Bonjour les conférences

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Monday April 15. I added another Independent Film Festival – MSPIFF – to my list (Silk Screen, Telluride, Sundance, Nantucket, Tribeca, Boston…), and enjoyed Bonjour Switzerland, which, I believe, is a strong contender for the Audience Award, a prize similar to the People Choice Award I had funded (through RAGS Foundation) at the (Pittsburgh) Silk Screen Asian American Film Festival, whose winners include Aftershock (China, 2010)Two Weddings and a Funeral (S. Korea, 2012), and Kaaka Muttai (India, 2015).

Wednesday April 17.2024 President’s Lecture  Series talk at CMU (5-6 pm) was worthwhile to attend: Steven Pinker gave a breezy overview of psychological fallacies followed by some open-ended discussion on Academic Freedom, touching on some hot-button topics. Earlier that afternoon, just one floor above, as part of the PQI 2024 event, was the Public Lecture by Robert Schoelkopf, which was also informative and engaging. Both these talks helped me prepare a little bit – Pinker on breeziness, and Schoelkopf on doubling down on Quantum Weirdness – as I was to speak on April 20th at a Tepper Alumni Weekend event on The Second Quantum Revolution. Following these talks, I strolled over to the PQI 2024 dinner at Phipps Conservatory to meet up with colleagues and co-authors, as well as make some new friends.

Friday April 19. It was great to have breakfast with Gad Allon – where we discussed Spinoza, Keirkegaard, Heidegger 😳 – who was the final speaker at our 2024 Spring Semester OM Seminar Series, that included Rouba Ibrahim, Baris Ata, Kuang Xu, Achal Bassamboo, and Soroush Saghafian.

Indeed, as I was finalizing this post, I received this email:

Dear Sridhar,

Thanks for taking the time to meet on Friday, have breakfast together and attend the talk.

I really enjoyed the conversation on research, writing and philosophy, and the discussion during the talk.

It was great to catch up.

Looking forward to meeting again in the upcoming conferences,

Gad

1 comment

  1. Oh, I loved “Two Weddings and a Funeral” (2012). Tina grew on me over the time. I love Korean movies, I’ve seen many.

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