It’s become more and more difficult for me to travel to conferences. With family, teaching and other work responsibilities (for those who don’t know, I’ve taken on a <a href=”http://cyber.umd.edu”>new role</a> recently), and work-related travel besides conferences, I find it just too onerous and disruptive to get away. Sadly, for example, I missed Crypto last year for the first time since 1999.
I’m not teaching this semester, so perhaps things will change a bit. This week I am attending (part of) the third <a href=”http://realworldcrypto.wordpress.com/”>Real-World Cryptography workshop</a>. The workshop seems to have become a big success, with over 400 registrants last I heard — that is, roughly the same number of attendees as (or even slightly more than) Crypto or Eurocrypt. What explains its popularity? There are a couple of obvious possibilities, including the location (last year at Stanford, this year in NYC)
and the free registration. Somehow the workshop has generated lots of “buzz”; the fact that it is not an academic workshop probably helps attract a lot of people outside academia, or in areas related to (but not directly in) cryptography.
I’m here only through today, and I’ll try live-blogging the talks (at least until my battery runs out!)