Before I forget, it was Oktoberfest on the weekend…though that doesn’t explain the Yokohama obsession with baumkuchen…I asked someone about that and apparently a lot of germans settled in Kobe….which is nowhere near Yokahama……this conversation did take place in japanese so maybe I missed something….
Also Halloween is coming up, I think the Japanese understand that one, everywhere you look there are these wierdly shaped and strangely coloured cookies, buns and desserts with mysterious ingredients….oh wait, they do that all year round!
So it begins…..conference opening session…..
This conference is a publicity officer’s dream….and the conference chair is the star of the blockbuster production.
There are two themes that get repeated over and over, they are “Face-to-Face” and “4K-2K-3D”
face to face is all about “Real Time, Real Size, Real….” hmmm I forgot the third one already and they never did explain what the 4000 and 2000 were in the other one,. something about speed and resolution I think, anyway I do remember the 3D bit, especially since even the former prime-minister had to wear the 3D glasses during the specil session….then they said that since the 3D glasses were paid for by tax payers money we had to give them all back…luckily I have my Hoyts Real3D glasses waiting for me at home!!!
The Dean of Medicine put this movie together about a team of Doctors in 2017, diagnosing a cancer remotely, doing various tests and then doing the surgery remotely…the scene where the remopte doctor notices a tear in the young daughters eye and remotely consoles her with “its only a 20 min operation and your dad will be right back with you soon” was very touching….speaking of touching there was this device that does “remote palpitation”…the doctor has an elastic dummy that he presses on with his fingers…meanwhile the patient wears this wrap-on thing and feels the pressure in the spot corresponding to where the doctor is touching the dummy……..hmmmm I wonder what that will actually get used for….
Amazingly the 3 hour keynote session took place completely in Japanese….with Japanese overheads…..good practise for me, but a bit rough for the other foreigners…they did provide simultaneous translation through ear-pieces …..
So the word for “refraction” contains the same kanji as the word for “origami”…must mean folding light……
Now the piece-de-resistance of the show case was a 3m by 6m HD screen with a live cross from Yokohama to the science museum in Odaiba bay, Tokyo where a former astronaut took almost an hour to explain that the Earth is a sphere and if you represent it in 2D it gets distorted…geee you don’t need to fly into space to work that one out….
anyway, they had the high tech, high def real life size screen and at the same time they had a simple powerpoint presentation running on a second screen driven from a Windows 7 PC…guess which one failed for the first 30 mins of the presentation….
Mr Astronuat: ” Oh well, you have to imagine you can see this animation of a sphere being projected onto an icosahedron…” waves his hands hopefully…”..have we got the powerpoint working yet???….no…oh well just imagine…”
Then the 3D presentation consisted of the chair and his research team jumping up and down in front of the camera…..I overhead someone say that Toy Story 3D had a better plot….at least they didn’t paint themselves blue….
Afterwards we went to the research labs where they had set up a closed-circuiit 3D TV system, you get one of your friends to stand in front of a special camera, and then if you wear some glasses and look at a screen you can see your friend in 3D….from the right position you can even see yourself in 3D…I’m sure there was a distortion going on somewhere…’cause I’m not that fat!……
new pick-up line “….so nice to meet you in real life, you look much more attractive than your 3D image…”
Oh and here is the funny stuff about accomodation…..
the germans like me were super organised and booked hotels as soon as they were announced…so we are in Yokohama city and need to take a 15 min train trip in and out each day…..well its 15 mins if you get the express and not the local….and you don’t go in the wrong direction….I knew what I was doing, can’t see why its so hard fro anyone else…
the italians were less organised and booked their hotel much later, when some different hotels were recommended….so luckily they are only a 3 min train ride away…unfortunately they don’t seem to be very skilled in coping in a foreign countrry and spent more than 15 mins trying to work out which train to catch and then ended up on an express that didn’t stop where they wanted…..
the spaniards were the least organised, and so they are staying on campus in the same building as the conference….which means they are not much fun to have dinner with because they don’t get hungry until 10:30 at night and don’t then need to get public transport home….
hope we get to hear some hard science tomorrow….the nice thing about the venue is that every seat in the auditorium is equipped with a powerpoint and internet comnnection, so I can browse the web during the boring talks…..is anyone listening to the speakers????