November 16th, 2005


Workshop, day 1

First day of the 2-1/2 day workshop is over, and it seemed to go well. My first talk (which was the first one of the day) generated lots of discussion both during and after, and I'll take that as a good sign. I also had several people come up and compliment me on it--also a good sign. Collapse )
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After the workshop adjourned, the water-use database users' group assembled and we headed out to dinner and a short meeting, since we were all in the same physical location for once. Had a nice meal at the Table Mountain Inn in Golden, avoided slipping on any of the icy sidewalks (and had to wade through snow-covered cedar bushes at our parking spot), and even managed to discuss a few issues while waiting for our entrees and then after we had eaten.

Now I'm wiped, and I'm headed to bed. I've set the alarm to get an extra 30 minutes of sleep, as I don't feel the need to try and be down in the meeting room at 6:45 am again. The meeting will re-convene at 8, and all I'll be doing is keeping us on schedule and announcing breaks and lunch. Oh, must arrange airport carpools for Thursday and Friday, but....Yay! I'm done with my talks!

Day 2 of workshop

Day 2 went smoothly, with just a couple of speakers running over time (including the guy who was sure he didn't need his full 1-1/2 hour time slot, and who went 2 hours) and thus needing some adjustments on the fly. We ended up omitting a 1/2 hour session of questions and comments intended to get both general questions on the content, and comments on how the participants feel about the workshop--we'll try to do some of that tomorrow morning, instead.

There were a few ruffled feathers on the team (my herd of cats), esp. as J-- used an example in her presentation of a problem with public-supply data for New York that "should have been obvious", and D-- is on the team and did the data for New York. But one hopes these will smooth down once we are all done with this week, get home, and chill for a while. And K--, our official keeper of the datafiles, took some time to corner the water-use programmer, and he's going to write us a nifty comparison program that will look at 2 directories of MS Access files and generate a report of all the differences between the 2. This will help us find the places where some published numbers have been changed (as we don't yet have a way to lock those data in the datafile), and will help each State identify all those changes they want to request be officially made via our just-announced procedure for modifying published data. This nifty program replaces the one we were going to use that will do this for any pair of databases--and which I'd have had to run for each pair of the 53 datafiles x2, for we have 3 files for each State (and D.C., Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands) that we need compared.

The Denver weather is still cold, though it's moderating some. It was again 19 when I got up this morning, and I could have used another layer of clothes when I went out to dinner. My 5-minute walk to the nearby lunch spots was not unpleasant, though.

Tomorrow is a half-day for the workshop, and then we'll have a smaller group that will spend the afternoon discussing "the future of site-specific water-use data in USGS". I'll be participating in the discussion but it's not my problem to lead it--much easier. Then Friday morning I'll catch a ride to the airport with someone, and head home. Should arrive in the midst of Atlanta's Friday afternoon rush hour...