It is February 10 and the week is ending…

Count down to WST on 10 February 2017

WST 2017 is getting closer.  Using our digitally reconfigurable vertical surface information tracking system (DRVSITS for short, ‘the wall’ for even shorter) we can see we are just 32 days from the start of the event.  Registration has been open for a week and so far 195 of you have signed up for the main event on Wednesday 15 and 51 for the workshops on Tuesday 14.

WST 2017 sign ups by 10 February 2017

However interest is somewhat tentative, so far, in the Tuesday workshop called “As yet untitled…”, with the tag line “… where the ineffable meets the inedible…”.  While it is believed this is just a temporary title and description, and while it is rumoured that those who came up with this title and description really amused themselves in the process, more details are clearly needed.  We are pursuing.

Workshops have been taking place for those planning presentations and posters.  One of the things we talked about in the lead up to the event are ‘spin ins’, as opposed to ‘spin outs’, the positives triggered by the event before it happens.  We will look to make sure we create the chance for spin outs and follow ons but this ‘spin ins’ are interesting – they are the chance for colleagues to work together before the event, to do some of the connecting up and collaborating that the event is all about.  There have been two poster development workshops and two presentation development/giving workshops – the last of these starting at 11am today. This is work on the ‘how to’ side of presentations and posters, and chance to hone skills and work with colleagues.

People are also working on the ‘what’ – shaping the presentations, most of which have multiple strands, into broadly coherent sessions where the strands have their own clear message but where the theme of the session is held together as well.  Each of the sessions will have a host who runs the session and chairs the Q&A at the end.  Lots of work taking place in this space too and more details on the session chairs to follow.

And to quote the recently retired Garrison Keillor, “Well, that’s the news from Lake Wobegon, where all the women are strong, all the men are good looking, and all the children are above average.”

(If you like Midwestern satire and comedy blended with New Yorker humour and country and western music, Garrison’s your only man, inspiring with the thought that the attempt for excellence is dangerous as it only leads to disappointment.  This is not, of course, a sentiment UCD Agile or WST subscribes to but you’ve got to take what you get if you look to be amused.)