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Farewell Colloquium

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Yesterday we had a special farewell colloquium for one of our professors who’s going to be retired. He’s probably one of the more famous professors here, at least it’s very likely that you’ll find one of his books in any math library. Quite a few of his PhD students, some of which are professors now themselves, came along and one of them along with a former assistant gave colloquium talks.

While this may not be worth mentioning in other departments, we even had proper cake in the break between the talks to celebrate the occasion and one of our professors had prepared a few posters concerning Gauß and his work which he asked for comments on. 2005 is not only Einstein year but also Gauß year, so we’re going to exhibit a few things and those posters are suggestion about what to show. I’ll detail a particularly nice exhibit in the following post.

After the talks many of us went along for dinner which very rarely attracts that many people. The dinner wasn’t too exciting, and sitting around with that many mathematicians for so long can be a bit exhausting – although I was actually sitting at a rather harmless side of the table with PhD students, assistants and some of the younger professors (and also our computer guy, who seems to consider trying out a Mac mini despite definitely being a Linux guy - just because it’s the same price as his diskless tiny Linux clients but it has a graphics card that can drive larger screens digitally).

To relax after this, Jan-Philipp and me decided to go for a drink with just a few others. Two of the other guys are professors now but were assistants at our department at some stage. Actually I attended a seminar by one of them in my second year and found him quite helpful – yet all he remembered of me was a letter that I wrote in my first year, discussing some of the ridiculous things going on in the department and taking the piss of some of the stuff he said back then. Apparently it used to be on the first page of Google’s results for his name a few years ago…

The unfortunate thing was that at some stage those two guys started showing off a bit, ‘discussing’ how much they work, how they prefer giving their lectures without notes, how they’re annoyed by people sending rude e-mails or addressing them with ‘Du’ rather than the polite ‘Sie’ (like ‘tu’ and ‘vous’ in French, both translating to you in English where things are much easier in that respect) and which books you definitely need to read. While this was fun to a large extent and there was some merit to it, it did look like posing to a certain extent and was a bit exhausting…

So after they left we decided to go to yet another place and have a drink to relax…

February 4, 2005, 10:00

Tagged as uni.

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