SPUG: Location scouting report

Andrew Sweger andrew at sweger.net
Mon Mar 15 16:06:03 CST 2004

I went and took a look at a couple potential meeting places today at lunch
time. Here's what I found. More comments at the end...

University Heights Center

(University District at University Way and 50th St)

Features: chairs, large meeting rooms, off-street parking, easy access
          from I-5, great neighborhood for food (right across the street
          from Cedars)

Lacks: Internet access, data projector

Requires: a signed "contract", payment in advance, cost $35.00 per hour
          (their hours are measured in units of 55 of our minutes)

There's no way we'd get a room for tomorrow night, but future third
Tuesday's of the month can be scheduled through the end of the year (they
were available as of my visit this afternoon). So, if no one showed up for
a meeting, someone is left holding the bag (with no money in it). If
someone breaks something, whoever signed the form will have some
explaining to do. And so on.

Espresso Vivace

(Capitol Hill on Denny at Broadway)

Features: a few chairs, small meeting room, great neighborhood for food,
          free WiFi Internet access, awesome espresso

Lacks: parking, data projector

Requires: putting your group name and time on a calendar on the wall

There's no way we'd get the room for tomorrow night because it's already
booked. We're too late. The place is a little hard to have a group
conversation in (harsh accoustics, music playing). It's also difficult to
find, even on foot, unless you know where to look. They don't want
anything in return for using the place other than your well deserved
patronage (see postscript).

(Sorry, Richard)

Other comments:

Short of someone screaming Eureka! in the next hour or two, I think I'm
cancelling this meeting. We tend to have really poor turnout when there
isn't enough time for folks to schedule their evening and transportation
(which is hard to do if you don't know where you're going). And I don't
want to sit around doing nothing if folks can't show up.

This may be the first time SPUG has *not* had a monthly technical meeting
in six years (as of tomorrow, the "real" sixth anniversary of SPUG). Or
wait, maybe there was the ocassional cancellation around the thickest

P.S. - Regarding Espresso Vivace: based on their website, I got the
impression these folks were really full of themselves and the stuff David
Schomer has done to advance the art of espresso. Maybe he has and maybe he
hasn't. But what I can tell you is that what goes on at that place is
clearly the result of a hacker. The fans bolted onto the back of the bean
grinders, spliced into power cords hooked up to a digital timing unit, and
the digital temperature monitoring equipment looks like it's out of a lab.
It's all got the traditional marks of an engineer-by-day or someone who
just thinks like one. They clearly enjoy what they do. And they make some
way fancy little cups of espresso. Very tasty. Oh, sure. I'm still buzzed.

Andrew B. Sweger -- The great thing about multitasking is that several
                                things can go wrong at once.

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