Monday, 22 February 2010

Only another week to the Phoenix SME

This time next week I will be at the SME Meeting in Phoenix.

My first SME Meeting was Denver in 1987, and then in the following year my only other visit to Phoenix. I’ve lost count of the number of SMEs I have attended, in Denver, Salt Lake City, Reno, Albuquerque, Cincinnati, but Denver is my favourite SME city, not just for the nearby ski resorts but also for its pleasant downtown area, particularly the 16th Street Mall.

There is always a feeling of déja vu with SME Meetings. No matter where they are held, they resemble large set pieces- the same impersonal registration booths in identical characterless convention centres, a large exhibition and a bewildering array of parallel sessions.

They are not exactly fun meetings, as the IMPCs have been in recent years, but, like the IMPCs, they are essentially great meeting places, the technical papers (in my opinion anyway) being secondary.

I only spend a couple of days at the meetings, and most of my time is spent strolling around the exhibition booths, catching up with old friends and always having a few surprises, bumping into old acquaintances from the past.

I will at the meeting Monday and Tuesday, so if you are going to be there, please let me know, and we may bump into each other!

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