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walterg's blog

iassist 2015: the conference song!

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Here it is, at long last - the words to the 2015 IASSIST conference song! Thanks to: Melanie Wright for her excellent guitar work, singing, and help with lyrics; Lisa Neidert, for lyric ideas; and the self-proclaimed Data-ettes (Daniel Edelstein, Joanne Webb, Kakia Chatsiou, Mandy Swygart-Hobaugh, Victoria Mitchell), for their enthusiasm and wonderful work singing the choruses. A link to a video will be added once someone informs me of its existence!

WE ARE IASSIST (to the tune of "Little Red Corvette", by Prince)

I guess we should have known,
The Minnesota crew would always put on a show
The theme for this year's conference
Bridging the data divide
Would tell where we'd go

Tweets were coming out now, workshops were so great,
They told us what we should know
Then it was Tuesday night, beginning IASSIST right
We said "Now it was time to go"

(And then we all say)

We're at IASSIST!
It will go much too fast
Now it's IASSIST!
Data nerds will make it last

Wednesday sessions started,
The rain began as well and it never seemed to stop;
Census nerds heard stories, goats & sheep were heard too,
The quality never dropped.

At the business meeting,
Tuomas was our new prez; we saw the donut chart;
Then it was poster session time, and more discussion time,
Food & drink to make us smart.

(Now we all say)

More of IASSIST!
Bill and Bo see the Stones
It's still IASSIST!
Tweets make us feel we're not alone.

Facebook’s maximising profit or altruistic bridging
the divide in the Internet?
Challenges for training, ideas for curation
Constructive arrogance and more yet.

Using web cam data, lying metadata authors
Pechachkas were the best
Wine data, pie, it’s always better with cats,
Bergen surprised with trolls and metal death.

(We say)

Banquet time IASSIST!
Celebrate on the right bank;
Dancing at IASSIST!
That page was purposely left blank ...

Friday's protein breakfast
Coffee, cake, and Danish, the day was then in our hands;
Training data users, challenges of linking,
Using data management plans

Our plenary speaker told us
Open Data Geeks have unfair advantages
More sessions make us wise, now it’s closing wrap-up time,
What an amazing conference it was!

(because)

That was IASSIST!
It was the best one ever,
Next year's IASSIST
See you all in Bergen next year!









IASSIST 2014 conference song

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Sung to the tune of Gordon Lightfoot's  "If You Could Read My Mind"; thanks to San, Paula, Bill, and Vince for their suggestions, and Vince, Dan and Kate for helping to drown out my own voice :) If anyone has a video version of this, send me the link, so I can add it here:


If you could read my data
What a tale these points would tell
At Toronto's IASSIST 40
Data folk began to dwell
At the hockey game
We began to meet
With colleagues and old friends
These meetings never end
Aligning data with infrastructure of research is what it's all about

If you were at this IASSIST
Many fantastic talks you heard
All of the sexy specialists
Seemed to tweet on what they heard
When you reached the talk 'bout the data dude
The seating was all gone
The tweeting would go on
We don't want the talks to end
Because excitement's just too hard to fake

Chuck walked away with the plenary
When the speaker didn't show
Improv -- way to go!
IASSIST's big tent will cover everyone who works with data now
We will show them how
The Steam Whistle banquet was great
Where we could get more beer with tickets
Myron's talk went slightly wrong, his script was gone but he managed to get it back

If you could read my hashtag
You'd have seen some tweets galore
How Justin Hayes raps data
Declare variables not war
Robin's free at last, 'cause her session's done
And Bit Rot Bitter's cool
The tweeting never ends
If you read the twitter feed
You soon will see the many things we do
The talent's always there
We always seem to feel this way
And we've got to say that we really get it
The only thing that seems so wrong
Is the long time before we meet again.


One week to IASSIST 2014!

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It’s a week to go until IASSIST 2014 begins! (If you haven’t registered yet, better get to it!) Here are a few things you might like to know before you get here:

  • If you haven’t looked at them yet, please peruse the “How to get here” and “Local information” pages on the conference website
  • under ‘Visitors’ on the top menu (where you can find a map-based guide to Toronto attractions);

    • How to get here” lists ways to get to the downtown core from the airport;
    • Local information” has links to maps, information on how to get around Toronto, links to weather information from Environment Canada, plus links to guides to restaurants and drinking establishments in and around town.
    • If you’re a baseball fan, the Toronto Blue Jays are playing home games on June 1, 6, and 7; see the June schedule for details.
    • if, at any point, you want to pick up some groceries, there's a huge grocery store -- right next to the Mattamy Centre (site of the Tuesday reception) -- known as Loblaws at Maple Leaf Gardens; check out the 'Wall of Cheese"!
    • if your taste runs to reading, there's an Indigo store (Canada's major bookstore chain) about 10 min from the conference hotel by foot, on Yonge St.

As far as food and drink go, the variety you'll find in the city, even restricted to the downtown area, is nothing short of remarkable; there's even a multicultural food court just down the street from the conference venue. Later this week we'll be adding to the above links a personal guide to eating and drinking establishments prepared by one of our volunteers.

Your Local Arrangements Committee and volunteers will do our best to ensure you have a pleasant and productive stay in Toronto. Please let us now if you have any specific questions. We look forward to greeting you next week for IASSIST 2014!

IASSIST 2013 conference song

Topic:
See video

Many thanks to Kate, Dan, and especially Melanie for this year's bit of silliness. Thanks once again to Lynda Kellam for the video.

(Sung to the tune of "Lili Marlene" If anyone wonders, the connection of the melody with Cologne is that the composer, Norbert Schultze, once studied in Cologne.)

It's 2013 IASSIST, and welcome to Cologne
GESIS has endeavored to make us feel at home
Data innovation was the theme
And wifi problems made the scene
We struggled to communicate
Some tweets might turn up late

Monday was for meetings, workshops the next day
Curation, access, OLAP, and R all made their play
At the reception we all met
The Kolsch we drank helped us to set
The tone for what next came
More walking in the rain

Wednesday was the day when it all really began
Attendance at the talks at Maternushaus to plan
The talks on RDM were cool
As well as Services and Tools
Kristin's duckie charmed the crew,
Sam's rabbit joined in too

Wifi issues carried on, tweets were very few
Posters and pecha kuchas were quite enough to do
Data parachutes were opened, then
We walked to Rheinterrassen
With Spargel on the menu -
'Asparagus' to you

Friday was the day when winding down began
Next year's LAC began to talk about the plan
This year's IASSIST was really great
For next year's 40th you'll wait
Toronto welcomes you
With wifi access too.

iassist 2012 conference song

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My thanks to Vince Gray, Lisa Neidert, and Melanie Wright for help with the lyrics, Melanie for the great guitar accompaniment, and Melanie, Vince, and Kate McNeill for singing along (and thereby drowning out the sound of what passes for my singing voice :)

(Sung, sort of, to the tune of "America the beautiful")

It's 2012 in Washington,
We met for IASSIST;
Unfortunately we're all done,
But memories persist -
     IASSIST oh IASSIST,
     We look forward to you;
     The meetings and the people
     Give us so much to do.

Meetings started Sunday
And all day Monday too;
Workshops took up Tuesday -
Evening reception too.
     Wednesday's plenary began
     Things in a proper way;
     Talks on research management,
     Pecha kuchas filled the day.

Thursday was a special day
Will lots of talks to view;
The boat cruise on a special night -
Eight presidents hove to.
     Wordles, wordles everywhere,
     And metadata too;
     Captain Carrot's data cows
     Make data folks say "mooooo".

On Friday things start winding down -
We all start going home.
The song starts getting written down -
The banner finds a new home.
     IASSISTers, please persist;
     We'll meet you all next year
     In 2013 in Cologne,
     We'll drink the better beer!

IASSIST 2011 conference song lyrics

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Sung to the tune of Bryan Adam's "Summer of '69" :

We all came to Vancouver
in spring 2-0-1-1
IASSISTers gather together
this is gonna be fun!

Day long Admin meeting
Ann skyped in for Constitutional change
and we kept it all to the schedule
Now that was really strange

oh, and when the Canucks won,
the cheering seemed to last forever
and that really set the scene
for the best IASSIST ever
These are the best days of IASISST

****

so many questions that you just can't answer
when metadata isn't standardized
in Japan/Europe/US and Australia
we're building apps to wrangle DDI

We love a plenary speaker
who gets there’s no one in the room who won’t
understand bias and stochastic error
‘cuz Canuck politicians sure don’t!

On the presidential 10K
Bill proved that he could run forever
As he takes up the reign
Down the Hill Bill, it’s now or never
Yours will be the best days of IASSIST

*****

On Thursday our data warrior
Chuck gave a plenary
on the Main Street of infrastructure
where will the social sciences be?

Lynda looks much taller on Twitter
she and others kept us in the know
“Moderately protected” is like “a little bit pregnant”
Tweeters were the star of the show

This boat actually left the pier
and the booze began to flow
San and her two Walters hit the floor
All the data people know that
these are the best days of IASSIST

******
And so it’s been decided
Next year we’ll be in DC
then in Cologne the year after
planned ahead for two out of three!

Next week when we look back
Vancouver seemed to last forever
And if we had the chance
we know we’d always want to be there
It was the best IASSIST of all

-------------------------------------------

Many thanks to our talented musical director (and past President) Melanie Wright, and everyone else who sang and listened; truly the best IASSIST conference song ever!

Odds Are, It's Wrong Science fails to face the shortcomings of statistics

In the March 27, 2010 issue of Science News, this article talks about how "widespread misuse of statistical methods makes science more like a crapshoot". The problem appears to be based in the misunderstanding and misuse of the concept of statistical significance. more...

A *really* secure data center

The May 21 issue of Boing Boing describes the InfoBunker, a "Cold War era government command bunker converted into a data center". I realize that they're not referring to the same kind of data center we mean, but it was kind of fun to read about a data center that has "a self-sufficient power systems (six days' worth of diesel fuel; 17,000 gallons of water (for drinking and fire suppression); military-grade NBC air filtration). It's built to withstand a 20-megaton nuclear blast at 2.5 miles, according to the website, and I can believe it. Your data will be intact even if the rest of the Internet has been vaporized."

Submitted by Walter Giesbrecht

  • IASSIST Quarterly

    Publications Special issue: A pioneer data librarian
    Welcome to the special volume of the IASSIST Quarterly (IQ (37):1-4, 2013). This special issue started as exchange of ideas between Libbie Stephenson and Margaret Adams to collect

    more...

  • Resources

    Resources

    A space for IASSIST members to share professional resources useful to them in their daily work. Also the IASSIST Jobs Repository for an archive of data-related position descriptions. more...

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    Find out what IASSISTers are doing in the field and explore other avenues of presentation, communication and discussion via social networking and related online social spaces. more...