Wednesday, October 10, 2007


I'm in Washington, DC, for few days for a conference of the Census State Data Center Network. We're meeting at the Census Bureau's new headquarters in Suitland, but staying at a hotel in northern Virginia, just across Key Bridge (left) from the District.

We took buses from the hotel to Suitland this morning. We were dropped at the main entrance where we all had to make our slow way through security. That took a while and the conference started late. Ultimately, we managed to make up the time and by lunch we were back on schedule.

In the afternoon we had break-out sessions. I was in a conference room trying to understand the higher (for me) math needed to make sense of the Public Use Microdata Sample (PUMS) when the fire alarm went off and we had to join hundreds of Census workers in an orderly evacuation and a less orderly milling-around outside for about half an hour.

I don't think it was a drill, but I never heard what caused the alarm. I wouldn't be surprised if it was my brain short-circuiting when I tried to understand PUMS data.

We got back to the hotel around six this evening. I had time to wander across Key Bridge and take a short photo-walk along the Canal.

Tomorrow, we'll be back out in Suitland. I'll try to keep my brains from shorting-out again.


Matt M. #29 said...

Why are you staying in Roslyn if your meetings are in Suitland?

Mike Mahaffie said...

Good question... Because it's the Census Bureau that organized it? Because it's handy to National Airport? I wasn't seeing any great hotels just adjacent to the big federal campus in Suitland; lots of nail salons, though.

DivineMsN said...

Trust me you don't want to stay anywhere near Suitland. It's called "shootland" for a reason :)Did they take precautions to protect Title 13 data on their way out?

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