The 2011 edition of the Combinatorial Potlatch was yesterday at Seattle University, which I organized along with Nancy Neudauer. David Neel handled all of the local arrangements.

William Stein gave an overview of Sage, with some combinatorial tidbits. There were the usual “oohs” and “aahs” when he generated a random matrix and then produced its LaTeX code in one extra step. Josh Laison gave a very nice talk on obstacle numbers of graphs with great visuals and an on-the-fly clicker change in mid-talk. Peter Winkler wrapped up with more great visuals (cartoons, almost!) for an entertaining talk about a cop pursuing a drunk on a graph.

It was nice to see some new faces, such as Shannon Overbay over from Spokane, and some regulars from farther afield, such as John Gimbel down from Alaska.

I never have any graduate students to supervise, but many of my students go on to a graduate degree. Sometimes they even get their PhD in combinatorics. And both were present for the Potlatch. David Neel took the UPS combinatorics course the first time it was offered and studied under Bogart at Dartmouth, while Jane Butterfield did a summer research project with me and is finishing up her thesis in graph theory at the University of Illinois. Photo below, and more from the conference are here.