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Graham Davies

EUROCALL Conference 2007

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I have just got back from the EUROCALL 2007 conference at the University of Ulster, Coleraine - followed by a tour of the North and North West of Ireland by car. This conference was probably one of the most stimulating EUROCALL conferences that I have attended since EUROCALL first became an official professional association in 1993. The keynotes were all good, and all of the regular sessions that I attended were interesting. This year's online "Virtual Strand" was more elaborate than in the previous year. The bloggers were more active and all of the keynotes were streamed and are now in the process of being archived. Several of the regular sessions were captured with the Lecturnity software, and there were three virtual presentations via live chat. A number of podcasts have also been made available. You can catch up with the main Virtual Strand events here:

http://vsportal2007.googlepages.com/

We were blessed with good (for Ireland) weather, entertained by an excellent Irish/Scottish band and a fabulous dancer after the gala dinner, and we danced ourselves to exhaustion at the Ceili. Many of us also managed to fit in a trip to Bushmills Irish Whiskey Distillery and the Giant's Causeway. You can't do that online!

It's great to see Northern Ireland blossoming again. The tourists have returned, and there are signs of an economic boom everywhere. We crossed the border several times, but now the army watchtowers have gone and it's no different from moving from one county into another in the rest of the UK - apart from the changes from miles to kilometers and different road signs.

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