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Budapest conference 2007 - Feedback
Thread poster: Csaba Ban

Csaba Ban  Identity Verified
Hungary
Local time: 09:38
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
Apr 26, 2007

I'd like to encourage all conference participants to share their impressions, ideas and experience with each other and the Proz.com community at large.

This thread could work as a "liveblogging" exercise: members of the community will continuously update their reports and accounts of the Budapest conference.

Topics? Just about anything. The town, the country, meeting fellow Prozians, feedback on individual sessions, powwow reports, etc.

This topic is open for posting for conference participants only - but everybody can read it.

Que la fete commence!

Csaba

[Edited at 2007-05-03 11:37]

[Subject edited by staff or moderator 2010-06-15 00:16 GMT]


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Lise Smidth  Identity Verified
Austria
Local time: 09:38
German to Danish
+ ...
Where should I upload photos? May 2, 2007

Hi,

thanks again for the wonderful days in Budapest

We made some photos that we would like to share with you all - where would be the best place to upload them?

Maybe on the powwow-sites?


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Heidi Kerschl  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 08:38
English to German
Csaba takes it to the next level May 2, 2007

Edinburgh was great, but Budapest seriously raised the stakes for what we might expect of a conference. Everything was well thought out, clearly communicated, the sessions were informative, the technology worked.

All you could hope for in respect of conference organisation, and then Csaba gave us more: Excellent directions and background information about Budapest, a wonderful social programme that ended with most of us on the dancefloor.

What is it about ProZ confercences that makes them so vibrant, so buzzing? I guess it's the people behind them like Csaba, Rebekka, Katharina et al, and the rest of us. Csaba's superior organisation skill have certainly brought out the best of Budapest (those little pastry things at coffee time were to die for), and of us presenters and everyone at the conference. THANK YOU!!!

-Heidi


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Csaba Ban  Identity Verified
Hungary
Local time: 09:38
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
photos, etc. May 2, 2007

I will find out soon how to best upload and share photos.

Dear Heidi, I do appreciate your positive feedback, and I'm glad you liked the conference, but for people who post anything in the future, I'd like to point out that I did not mean this thread to be a forum of personal praises.

You came to praise the event, not to praise me.

cs.


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Steve Yates  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:38
German to English
+ ...
My first but not last May 2, 2007

I fully echo Heidi's praise for all those who made Budapest 2007 such a wonderful event. I was really looking forward to my first Proz conference and I was not disappointed. As Csaba says, though, he is not simply looking for praise. Let's be honest about what made it so great but also what could have been better.

On the social side, I know that many of us felt disappointed with Friday night's powwow at the Birdland, where they were simply unable to cope with the number of people and all the separate bills. The experience at Grand Cafe Oktogon was much better after the initial rush hour (or two). The Danube cruise was an inspired idea and a resounding success.

I was also among those who had a few words of complaint about some of the presentations. I am reluctant to criticise presenters who volunteer to speak in front of large audiences, not to mention not in their native language, but I think that they could have made it an easier and more relaxed experience for themselves by engaging with the audience more, even if it meant not completing the presentation that they had prepared. Overall, however, I may have come away without getting everything I wanted from the sessions but they still gave me some great ideas on areas that I need to improve on.

Let me finish by saying that I feel privileged to be part of such a special community. Thanks to all my new friends who made it such a great time for me. See you at the next conference!


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Marguerite Knox  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 08:38
French to English
+ ...
an unforgettable weekend May 2, 2007

Like Steve, (wish I'd had more time to talk to you by the way, Steve, next time : )) it was my first proz conference and I arrived there with just a little apprehension - but the friendly, relaxed atmosphere meant that it was easy to mingle and make new friends. I met and bonded with many delightful - and delightfully diverse - people.
By the way, I would like to praise the Benczur hotel management and staff, they did a fantastic job.
With regard to pow-wow venues, Birdland was indeed disappointing with waiting times of up to 1 hour just to get a drink, and Grand Cafe wasn't great either, service was better but food was markedly worse. Having said that, I know it must be difficult to find a venue suitable for such large numbers. The Danube trip was wonderful from every point of view, a truly magical evening.
Regarding the sessions, the highlight for me was the Mats and Silvia double act which was both hugely entertaining and really useful, and the talk on Hungary (Andras Torok I think) was also witty and genuinely informative. Otherwise, there was much valuable content in the other sessions but not all the presenters were as skilled at holding an audience as the speakers mentioned above. Maybe this comes with experience. I salute their courage in any case, it must be a daunting experience.
I think what I took away most of all from the Budapest conference was renewed enthusiasm and pride in my profession, which will sustain me in the long hours in front of my computer screen!
Thanks to all who worked so hard to make this great conference a success.


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Effie Emmanouilidou  Identity Verified
Greece
Local time: 10:38
English to Greek
Photo posting May 2, 2007

Hello to all,

I just wanted to post a quick note saying that I have uploaded my photos to this address: http://picasaweb.google.com/emmanef/BudapestProzConference2007.

I have to say that I had a great time in Budapest, even though I did not manage to see that much of it. I have to return! But, it was great because I got to see old friends (from the Krakow conference) and meet so many new ones.

I have posted my comments on a few sessions, but unfortunately I cannot post anything on sessions (such as MemoQ) that I attended but had not signed up for. Maybe the technical staff can do something about that?

The organization was great (as we have said many times) and we should really praise the Benczur staff for being able to cater to such a large group very efficiently.

For the rest, I will agree with the previous posts, about the restaraunt (at the Oktogon) and some of the sessions. The one I enjoyed the most was Web usability and design.

Many thank to all for such a great conference.

I think that the informality of these conferences are what make them such a success. Even if the sessions are not all we expect them to be (due to our preconceived ideas, perhaps) it is very easy to "network", meet interesting people, exchange ideas and just have fun.

Tracey from the USA (living in Italy) made the suggestion that the conference should last 3 days. She noted that after most of us got to meet each other, we had lots to talk about and that is how the Interpreting session came about. Her logic was that if we had more time to meet each other informally, we could get out more from our conversations (I hope Tracey I got your point and I am not distorting your idea!). However, I believe this would raise the cost of everything.

I hope to meet you all again at the next conference!

Effie


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Justine Sherwood  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 08:38
Dutch to English
+ ...
Conference feedback May 2, 2007

I also had a great time, and despite what has been said about the sessions, I seem to have got lucky, since all the ones I went to were good, although not necessarily relevant to my work. I would never be able to stand up in front of a group of people and give a presentation so I take my hat off to anyone who can!

I think it would be a good idea in the future to do a "call for papers" in good time before the conference, so that the conference organisers can review the speaker´s topic, experience, etc. Also as far as giving feedback goes, this is not exactly anonymous and may prevent many from saying what they really think. Any other conferences or training sessions I have attended have always provided a feedback form to be filled in directly after the session. It´s anonymous and the speaker gets to see straightaway whether there is room for improvement or not. Just an idea for next time...although it would be more paperwork.

Personally, I loved the city, and if I had known it was that great I would have made plans to stay longer. So I guess I´ll have to go back!
Anyway I will definitely be going to the next conference if it´s geographically viable. Regardless of the session content, you can learn so much just from talking to other colleagues at meals, coffee breaks, etc.. I think most of us are alone at home all day and just knowing that others deal with the same issues as you do, and how they deal with them is a great help.


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Austra Muizniece  Identity Verified
Latvia
Local time: 10:38
Member (2004)
English to Latvian
+ ...
Well... May 2, 2007

I could write all night long - how much I enjoyed my first conference and all the great people I met. To put it simply - I am having a hard time being back in Riga and getting back to daily life:).

Thanks to Csaba and all the participants for making this the highlight of the year.


Austra


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Natalia Elo  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 09:38
Member (2004)
English to Russian
+ ...
ATA exam sitting May 3, 2007

I would like to give a special thanks for organising ATA exam sitting. It is a really precious opportunuty for those, who live in the country, where none of one's working languages is official.

Now I just have to wait and see, whether I pass it or not;)

Fantastic atmosphere, wonderful people, beautyful city - what else one needs to gain an energy to work another year alone.

Warm thanks
Natalia

[Edited at 2007-05-03 13:22]


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Jutta Scherer  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 09:38
English to German
+ ...
Very rewarding experience! May 3, 2007

Hi everybody,

This was my first ProZ.com conference, after countless conferences during my life as an employee (so I had a pretty good basis for comparison) and I must say I was quite impressed.

Csaba did a superb job in organizing everything and being available for any extra questions or concerns, and the program he put together was really interesting. Although I have worked in translations forever and many of the issues addressed were not new to me, I was able to take away something valuable from each and every one of the sessions I attended (and I''m not talking about silver spoons...).

I agree that some of the sessions could have been more interactive in style, and some of the presenters - if they do this on a regular basis - might consider getting some presentation coaching. But all of them offered useful content, and I salute everyone with the courage to stand up and speak to a crowd. I couldn't- I'd be a nervous wreck for weeks before. Well, not everybody can be a Henry Dotterer...

Last but not least: So many nice people! No doubt that's the best experience of all. You make new contacts, some of which might develop into joint projects, and maybe even new friends. That's always worth while! What a super community this is.

Sunny greetings from Munich to everybody

Jutta


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Anne Francescangeli
France
Local time: 09:38
English to French
A great experience ! May 3, 2007

This was my first Proz conference. Since I could only attend one day, I met few people and missed many sessions but I found it very useful to be there anyway and I hope I'll be able to attend the next conference (in the South of France, then ?).
I found the "Source text preparation" session disappointing, but the rest was really interesting. Thank you !

[Edited at 2007-05-03 11:16]


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Csaba Ban  Identity Verified
Hungary
Local time: 09:38
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
powwow venues May 3, 2007

Finding the right places for large groups of people is not that easy. And, as it turned out, even the ones I found were disappointing to many people.

The two most important factors for choosing the places was proximity to the hotel and seating capacity.
I know quite a few good restaurants in Budapest, but none of them would be accomodating for large groups.

For Friday, for example, I thought of two specific ones, but both of them would have required a hefty downpayment out of pocket, and if the total consumption had not reached that level, they would have simply kept the downpayment. Obviously I could not choose these places.

Just yesterday (Wednesday) I went to a restaurant deep in the Buda hills, where I had perhaps the best meal ever in any restaurant in any country (OK, one of the best). But quality comes at a price. For powwow venues I was trying to find places where prices are not prohibitive to half of the crowd.

Another difficulty was that I could not foresee just how many of us would be there on any powwow evenings. There would have been quite a few restaurants available to offer high quality buffet dinner, but for this I should have collected funds in advance, etc.



And just a quick note: I just set up a powwow page for August, for the annual Sziget music festival. If you liked Budapest now, you will like it even more if you come back in August.

Csaba


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Sergei Tumanov  Identity Verified
Local time: 10:38
English to Russian
+ ...
what can I say? May 3, 2007

I am not a writer, I am a reader, but still I'll try to say something in the language of figures:

1 cruise on a boat enjoyed
2 days of sessions survived
5 evening parties/powwows attended
32 dances danced
47 kilometres walked (trust me, I had a gps tracking device with me :0) )
100 new friends met
and last, but not least - 3.4 kilos of weight lost :0)

GREAT EVENT - THANKS TO PROZ!!!


[Edited at 2007-05-03 14:39]

[Edited at 2007-05-03 15:22]


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Andreea Ciurea  Identity Verified
Romania
English to Romanian
+ ...
Conference photos and comments May 3, 2007

Hello everybody!

I finally managed to upload some of the photos I've taken. You can find them at:
http://picasaweb.google.com/Traduxand/ProZ_Conference_2007

About the conference:
I enjoyed it very much from the beginning until the end. I would like to congratulate Csaba for the good job he has done, and all the sponsors, even if we had to wait a long time for the order in the restaurants. I don't believe this could have been avoided. I liked very much the walking tour and the cruise on the Danube, as well as the late-night tour after the cruise (those who attended know what I'm talking about).

I found interesting the sessions I attended, especially the ones about website usability and how to make a dictionary.

I feel that these sort of events make the world seem smaller and thus distances between us seem to vanish. It's a great feeling to know that there are real people behind nicknames and companies and that you share a lot of things in common with them.

And last but not least...GREAT FOOD!! I think I'll pack my things and move to Budapest I haven't eaten this well ever since I left my home town.

From Brussels,
Andreea


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