Participant Testimonials

Nov 28 - Dec 03, 2010

This is a memorable experience in a very well organized and beautiful surrounding. In fact, I have enjoyed the experience so much that I plan to submit a proposal as well. The scientific program was high quality, and BIRS an excellent avenue for workshops and meetings. Except for the little cold, it is perfect.

Akram Aldroubi Mathematics, Vanderbilt University

Superb conference, outstanding speakers, and very timely scientific content. It's early to say if collaborations will emerge, but they probably will. The conference strengthened contacts with a few people, and this will encourage further discussions. It was good to hear about the latest results. After my presentation, one participant suggested a stronger version of a probability lemma that we use in one of our papers. This opened up a new theoretical direction for me and my graduate student. We now have a more complete view of the existing results in that field (probability in Banach spaces and Rademacher chaos). We will know how to continue looking for those results, and participate in this sub-field ourselves. I also met many important people whom I would otherwise not have met. I advertised for an open postdoc position, and some participants suggested candidates for the job ...

Laurent Demanet Assistant professor
Mathematics, MIT

... my stay at BIRS was simply wonderful. The concept of BIRS is ingenious; at conferences people disperse at the evenings and get to interact much less than at BIRS, where they share the meals and the living room with the wonderful beer selection. Interaction between the participants is much more intense, once they are "confined" to smaller premises. Also, doing science "on demand" simply does not work. The best way to go is the BIRS way: you just make the environment conducive and things then happen spontaneously. I wish we had such a facility in Australia, where, I feel, the money is spent in a much more luxurious but far less efficient way. No wonder Canada is so much ahead of us in science and technology. I was also impressed that the premises are low key (shared bathrooms work as good and save money!) but extremely comfortable with exactly what people need. The food was lavish, and my "only complaint" - actually my wife's complaint - is that I gained 3 kg, everything was so tasty! The staff were extremely friendly and helpful, especially the lady who took care of us and whose name escapes me at the moment. Also, the number of the participants is just right - large enough to meet many colleagues and small enough to be intimate and coherent. So no ideas how to improve anything - you guys are just doing everything in the best possible way. I hope there is no cost cutting madness in Canada - it would be a tragedy to ruin such a wonderful center by saving a few thousands, please resist politician's pressure to save money, scientists need BIRS!!!

Aleksandar Ignjatovic School of Computer Science and Engineering, University of New South Wales

The primary impact on my research at this point, just a week after the workshop, is a better appreciation of the work being done in areas closely related to mine. It will take 1/2 year to see whether the ideas and problems collected during the workshop will result in concrete collaborations and publications, but the workshop certainly brought up a number of interesting directions and potential collaborations.

Jorg Peters CISE, University of Florida

Everything was very good, the facilities, location, workshop, staff. First class.

Ahmed Zayed Mathematical Sciences, DePaul Univeristy