Sunday, April 29, 2012

DISC 8 Denver (24 April)

The Denver DISC was held on the 40th floor of the Encana Tower, with a magnificant view of the Rocky Mountains front range in the distance. Attendees included Ken Larner (who had the ghastly job of reviewing/editing my DISC book), Brad Artman, Dan Wisecup (famous for the classic residual statics paper) and Brian Pluemer of Schlumberger.

Pluemer was one of a cadre of Schlumberger engineers doing professional MS degrees while I was at CSM finishing up my PhD. These guys had been around the world and knew how to get things done. There are many great stories associated with Pluemer et al., but I will just tell a short one. With Brian and the others I went to an Ore Digger football game. The CSM facility was quaint by today's standards where even a high school team stadium can seat 20,000. With several of the SLB guys we sauntered up to the ticket gate, merely a break in the 4 ft chain-link fence serving as security around the bleachers. We had a washtub full of ice and a beer keg. The ticket guy said "You can't bring that in here." Pluemer thought about it for a second and responded, "What if we walk it a few yards behind you and hand it over the fence to our buddies while you keep taking tickets?"  "No Problem." We got the tub and passenger up to the stands where it was wrapped in a coat with a CSM ball cap over the tap. My memory is fuzzy, but I think Prof. Hadsell was sitting next to us and enjoyed a beverage.

Thanks to everyone for many lively discussions and to Encana for a great venue and million dollar view.

********* Feedback ***************

Hello Chris- 

I had the good fortune of attending your DISC class here in Denver last week. Thank you so much for it! I found it uncommonly engaging and with the right balance of being approachable yet challenging. It made me wish to take a class from you.

You mentioned the fieldcamp you are involved in. I assume you mean the YBRA camp? Are you familiar with the CSM Geophysics fieldcamp? (I don't what form it took in 1989 and anyway as a PhD student you might not have had much contact with it.) I'm spearheading GXT/IONs involvement in that because I just love it. Like YRBA, the students live in the field and survey a given area using most geophysical methods: magnetic, electrostatic, gravity, deep seismic (using vibrators lent by Veritas and an acquisition system donated by Sercel), shallow "hammer" seismic, well logging. What makes the CSM camp special is that they go to a different area every year, and solve real-world local problems. For a while for instance they were investigating hydrothermal processes in the Arkansas valley between Buena Vista and Poncha Springs. Prof. Mike Batzle ably manages it using his "organized chaos" method. As he says "It is where we turn students into Geophysicists".

I just thought I'd mention it, maybe there is some way you and he could collaborate or share experiences. Unfortunately many R&D or academic people are uninterested in the more practical aspects of where their data comes from. We others need to stick together... 

Also kudos for the shout-out to OpendTect! I hope they succeed and prosper. It would be good for the industry. 

 Hans Ecke 
R&D Geophysicist 
ION Geophysical 
GX Technology

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