Wednesday, February 10, 2010

As luck would have it...

the biggest nanotechnology conference/expo in the world (at least according to the organizers) is happening in Tokyo Big-Sight next week. This Big-Sight place is a mother of a exhibition center, precariously perched on 4 inverted pyramids. Check it out:
I wonder what the inside looks like?

The venue is located on Odaiba, which is an artificial island off the coast of Tokyo, but now is pretty much a metropolis in its own right.

Anyway, so my boss told me about this and asked if I wanted to go, so of course I said yes. I enjoy a good nanotechnology conference as much as the next bloke, and this whole getting-paid-to-go-on-business-related-fun-travel-experiences is new to me, and its a development I really quite enjoy. WIN (Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology) is going to be there (I heard this from the horse's mouth, more on that in a bit), so I'll get to see some friendly Waterloo faces as an added bonus. Tons of graduate schools, big powers in industry, and national nanotechnology institutes will be in attendance, so I intend to use the many hours on the schedule devoted to "networking" to their full advantage.

So one day off work next week, awesome. Then my boss tells me that he got an email about a day of nanotechnology seminars being put on by the Canadian embassy in Tokyo, the day before we had planned on going to this Nanotech 2010 expo. I really don't know where Saita-san gets all his information, but they're remarkably informed, or hes just on a number of very broad mailing lists. I check out the seminar roster, hoping that there will be someone from Waterloo, but unfortunately they're most all from NanoQuebec, and a couple from Concordia U. Saita-san says "We already got one day to go to the expo next week, so I'll ask Sugoi-san (aka. Dr. Amazing) if we can go to this, but he might have a problem".

Well Dr. Amazing lived up to his name, and now we had two days off work next week. In an amusing anecdote, Saita-san called up the Embassy asking them if it was okay for me to come to the seminar day. He gets off the phone and walks up to me:

"Excuse me?" (hes always ruthlessly polite), "They are very happy!" He says.

"Whos very happy?" I reply.

"The.... あの.... The Canadian government, the Canadian government is very happy to have you come!" he stammers, "No, thats not right..."

I proceeded to laugh nearly uncontrollably.

Also, I emailed a certain director of a certain Waterloo Nanotechnology Institute asking if he was coming to Tokyo to hang out. I was expecting a professor-like one word response, but instead he was a champ and emailed me his itinerary, and invited me to come to an event with NIMS (Japanese National Institute for Materials Science) and chill with him and the Canadian Ambassador to Japan. How awesome is that? Turns out Francq is coming too, along with 8 Waterloo nano researchers.

I'm betting on Tam being there. Its goina be a party.

1 comment:

  1. I am once again incredibly jealous. The people at IFCI live in underground with their fuel cells and all.