I find myself in yet another airport lounge after yet another conference. Its a little grey outside, the rain reminds me of England and the mind is a little tired. All that said, it was a good conference. PhUSE always is.
This year the conference was held in Vienna. It is a city I enjoy travelling to. It has easy transfer from the airport, nice hotels, impressive architecture, some wonderful cafes and the beer is not bad. On the beer front we are not talking Leffe or a nice Pelforth Blonde but still it slides down nicely and it is always good to share one or two with friends you have not seen for a while.
Every PhUSE event I’ve attended has been good and this year was no exception. There were plenty of excellent talks with many pitched at the practical, ‘I could use this tomorrow’ level. Other presenters talk to the future and the problems the industry faces but they have a basis in reality. Each day commenced with an excellent keynote and some of the words spoken by Simon Weston will stick with me for some time.
I put in an abstract, wrote my paper and did my slides all pretty much on time. This in itself is a miracle. I was always against the idea of having to write a paper as part of a conference presentation but I have come round; it focuses the mind and it improves your presentation. PhUSE are also very good at time keeping. You have your 20 minute slot and there are five minutes of questions. Then there is five minutes to move to anther room; you can pick and choose your talks. You don’t go over your time, that is not permitted, there is a ruthless German efficiency to the timekeeping. As a result your time doesn’t get squeezed because the presenter before you has taken 10 minutes of your slot talking about something that no one cares about invited because of who they are rather than anything they have to say. Everyone is treated equally. Your efforts in preparing your paper and presentation matter.
So I like PhUSE. I would recommend it to everyone.
I presented on the work I have been doing on the metadata repository and the progress made on the semantic version. The slides are a little more up to date than the paper, as I inserted one or two new screen shots a few days before the presentation so as to be able to provide the latest information and lessons learned.
You may notice on one of the final slides, I promise to write more blogs. As I explained to those in the audience I would like to write up the work every week but sometimes the attraction of developing is greater than that for documenting. I sensed the people in the room sympathised with my dilemma.
So now I can write an update of the terminology work I have carried out over the last few weeks and then I will write up the Biomedical Concept (Research Concepts) steps. I will try and keep my promise.