Day One of Smalltalks 2008 is over and Andres has a good write-up on the events of the day. Andres mentions “a nasty snafu” in which my laptop was left behind. It’s true. As part of my elaborate preparations, I packed most accessories and cables (including some video recording equipment) separately from the computer to minimize the progressively increasing weight of my carry-on backpack. I was initially pleased with how light the backpack was (given that it included books and magazines for the long flight), but when I got to the airport and prepared to send my computer through security separately I discovered that the computer was not in the backpack!

My long-suffering wife (who had gotten up at 3:30 AM to take me to the airport) spent much of that day trying to find a way to ship a laptop from Portland, Oregon, USA, to Buenos Aires, Argentina, in time for me to use it for the presentation (plus significant amount of last-minute finalizing of the material). When that proved impossible, we started discussing purchase of another machine. Monty had suggested that my wife jump on the next plane to Buenos Aires (another airline would be arriving a few hours after my flight), but my wife said that she would rather not chase me all over the Western Hemisphere and would prefer to end the week with a new computer if we were going to spend that much money.

Anyway, the layover in Atlanta was long enough for me to leave the airport, take the subway to the Apple Store (45 minutes from the airport), and buy a new MacBook. My wife delivered the other computer to my office, where my helpful colleague connected it to the network and worked with me to get it set up for remote access. I was able to VPN to the office, and copy the work-in-progress material to the new computer. 

Unfortunately, that was not the end of the struggle. Unknown to me, Apple does not include the external video adapter cable in the box with the MacBook (it is included in the MacBook Pro), so I was not going to be able to project from my new laptop. I went to the Apple store here in Buenos Aires, and discovered that each Mac has a different plug for the external video, and my version of the MacBook (along with the accessories) was not yet available in Argentina. So, for the half-day tutorial I used someone else’s PC (running Vista) to present my PowerPoint slides and for the final 45-minute presentation (described by Andres) I used Monty’s MacBook Pro. Since I was doing a demo in addition to slides, it was a bit more complex to set up his machine but things turned out just fine.

The following pictures are of Monty’s Keynote, the local support team configuring the network to allow me to VPN to my office (avoiding their outgoing firewall), and a picture Andres took of the group at Thursday night’s social. I’ve put all of the pictures Andres took with my camera on PicasaWeb.

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