Sunday, August 27, 2006

Conference over

It's done. Yesterday was the banquet to mark the end of the 6 day conference. It has been exhausting and tough, but also very fruitful. My talk went well, and people have come to me afterwards to tell that they'd enjoyed it, and of course to ask questions.

We had only 15+5 minutes, which is too short. Especially the 5 minutes for questions. People have flown it for hours from all the corners of the world, just to have 15 minutes to speak and the chance to answer 2 questions from colleagues they are not likely to see until in the next conference in two years time. And perhaps for that reason, the social side was so important - every coffee break and dinner was spent in discussions about current and future projects. Of course, under the italian sun, and the starts on warm nights, it is impossible and undesirable not to digress to all sorts of issues... And that is why, in this time of broadband internet, webcasting and blogging, we still make the effort to convene in a piazza somewhere.

The conference was of a good quality, although not ground-breaking. And the conference digressed as well, as in the end of it a "political meeting" was organised. We discussed the role of scientists in the world. I'll write about it later. Now I must go and see Bologna. It's very beautiful and so far I only know the route from the hotel to the conference venue, and I really would like to see more of it.

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