Groningen

Hi --

Sorry I've been busy, and also out of easy internet contact. I spent Monday mostly chasing red-tape at Bath -- stuff with PhD student forms and with hiring some people to do some work on Cognitive Systems promotion for the EU. I was supposed to meet up with an industrial colleague who makes internet "chat bots" Monday night before my talk, but he couldn't make it, which was fortunate since between that and my train being delayed 40 minutes on Tuesday morning I just got my talk finished for Imperial (which is the best technical university in the UK, kind of like MIT in the US).

My popular-science talk Monday night went really well and lasted for hours with lots of really good questions -- I think a lot of academics and people who really enjoy reading science turned up. A bunch of my friends did too and it was too bad I didn't get to talk to them all. The talk Tuesday went fine too but was kind of boring in comparison ;-) Then I took the train up to Nottingham and spent the night with Will.

On Wednesday I met with Will's boss and we planned doing some outreach work about agent-based modelling in Nottingham. But then Thursday morning (at 5am) we went to the airport to fly to Groningen. You remember in December that I said Dutch PhD defenses were like weddings? So we knew not to turn down the invitation of one of Will's colleague's wife. Will was really impressed by just how like a wedding it was -- especially the receiving line to greet the new Dr., and also the speeches at the dinner afterwards.

Well, I've refused to fly back again, it is too much travel, so Will and I (and his two friends) are staying here until Sunday. Today we found a cafe that had internet so I finally caught up with a lot of my email. I've also been working on a paper I thought was due on the 15th (a rewrite of an already accepted paper) but fortunately I found out today it is actually due the 25th, so there's hope... I am also working on all the hiring stuff, and should be working on something mysterious happening with some of my group's code and our revision control system. Ah well, dinner time now...
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