Sunday, July 12, 2009

The Porter of Seville

AKA: Lo que pasa en Sevilla se queda en Sevilla. (I'm pretty sure that one should use quedarse here rather than quedar. An online Spanish-English dictionary seems to back me up. Let me know if I got this horribly wrong.)

AKA: What happens in Seville stays in Seville.

Also, while my upcoming status as the Porter of Seville isn't as cool as The Rabbit of Seville or even The Barber of Seville, I think it's pretty damned good. Naturally, I earmarked that title for this particular blog entry when I first decided to attend this conference. (I don't normally come up with entry titles several months in advance, but this one was just too good to pass up.)

Early tomorrow morning, I will get on the bus to head to Heathrow airport for a morning flight to Madrid. I will then stay in the Madrid airport for a several-hour layover before I take a "one hour" flight to Seville. (I seriously should have found a better configuration.) I suspect that only about 30 minutes of that flight will have actual flying. I will be attending LENCOS, a conference on "Localized Excitations in Nonlinear Complex Systems". In practice, this will entail lots and lots of talks on solitary waves and allied concepts. This is rather narrow in scope mathematically, though a wide range of applications will hopefully (and likely) be represented. One thing I really like about the conference is that there are no parallel sessions and that it is a level playing field---every talk is 20 minutes + 5 minutes for questions. My past experience with relatively small conferences in which everybody sees every talk have been quite good. This format is usually quite conducive to meeting and have lots of chances to talk to other people, which can be particularly beneficial for young scientists who might otherwise be virtually ignored by their senior colleagues. There are supposed to be some posters as well (for people who chose to do things that way), but I can't see any reference to them on the website.

Interestingly, the conference venue was supposedly the inspiration for Carmen back in the day. I need to find a way to get "The Toreador Song" (or maybe "The March of the Toreadors", which would probably work better) into my talk. I will be presenting a talk on granular crystals.

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