Purely a figment of your imagination

What amuses, annoys, concerns or otherwise interests me – Noodlemaz


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QEDcon 2016

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Part of this year’s goodie bag – a QED sticker to adorn whatever you fancy

After about 13 hours of sleep post-QED, I started to write some words about it!

6 years in a row. A strange feeling walking back into a hotel room like one I stayed in 3 years ago, but quickly settling into familiarity, largely because of all the friendly faces to see and hugs to give/receive.

I haven’t been to many conventions in my time, but of those few, this skeptical event has to be the best by a long way.

Not just because the organisers are very talented and kind people I’m proud to call friends, or the consistently excellent, approachable and affable speakers, or because fellow attendees are a joy to be around (in all states of sobriety and so far from it). All of that and more.

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QEDcon 2015

As ever, the opening video didn’t disappoint – congratulations to all whose hard work made this tweaked Left Behind trailer funny and so technically impressive:

QED is my Christmas; or, what I imagine Christmas to be like for people who actually enjoy it. My family now is smaller than it was, and we do things our own way, so it’s better – but I’ve never been much of a fan. QEDcon is where I spend time with my chosen family, or most of them at least!

Topping 550 people in its 5th year, it had the same friendly, warm, welcoming and highly intoxicated atmosphere it always has. Continue reading


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QEDcon 2014

My QED write-up this year is extremely late but I’ve backdated it so you’ll never know, mwuahahaha. Oh.

qedconAs ever, it was a fun, friendly, fascinating, inebriated weekend with the new venue (more on that later) full of lovely people whom I very much look forward to seeing more of next year (and throughout the year, for those who live near-ish by).

The speakers were fantastic as expected and the new addition of the Skepticamp during the first day as people arrived was well-received. It’s a great opportunity for people to showcase their talks on subjects they care about to a receptive skeptical audience – so if you’ve got one brewing, hopefully it will be back next year!

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LiftGate: QEDcon2013

qedconHello everyone.

So you know before we get going, some of this is meant to be tongue-in-cheeck, mainly because I wanted to make use of a pun. It’s also got little serious bits in it and partly it’s because I just got home from QED and I need a bit more of it in my life before I let it go for another year…

Also I haven’t been blogging much lately, I don’t know why. Haven’t been inspired, also busy with new job(s) and imminent moving house! I didn’t write a post about QEDcon 2012 because I was mega-stressed with thesis-writing at the time (nearly couldn’t attend because of it) but this year I shall follow from the 2011 posts:

I love QED

As does everyone I speak to who’s been. This was its third year and it certainly lived up to expectations based on the last two. I’d looked forward to it since I left in 2012; extremely tired on the Sunday evening, I slept through the whole train journey back to Euston. Cleverly, this year I booked the room for Sunday night too – to anyone who can afford a bit of Monday off and the extra expense, I highly recommend this!

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QEDcon: Day 2

So I was going to do a couple more updates yesterday but power sockets weren’t really forthcoming so in the end I just tweeted ’til my phone died! Check out our room-mate Tom’s phonecasts for lots of exciting insights.

Marsh killing time until 10:23am!

We have just participated in the 10:23 demonstration, 2011 – we overdosed on some 31C belladonna pills (below). Sugary! Helping some with their hangovers (I think I’m on a pleasant little sugar high. Others are using the leftovers to sweeten their coffee).

Here’s a video from James, already! Edit: do see this excellent video account from Token Skeptic podcast, which has some good crowd shots, a lot of Marsh’s entertaining time-filling speech (including fantastic hatemail from homeopaths) and the big event itself.

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QEDcon: Day 1

qedconThis weekend I’ve come to Manchester, for the first time ever, to QEDcon!

It’s just kicked off and it’s all very exciting. George Hrab is our host all day and Bruce Hood has now taken the stage.

Our hostel is pretty good – I’m staying with 7 nerdy guys (aren’t they lucky!) and actually, having remembered my ear plugs, slept ok!

It’s surprisingly warm up here; every opportunity, the fact we’re in THE NORTH is mentioned. It’s also raining – we did not expect that at all.

The main hall is impressive (will put some photos up later!) but Ian has pointed out that the chandelier is flickering and now that’s all I can see. Alex has also stolen my twitter, while I ran to the bathroom, and virtually assaulted Rhys. But I am using his netbook, so fair enough I suppose.

There is also a very authentic model Dalek in the corner.

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