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Visiting Japan: Part 1

So better late then never like they say. This trip was almost 2 months ago, but I’m only now getting to posting about it. Life has been distracting. I was in Japan for 8 days from May 22 to May 30. And I’ll give a quick day by day with some pictures.

This is the first of three posts. The three parts are 1, 2, and 3.

May 22-23

Rice paddies

I traveled for 24 hours straight from Portland to Los Angeles to Tokyo to Kobe. The flight from LAX to Tokyo alone was around 10 hours. It was exhausting, but went pretty well. As we came into to Narita Airport (Tokyo) I say a bunch of “fields” that made me think of coming into Kansas and seeing all the wheat. But it hit me this was not wheat. They were rice paddies. Eventually I made it to my hotel in Kobe.

May 24

This was my first day at FLOPS and it went well. I say some talks and I talked to people. It was interesting. That night was the conference banquet so they loaded us onto a bus and drove us to Arima Onsen where we had some time to wander around a little resort town of sorts and we had a rather fancy meal. I spent my free time walking around on my own. I saw some Shinto shrines and a Budist temple. It was all very beautiful.

I also saw some very large wasps (or some other hymenoptera). The more orange ones were just over an inch I think. The black ones almost twice that.

Dinner was neat. There was a whole selection of interesting items. Some of them I enjoyed. Others not so much. There was also Sake which I definitely enjoyed.

And then after that I made it back to my hotel.

May 25

This was my second and final day at FLOPS and there were more interesting talks. The conference as a whole had a focus on constraint logic programming and how to implement constraint logic languages efficiently. There was some talk of functional languages, but the bulk of the talks were related to logic languages. It was all quite interesting. Also I was the last presenter of the day and I presented a paper written by myself and my adviser (Sergio Antoy) called “Compiling a Functional Logic Language: The Basic Scheme”. The presentation went well. I feel like I advertised the paper well.

The view from the lunch room at FLOPS. This is Kobe. Most of the panoramas in these posts are cylindrical projection. This one is stereographic projection.

After the day of the conference I went out of the town with some other folks from the conference. We had some interesting eggy pancake things with meat in them (I was eating meat in Japan). It was interesting. Then most of the people went home and I went to a bar with a 6ft Frenchman (as you can imagine he stood out in Japan). It was good times. Japanese Whisky, Sake, and Ume-shu.

May 26

Saturday. The conferences was over so I wandered the city. I saw a lot of things. I will not describe them all, but here are a bunch of pictures.

This clock was damaged in 1995 earthquake and was placed here as a memorial it still shows the time of the earthquake.

A camera with legos!!!


A typical alley in Japan.

Another memorial to an earthquake. This is a part of the pier that was stabilized and then left.

Part of the port of Kobe. Mirikan (actually what it is called) pier is on the right.

A boat whose propulsion was based on super conducting magnets and the left-hand rule. Because they could.

A model train festival that happened to be going on in front of the maritime museum on Mirikan pier. This was taken from the deck on the roof of the museum.

A model train. The were just large enough to ride as you can see in the background. The line in the picture above is people waiting to ride the tiny train. I am told my Kyoko that the guys who build these are called “Train Heads”.

After seeing all this stuff I got my self and my luggage to Shin-kobe and got on the Shinkansen (bullet train) to Tokyo to meet Martin.

I was planning to do the entire trip tonight but this is taking longer than I expected. So expect 2 more installments. One for my time hanging out with Martin and Kyoko and Sarah and one for the second conference in Nagoya.

[EDIT: Added picture of Kobe from the FLOPS lunch room.]

Posted in Life (other than code), Travel

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