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Posted by Yon Bard on January 10, 1999 at 12:19:57:

My own personal ranking of reasons for going to conferences is (from best to worst):
1. Dealers' row
2. Exhibitions
3. Meeting other ruggies
4. The lectures.

Having attended many technical and scientific conferences throughout my career as computer scientist I can attest that the problem of unsatisfactory lectures is not confined to rug conferences. Unfortunately most people are not born lecturers, and the problem is particularly acute when they speak in a language that is foreign to them. I don't know what can be done about that, but there is really no excuse when (as is often the case) the visual material (slides, etc.) is of poor quality and does't clearly show what it's supposed to.
One pet peeve that I have about conferences is the fees they charge. The coming ICOC in Italy is really out of sight with $580-750 fee (depending on when you register).

Regards, Yon

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