Today I leave for the 2013 International Conference on Frontiers in Education: Computer Science and Computer Engineering (FECS 2013).  This is a conference I’ve attended only once before in 2007.  I’ve taken a look at the program, and it seems interesting.  While big confederated events like this can be overwhelming, I seem to remember that the individual conferences are reasonably separated so it’s likely that it will be similar to the other things I attend.

And yet I find myself not looking forward to it.  For a while I thought it was because I just returned from an extended trip to the UK and haven’t yet been back for a week.  I’m sure that’s part of it, but I decided this morning that isn’t the whole thing.  Since I haven’t gone to FECS very often, I don’t have any idea of the people who will be there.  It’s entirely possible that I’ll know someone, but it’s also possible that I will be heading to a conference filled with strangers.  A hundred plus people I don’t know is a great opportunity for networking, and unlike my graduate school days I enjoy the thought of that.  It’s been a long time since I went to a conference where I didn’t have at least one meal with a friend planned, and I’m realizing today that those connections with friends are a big part of why I enjoy conferences.