One of the things I’ve enjoyed most about the past two or three years is the way that I’ve found myself drawn into the computing education community. I should clarify that statement a bit, of course, since there are multiple communities. There are people who attend each conference regularly, and if the conference is small enough it’s fairly easy to see familiar faces. But there is overlap between conferences, even when those conferences aren’t organized by the same groups. One side effect of having gone to multiple conferences each year, and conferences sponsored by multiple groups, is that I get to see that overlap.
Developments in the past few weeks have made me think about the people whose paths I have crossed and recrossed. I was contacted today by a student I met at SIGITE two years ago because he’s going to start attending DePaul as a graduate student and wants to get together to say hello when he arrives in Chicago. I found out a few weeks ago that a collaborator of mine, whom I met at the SIGCSE Symposium a few years ago, will also be serving on the conference committee for ITiCSE in 2013. I just learned that a fellow SIGCSE Board member was chosen (by someone else and anonymously until today) to work on a panel proposal for the SIGCSE Symposium in 2013. I’m fortunate because at SIGCSE 2013 I’ll continue a now three-year tradition of having dinner with someone I met while interviewing for jobs in the late 90s. And I’ll get to see someone I met at ITiCSE 2012 when I travel to Calgary in October for SIGITE 2012.
It’s fun to think of all the connections I’ll renew at each conference, and for that matter, all the new ones I’ll make as time goes on.