PPIG 1999 - 11th Annual Workshop 5 - 7 Jan 1999, Computer-Based Learning Unit, University of Leeds, UK

By Nigel Birch

January 1999, and a typically British winter, damp, cold and gloomy. In the occasional glimpses of sun through the gloom, the usual eclectic mix of PPIGlets gathered at Fairbairn House in Leeds (interestingly, for an old building, no one was claiming that Queen Elizabeth slept there. Queen Victoria did, though!).

The event started on 4 January with the postdoc consortium. This was followed by the PPIG ‘do-it-yourself’ (or bricolage as they say in France - see later) ceilidh.

The guest speakers were Russel Winder and Françoise Détienne.
“Get the roof” said Thos, hence the odd angle, achieved by the subjects standing at the top of the stairs into the hall and the photographer lying sprawled on the floor at the bottom.
“Françoise Détienne, This is Your Book” Thomas Green, Russel Winder and Françoise Détienne - Génie Logiciel et Psychologie de la Programmation. Editions Hèrmes
A feature of PPIG is the informal discussions. Here are some informal discussants: Paul Mulholland, Judith Good and Alan Blackwell are some of those seen here discussing the merits of the coffee.
More people wondering about the coffee machine
There were talks as well.
Here, Jorma Sajaniemi (“Saja” to his friends) prepares,…
…while Judith Segal does the introductions and then tries to turn down the lights.
Downstairs in a cosier room. A bit thin on the ground. Coffee too good?
Note the interloper at the back - Hello Marta!
Ray Dawson chairs the session and introduces his student Tom Jackson.

The Social Events

A ceilidh, now a tradition of PPIG, took place the first evening of the Doctoral Consortium. The scratch band in full cry.

Left to right: Paul Mullholland’s shoulder; Jeff Feddon; Moti Ben-Ari on recorder; Thomas Green on wind synthesizer (Photo: Yifat Ben-David Kolikant)
The second evening (the first of the annual workshop) was a quiz night.
Left to right: Yifat Ben-David Kolikant, Chris Roast, Valerio Talarico (who will be organising PPIG 2000) (Photo: Moti Ben-Ari)
The PPIG dinner took over Hansa’s Indian restaurant in Leeds.

Including, from left to right: Judith Good, Tom Jackson, Maria Kutar and Paul Brna
With James Aczel, Paul Mullholland, Gada Kadoda
Saja, Marta Rosatelli, Mordechai Ben Ari, Jeff Feddon
Left-hand side: Jeff Feddon;

Right-hand side: Chris Douce, Raquel Navarro, Saja, Marta, Mordechai,
Irene Ruding, Bill Rudling (responsible for the PPIG Owl), Chris Roast, Alan Blackwell
Backs of heads (including Russel’s), Thos, Simon Holland (this was the musos' table).

The Prizes

No PPIG would be complete without the prize-giving ceremony for the announced and unannounced competitions. Herewith a selection of this year’s winners (camera film allowing).

Mordechai Ben Ari, for the Best New Word at a PPIG Meeting - bricolage.
Russel Winder, for the Most Distracting Background to the Slides (what he would have got if the sound had been working we’ll never know).
Amnart Pohthong, for Being Prepared and standing in when one of our invited speakers couldn’t get here. Amnart had come with a prepared talk, just in case. He even had some overheads. And it was just as well for us.
Jeff Feddon, for Sheer Helpfulness: brains in solving problems, brawn in carrying out the solutions, and even turned out to be an excellent guitarist.
Simon Holland, for his Lastest Minute Registration. This was keenly contested, two people managing to send last minute bookings in while Thos was demounting the online registration form, but Simon actually managed to get a booking made after it had been disabled.
Quiz Master Extraordinaire Chris Douce (as a member of the team that came second, all I can say is we was robbed).
Saja, for the person who actually Showed us Some REAL CODE.
The remaining prizes were awarded to Pablo Romero.
Fabrice Retkowsky, for Patience and Fortitude for sitting through the quiz after accidentally disqualifying himself by having an e-mail sent to him with all the answers.
James Aczel and others, for presenting the Paper with the Most Authors.

That’s it. See you next year in Calabria.

Text and photos by Nigel Birch, unless where stated otherwise.