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Wednesday 12 April, 8pm - After Dinner

It's been a long day, for me at least. I fell out of bed at 6am thanks in part to my flatmates cat (he was using his shouting voice to try and get everyone up). The first set of presentations started at 9am, followed by a keynote by Tyrone McAuley (Sidhe Interactive). Everyone went back to the Marae for morning tea and I stayed behind to guard Tyrone's laptop before his talk. Stefan brought me a cup of tea for my efforts, which was much appreciated. After Tyrone's talk we all went back to the marae for lunch. After lunch we had the second lot of talks. After the talks I came back to the lab and uploaded the first lot of photos to Flickr, which may not have been the best idea considering that there is a 100MB upload limit and after day one we are already halfway to it. Everyone else attended the Panel Discussion, which I heard featured a very animated Steve Reeves. We then all sauntered across to the WEL Academy of Performing Arts for the Suits 'n Geeks evening. There didn't seem to be too many suits about, perhaps all us geeks scared them off! Craig's Keynote went down very well, I sat in the front row which seemed like a good idea at the time but my neck was starting to get a bit sore by the end with all the looking up. Dinner was served after the keynote, and after scoffing a mini filled roll and a pastry I scarpered off home to finish my slides for tomorrow's talk. Speaking of which, I should probably go and get some work done on it...

By Kathryn Hempstalk, Program Committee.

Tuesday 10 April, 8pm - After Dinner

Just after the table was set up at 3pm, everyone started to arrive and register for the conference. Things were a wee bit slow at first but as soon as Anna and the team got into the swing of it, it became a very streamlined operation. We all milled around for a couple of hours, chatting with people from other universities. At 5pm we were gathered together with the visitors being sent up the road to be formally welcomed onto the marae. The powhiri was quite an experience, and included Professor Ian Witten (my supervisor) playing us a nice piece of music - instead of the traditional singing. After we all became tangata whenua of the marae, we went around with a hongi (nose press) and then filed in for the hangi (food smoked in the ground). We all scoffed our dinner then dessert and ended up chatting again. It was announced that "The Don" - the local campus bar was open. I took the opportunity to run off home and get some much needed sleep, all the running around today really took it out of me.

By Kathryn Hempstalk, Program Committee.

Tuesday 10 April, 11:35am - Pre-registration

After all the careful planning of the conference over the past year, the big day has finally arrived! It's not without it's little trials and tribulations though... I got to University this morning to discover that the entire University was closed for Easter Tuesday, all the buildings were locked and discovered that my cardax (swipe) access card has expired. Fortunately Te Taka came by just as I was telling the card reader what I thought of it, and I was able to get into the building. Te Taka was on his way over to check on the hangi. Over the Easter weekend the other organisers have been busy little bees, with a nice pile of filled bags appearing in our lab. The bag contents arrived in bits and pieces last week including offerings from Endace, Google and DL Consulting. This morning the lab has an eerie silence about it, just the gentle hum of 20 computers idling on the login screen. Very soon that will all change, and I'm enjoying the peace in the meantime.

By Kathryn Hempstalk, Program Committee.

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