A couple of days back I gave a talk on some of the research work I have been doing for the past one year in Ghent. The talk was in the conference Finite Geometries, Irsee 2014, and can be found here. This is one of the most important conferences in our research area and since this was my first ever talk in such a setting I was naturally quite nervous. But from the feedback I got it seems like I looked pretty calm and composed, and many people enjoyed my talk.
Perhaps the experience of playing guitar on stage during my undergrad years helped.
I think I got the basic idea across pretty well and even those who didn’t know what near polygons are could still follow most of the stuff. The best compliment I got was from Tim Penttila, “It was a Tendulkar like innings”. He also added that he could see how much I enjoyed working on the stuff I was talking about, something that people sometimes fail to convey.
This was a brilliant conference. The part I enjoyed the most, besides the talks of course, is talking to old mathematicians about their personal interactions with people like Paul Erdős and R.C. Bose. Finding out that Erdős used to sleep in the front row during almost every talk made me feel less bad about dosing off a couple of times. Listening to Frank, my supervisor’s supervisor, about his grad school experiences in the late 70’s was also quite interesting. That was the time when your PhD thesis would be typed in an IBM computer by the secretary of the department!
I met some really interesting people and made many new friends. Looking forward to seeing them in future conferences/seminars.
Finally, some pictures of the beautiful place: