Let’s do the halfnarp

Placing lectures into time slots is the most crucial part of constructing a solid Fahrplan. Some speakers like presenting early in the morning, while some entertainment sessions belong to the night program for obvious reasons. That’s the easy part.

But minimizing potential collisions between events is an art, as we’ve learnt over the past years. Sometimes, we underestimate the interest in certain events or fail to anticipate two lectures’ attracting a highly similar crowd.

Such collisions can cause quite some frustration. Imagine not being able to attend one of two (or even two of three) highly anticipated lectures just because we put them all into the same time slot. So this year, we kindly ask you for help in balancing our Fahrplan according to your interests.

We have created a little service called halfnarp, which allows a glimpse at our preliminary outline. All we ask you to do ist pick lectures that you’re interested in. Later, you can even refine your choice to give us a more precise picture of your interests. Also note that not all lectures have been re-confirmed by their speakers yet, so the list is due to change over the next days.

With this data, we will apply all kinds of fancy statistics to minimize the conflicting concurrency problems in our Fahrplan. Since we know that the data will be highly biased, we will not consider absolute numbers, but only positive correlations.

The halfnarp project is open source and – apart from a random uid to later identify you (if you like) – all our server learns about you is the integer array of lecture IDs you submit. If the Fahrplan app developers’ time allows it, you may even later import your selection into your apps.