IWP9 2008

04 Nov 2008

Continuing with my travel spree, I made a trip to Volos, Greece and back for the 3rd International workshop on Plan 9. I was to make short presentation on Glendix, a paper on which was selected for the workshop.

Being a brown single guy in his early twenties, traveling around Europe is not exactly fun. Just saying. I got picked out not once, not twice, but THREE times for “random passport and security checks”. Once in Munich on my way to Volos, once on the streets of Athens, and finally on my way back at the Frankfurt airport. Not that I’m complaning, they were just doing their job; but really, they need to get better at profiling.

Athens is a really nice city, though it reminds me of India: crowded trains, chaotic traffic and sketchy bus stations. I knew most of the Greek symbols, thanks to high school Math courses, but pronouncing them wasn’t easy. Thankfully, the people at the counters in the Airport, Bus and Metro stations knew English. After a 5 hour bus ride, I reached Volos in the wee hours of Thursday. After around 3 hours of sleep and about 30 minutes of slide preparation, I was set for my talk.

Considering I was at a Plan 9 conference, talking about integrating it into Linux, my talk was very well received. Certainly beyond my general expectations: I got some really excellent questions, comments and general observations, and most importantly, a lot of help on the current issues that Glendix faces. All the other talks during the conference were extremely interesting as well, I was particularly fascinated by the concept of “Upperware”, the Inferno port to Nindento DS, and the Mrph morphological analyzer. Do check out the entire conference proceedings.

It was great to finally meet all the Plan 9 and Bell Labs folks in-person, especially: Sape Mullender, Charles Forsyth, Bruce Ellis; not to mention the IRC regulars uriel, quintile, sqweek and fgb!

The return trip was a bit more scenic, thanks to it being afternoon. After spening the night in Athens, I was back in Amsterdam the next day. More adventures followed, but that’s for another blog post.

Nothing like a trip to IWP9 to humble you!

P.S. Cool Glenda goodies for sale at Cafepress