When we had a workshop on datamining in December several of the speakers stressed the importance of caring about individual examples, data tails (rather than averages), the value of qualitative analysis (as well as quantitative) etc. In the process of establishing a meeting place like HUMlab I think it is also worth stressing the importance, validity and power of individual examples or cases. Sometimes seemingly small things make a real long-term difference. Or one meeting may change the way you think about yourself and the world. I think this is an extremely important perspective looking at the long-term process of esatblishing something like HUMlab.
I was thinking of Marius who has spent a few days in our lab and to me, meeting him, learning more about his project, sharing some of his energy and seeing him work with HUMlab staff and graduate students have been very rewarding. Actually more than rewarding. My passion for HUMlab somehow feeds on such meetings. They do not have to happen every day or even every month – but in themselves they can validate an enterprise such as HUMlab. I really believe that.