affordable and it can be useful if anything goes wrong.
- Book a hotel close to the place where the event will take place.
- Check how they will go from the Hotel to the Course. If english is not widely spoken in your country give the oportune direction to the information desk of the Hotel to them to inform the cab.
- A proper desk for each pair of students is preferable over other configurations (auditorium seats, notebooks on the lap, etc.)
- A projector, microphone if the room is large.
Putting people to work