It's already a month ago that I was at ESWC2008 (01/06 - 05/06), so the memory of the conference is no longer that fresh. However, I'll try and give a short trip report anyway. Personally, the highlight was obviously winning the best demo award, but of course there was more. For the Smile group, the whole event was a great success, with a total of three accepted full papers, as well as the Konduit demo and workshop papers. In more detail, we had the following contributions:
What else is there to mention?
Of course, one of the most frequently heard sentences during these five days was "Do you have internet? I don't... What a joke, this is supposed to be a Web conference!". The conference hotel's internet infrastructure was completely overwhelmed by the hundreds of nerdy Web scientists, checking their email every five minutes, twittering and doing what not on the Web. Towards the end of the conference, the valiant efforts of the local organisers finally came to something, and a more or less stable connection for most people was in place.
Apropos Web Science: this of course was the topic of one of the panel discussions. Personally, I'd say it's a good idea to bring people from different disciplines and with different methods and points of view together to figure out the Web. However, to say we need a whole new discipline seems to go a bit over the top. But that's just my own two cents.
One event that many people enjoyed were the lightning talks on the last day. This session should definitely have it's own, dedicated time slot! See pictures of the talks here.
Taking place on Tenerife, the weather was obviously very nice. However, one thing that I dislike about conferences in holiday resorts, is the kind of artificial bubble you move around in. Every single building seems to only exist for tourists, every restaurant is for tourists and tourists only, there is nothing genuine about the place.