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Delft: Report


From: Patrick 'Turtle' Dersjant <patrick@ireland.demon.nl>
Newsgroups: alt.fan.pratchett
Subject: [F] Delft - Some kind of meet report
Date: Fri, 14 Jul 2000 16:29:01 +0200
Message-ID: <MPG.13d939dc8109661698972f@news.demon.nl>

So we met Mike, at a meet. Last Saturday. Are you impressed now?

Who's we? Well, it's me of course - I wouldn't tell this story if I 
weren't there, now, would I? - but also Leo, Martin, Jos, Kimberley,
Rolf 
and Uwe, Daniel, Julia, Jeroen, Michel and Tom. 

It was at Delft - or rather, it started earlier. It started with me 
waiting. Waiting for Godot - no, just waiting for Uwe and Rolf to arrive
at my place, so we could venture to Delft. They arrived, fashionably 
late. But then, they *ha*  visited poor Arwen, who was sick and couldn't
come. Not personally anyway. So that's an excuse, though I don't know 
whether it's a good one. I'll leave that up to you.

But I digress. Which is something I sometimes do - my thoughts are 
sometimes wandering off in a different direction altogether. That can be
nice, depending on the direction - aw, doing it again. Anyway.
We went to Leiden Central Station and took the train to Delft, were we 
found the other people mentioned sitting in a Cafe, waiting. Probably 
waiting for us, but then, you never can be sure can you?

After we arrived, Leo immediately asked our attention for an important 
question - who would be interested in bulk ordering the 'Terry Pratchett
- accused of literature?' book. This was the same question I also wanted
to ask, but was quickly resolved. Delegated, anyway.

We left the pub behind us in search of some food. There were people who 
wanted or needed to indulge in the pleasures of dutch chips (fries) and 
other snacks, some of them almost, but not entirely free of meat.

After this short intermezzo, Jos led us to the Delft Technical Museum 
(although you couldn't call it single line, bwana), to spend some time 
geeking around. Yes, geeking - steam machines first, then an exhibition 
'History of the computer chip'. Admiringly we looked at a so-called 'PC'
with a Microsoft Demo ('We not only know how to make software - we also 
run a business' Remark:'And soon that'll be two of them.') and Word 3.3 
or something. Also there were a lot of blinkenlights to be watched. It 
was also nice that there were a lot of buttons to be pressed that caused
stuff to 'happen'. One of these was some kind of analogue device causing
a cuckoo to sing.
Another interesting exhibition was about illusions, escher-like
paintings 
etc. I'm sure others can fill in the details here, forcing them to reply
to this report <eg>.
The third exhibition showed some interesting designs, including cookie 

boxes, throw-away cutlery, interesting lamps and the Lady-P (a urinoir 
for females).
The last exhibition was about measuring, but sadly time was running out 
there. At least I learnt what a Wisse is - a cubic dutch elle (of wood)
- 
though I don't know what that says about Martin.
In the front hall, the museum had a big structure, kind of a perpetuum 
mobile where marbles were rolling through mazes of steel wire, all
alike. 
This was the cause for some fascination, and can be seen as a prelude to
what would happen later, at the post-meet.
As it was nearing dinner time, we went off to the pub. Nobody joined us 
there, we were already complete.
At the pub we got a large table for ourselves, and immediately noticed 
the background music - it was disco time, literally. Old seventies and 
eighties music were to be the inspiration for a lot of discussions and 
bad puns during the whole night. Obviously, this included geeking about 
said music, as e.g. the discussion on the intro of Hotel Califronia 
(Live).
The presence of The Book meant that several people excelled in bad puns
- 
those not present at NL-meets might want to know that Steven Baxters 
'Mammoths' is a book to be avoided, and therefor was awarded as 'prize' 
for the worst pun at an NL-meet. At the end of the night it went to Tom,
for undisclosed reasons (did there have to be any?).
A notable discussion was had about the upcoming L-Space IPO, and what 
that might mean for the lspace website. Mike was pretty vague about the 
introduction of the personalized portal (my.lspace.org), but Tom showed 
'commercial insights' by suggesting doubleclick.lspace.org.

Generally a good time was had by all, and the food was good too. Drinks 
were a bit slow in the coming, overall, but not really a problem.

After dinner Leo got some spongy puzzles out, that had to be put
together 
in a cube. The top three contenders were Cybercat, Tom, and Patrick. 
Cybercat was also the only one able to solve the toughest puzzle.
Tries to get a giant cube from several of the puzzles were made, but 
failed. Leo confessed he had actually written a program to solve the 
puzzles, and would check whether he could change it to be able to
compute 
the giant cube in his copious spare time.

I'll just randomly put some of the topics that were talked about here:
rowan atkinson sketches
music geeking
food (arwen's bursting bugs)
listening to 80ish music
airplanes
ccde bbq 
computers in movies
physics (microscopes)
icecream in general and Ben and Jerry in particular
vibrating toys
bon jovi geeking
newsgoup/killfiling/rfc's
soccer world championship 2006
tv and police
info on the web
linux
driving & police checks


Somewhere after midnight we left, as Leo and Mike had to get the last 
tram back to Leo's place. We did arrange however to meet up again for 
brunch at Leo's place the next morning at 11am.
Daniel then drove me, Rolf, Uwe and Michel back to my place, where I 
started to fix a printer for some reason or other (mainly because Michel
wanted to buy it, I suppose. Is that enough reason to fix a printer you 
don't need yourself at 2am?).

The next morning we drove to Leo's to discover that Jos and Kimberley 
wouldn't make it to the brunch part. All the others (with the exception 
of Julia) were there though. The 'Leo-place-newbies' were forced to 
select from Leo's music collection 'to open your character to us'. Of 
course, bread products were toasted and eaten, coffee and tea was drunk 
and a good time was had talking about music, books, pub closing laws, 
Delft women, computers, lspace, ISP's and some more. We marvelled at the
!speed of LEo's cable internet, and at the wonders that 

http://www.kibo.com/webtv beholds. You don't want to know, honestly. 

Leo then brought in his marble game, leading to several sad bastards 
trying to recreate the marble maze that was seen at the museum. Evidence
was taken, so if they have been put on the web by the respective
persons, 
please follow up to this.

At about three o'clock I decided it was late enough and went home, 
bringing Martin to the station on the way. As I understood the meet 
proper was finished around forty minutes later, so I can't have missed 
that much ;)

And then there were quotes:
Kim: 'It wasn't me, but i wish i had thought of it.'

Tom: 'You missed the simpson special?'
Mike: 'Ja, missed it. Had something else to do. Getting married, or 
something.'

Tom: 'I wonder what Leo's polarity is.'

Leo: 'Yes. Now kindly lick my knife, please.'

From the description of the plate rack at the design exhibition:
'A simple rack with hidden details in the dialogue of positive 
and negative shape.'

Leo and Jos solving the Rings of Giordani-puzzle: '1 2 1 3 1 2 1...'

Martin: 'I'm going to follow daniel into the loo. No quote.'

Labrat, about the marble perpetuum mobile: 'What kind of person actually
designs and builds such a thing?'
Martin: 'A person not entirely unlike the rest of us.' 

Tom: 'A baywatch cluster...'

Mike: 'Pun!'
Tom: 'That wasn't a pun, it was a... a... a thingie.'

Kim: 'They did have Ginger Nuts, though.'

Mike: 'Bugger off, you serving wench.'

Mike: 'Actually, you'll find there's no species of penguin that looks 
like Tux.'
Patrick: 'That's because he's a finnish penguin.'
Jos: 'Yes. A Finguin.'

The L-space human interface guidelines according to Mike:
'Don't annoy Rob.'

Tom: 'Leo might or might not like people to boogie oogie oggie in his 
face all night.'

Patrick
-- 
'All tribal myths are true, for a certain value of "truth".'
                              -  Terry Pratchett

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