Patristics conference diary – day 1

I drove up to Durham yesterday — 277 miles — in glorious sunshine and got myself checked into the Durham East premier inn.  The conference arrangements have been somewhat haphazard, so I called St. Johns College and enquired about early arrival today.  They told me that I could have saved myself the hotel bill!  Memo: check such things with the people providing accomodation.

This morning is an equally beautiful day.  Central Durham is very lovely in the sunshine.  I got my room, got my car parked, and then spent the morning wandering around enjoying the weather.  The light and the sun reminded me of Rome.  I went into a BHS and had a roll and a glass of coke, in a restaurant with a view over the river.  The world was full of light, and a delight to wander around in.

Formal check-in for the conference is 13:30, at which point I hope to find out who is attending etc.  I’ve just found the computer room — I have been unable to get my laptop to communicate with the wifi network, for lack of the necessary instructions — and hope to blog throughout the conference.

Mind you, with the weather as it is, who wants to be indoors?  If all the papers tomorrow look boring, I might drive up to Hadrian’s Wall!  It’s within striking range from here.

There’s at least one paper today that I definitely want to hear.  There’s also a number of “plenary addresses” — anything lasting 75 minutes is suspect to my mind — but the first one, on the connection between the Fathers and Roman Law, might well be interesting.

Since I don’t formally arrive until 13:30, I need to shoot off and get some lunch first.  Fortunately there is a Tesco Metro nearby, and an M&S.

More updates later.

4 thoughts on “Patristics conference diary – day 1

  1. Someday interested parties will be able to view such conferences online, for free, at their convenience, and in the comforts of their homes. If not in real time, perhaps days later. But the great plus would be access to content-rich scholarly material whenever it is convenient for the “attendee.” Yes, we would lose the joys of physical social interaction, if you consider that a joy. In exchange we would have universal access and, hopefully, the contents of the lectures preserved for the future.

    You have lots of technical knowhow, Roger. How difficult could it be? The technology already exists for presentations of various sorts and is mainstream (for example, Google’s YouTube). It would take one or more people to film the presentations with a digital camera or even webcams; someone to create an index of the films and put them on a site like YouTube. A roving reporter might also blogs. It could be like a real news event.

    The only drawback, of course, is the “Human Factor.” With everyone along the way thrusting out their hands for money and commodifying “intellectual rights”….

  2. Technology has some way to go here at St. Johns College. I’ve had a lot of difficulty getting on line. But yes, why shouldn’t they all be on YouTube?

  3. Basically… it’s as technical as having a Mac iBook. Even if there is no internet connection at the conference. You open the iBook and point the camera at at the speaker, and save the audio and video of the talk. Then at some later time, you upload that file to http://ustream.tv

    Honestly, it’s pretty much that easy.

    Cheers! RichGriese.NET

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