Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Pendesfera Days 2010 in Vilanova i la Geltrú

Penedesfera is the blogger community of Gran Penedès and now - with now over 700 registered contributors – the biggest and most active of its kind in the whole of Catalonia. June 11-12, we will organise the annual Pendesfera days, and after a first edition in Gelida (Alt Penedès), and a second one in el Vendrell (Baix Penedès) the time has finally to come to Vilanova i la Geltrú (Garraf), more precisely in the main building (VG 1-2-3) of the Escola Politècnica Superior d’Enginyeria de Vilanova i la Geltrú in Av/ Víctor Balaguer, 1.

Here below you will find a translation of the program. Everybody who wants, is welcome to take part - entry is for free, but you do have to sign up in advance. The panel-discussions will be held primarily in Catalan but also in Spanish. If you plan to take part physically, you are adviced to bring equipment so that you can join the comment flow on Twitter. However, thanks to live streaming, you will be able to follow the events and comment from anywhere in the world.

Friday, June 11

17:00 - Opening ceremony of the 3rd Penedesfera Days (Jornades de la Penedesfera) with local dignitaries.

18:00 - Panel discussion: “Does the Internet reinforce citizen activism?”

Participants: Roger Melcior (, Daniel Julià and Anna Fuster (pimpampum), David Torras (IgualadaNeta), Dani Reguera and Jon E. Eguiluz (Colabora Euskadi), Berta Baquer and Renata Piazza (pares i mares del CEIP Turó de Can Mates)
Moderators and organizors: Redall (Gemma Urgell and Ricard Espelt)

19:30 - Concert by the LapTop Orchestra by the music school Escola Superior de Música de Catalunya (ESMUC).

Dissabte 12 Juny de 2010

10:00 - Panel discussion: “Digital content, technologic tools and education”

In which direction do didactic digital contents go?

Participants: Albert Garcia Pujadas (Nikodemo (CEO, Cálico Electrónico), Simon Lee (CEO, Digital Legends), Ramon Barlam, professor at lES Quercus and member of Espurna) and Narcís Vives (professor and CEO, Intinerarium).

Moderator and organizor: Trina Milan (Departament d’Educació de la Generalitat de Catalunya and

11:30 - Coffee Break

12:00 - Panel discussion: “Tourism 2.0”

How to surprise tourists and make them faithful customers through web 2.0. tools

Participants: Albert Barra (initiator of the social network Turismo 2.0 and marketing oriented hotel operator (Hoteljuice), José Antonio Donaire (Director of Institut Superior d’Estudis Turístics de la UdG (INSETUR), Pilar García (Directora of Museu del Ferrocarril de Vilanova i la Geltrú),
Enric López (Director of Master Gestió Estratègica Empreses Turístiques (e-Tourism) EUHT CETT-UB) and Francesc Balagué (through video conference: La Volta al món porta a porta)

Moderator and organizer: Daniel García Peris (Patronat de Turisme de Subirats)

13:30 - A “Penedesfèric” Lunch and opportunity for members from other blogger communities to present their experience.

15:00 - Newton’s Mandarine” - a popular science workshop by Irene Lapuente.

16:00 - Panel discussion: “Do media listen to the audience?"

How is media comsumption changing? Does the audience speak out? And do media listen to it?

Participants: Raül Llimós (Primer Toc at RAC1), Joan Carreras ( and David Navarrete (Catalunya Digital)

Moderator and organizor: Sergi Sabaté,

17:30 - Panel discussion: “The many of faces of innovation in Catalonia”

Innovations made by Catalans and with a direct impact on citizens' lives.

Participants: Jordi Urquijo (CEO, 1d3a): "TV on demand", Javier Galán (S21Sec): "Cyber crime, new trends, new challenges", Sandra Redón (Centre d’excel·lencia de la Generalitat de Catalunya, T-Systems): "Business Intelligence 2.0", Carles Cortada (CIO, Consorci Sanitari de Mollet), Joan Carles Castro (i2Cat): “Health care related innovation and Living Labs”), José Antonio Galaso (CitiLab Cornellà):Innovation space".

Moderator and organizor: Rafael Pardo, (eHealth expert): "What is innovation?"

19:30 Innosfera

A special Penedesfera edition of the monthly event set up by Universitat Oberta de Catalunya, where the focus is on innovation and invited professionals share and debate their knowledge and experience.

Innosfera is co-ordinated by Roberto Carreras and Javier Velilla.

The Penedefera Days 2010 are organized by Penedesfera (a section of Institut d’Estudis Penedesencs) and Escola Politècnica Superior d’Enginyeria de Vilanova i la Geltrú (EPSEVG), with the support of Vilanova i la Geltrú, ADEG, DO Penedès and Fundació puntCat.

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Technorati tags: Penedès, Penedesfera, Vilanova,

Wednesday, 12 May 2010

Bordegassos de Vilanova: The Only Way is Up!

Esparreguera May 2010 Concentració a la plaça Pagesia

We in the castellers team Bordegassos de Vilanova have two unfortunate weekends behind us. The Sunday before last, on May 2, we were supposed to perform in the small village Cabra del Camp (Tarragona), together with Colla Joves Xiquets de Valls. Unfortunately, the organizers had forgotten to organize for an ambulance to be present and discovered that so late that it could not be arranged. Although serious accidents are rare, it would be foolish to build human towers without medical expertise on site, especially so since that would void our insurances for that specific event. Having said that, it takes a lot of people to build human towers – I would estimate that we were some 200 people between the two teams this day - and especially for our team who was a one-hour drive away from home, it created quite some irritation to see the performance cancelled.

Last Sunday, May 9, on the other hand, we only had ourselves to blame for our problems. We simply did not manage to motivate enough of our members to come with us to the town Esparreguera (comarca Baix Llobregat (Barcelona), but at the same time a part of the Penedès wine region) and as a consequence I had to live through my worst day as a bordegàs since I joined the team, in September 2009. A torre de 6 and a pilar de 5 (explanations further down) were our bleak achievements, but what we above all will remember were three attempts (intent desmuntat) to build a 3de7 which were dismantled prematurely since the children in the top found them too unsteady to crown.

While our mood got worse and worse, the other two teams had a really good day. Our hosts, the Castellers d'Esparreguera, successfully assembled and dismantled 4de7 and 5de6, but what really deserves to be mentioned was their 3de7: one of the children in the top almost lost the grip during the dismantling process and that, in turn, made the whole tower wobble. The Castellers d’Esparreguera did not give up but fought to hold the construction together. Truly impressive!

Castellers d'Esparreguera May 2010 "5de6"

The third team, Castellers de Poble Sec from Barcelona, was – at least if you judge by their reactions - even more satisfied with their results: 3de7, 5de6 and 4de6 amb l'agulla.

Castellers de Poble Sec, Esparreguera May 2010 "4de6 amb l'agulla" 1

Castellers de Poble Sec, Esparreguera May 2010 "4de6 amb l'agulla" 2

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If everything goes as planned, this week I will be able to take part in two practice sessions (assaig) and that is good. Bordegassos de Vilanova need to get back on track as a team and our next performance is high profile. On May 16, at 12:30, we will be in the plaça de la Vila - la plaça més castellera - in Vilafranca del Penedès during their May trade fair (Fires de Maig) and build castells together with Castellers de Vilafrancathe best team of Catalonia - and the Xicots de Vilafranca - also they very strong. Come and support us there!

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A brief introduction to the names of Catalonia's human towers:

  • A pilar is a single column or pillar of people, standing on each other's shoulders. A pilar de 5 has five levels.
  • A torre consists of two people per level, except for the top two ones. A torre de 6 has six levels, the top two ones included.
  • Bigger castells have names such as 4de7 (4 by 7, in my translation), where 4 indicates that it consist of four people per level (the top three ones - pom de dalt - excluded) and 7 that it has seven levels (the top three ones included).
  • The dificulty of a human tower can be increased if it is dismantled via a pilar, then called agulla (hence: 4de6 amb l'agulla).
  • Another way to increase the difficulty level is to erect the tower bottom up (aixecat per sota) which means that the upper levels are not climbing, but raised up into position by the base (pinya).
  • In rankings, it is to crown or assemble a human tower (carregar or, alternatively,coronar), which gives the main part of the score, but for full points it also has to bedismantled in a controlled way (descarregar).

Skärpning, Bordegassos de Vilanova!

Esparreguera May 2010 Concentració a la plaça Pagesia

Vi i castellers-laget Bordegassos de Vilanova har nu två misslyckade helger bakom oss. Förra söndagen, 2/5, skulle vi uppträda i den lilla byn Cabra del Camp (Tarragona) tillsammans med Colla Joves Xiquets de Valls. Tyvärr hade organisatörerna glömt att organisera ambulansnärvaro och ingen kunde komma med kort varsel. Även om det sällan sker allvarliga olyckor vore det dumdristigt att bygga mänskliga torn utan medicinskt kunnig personal på plats, extra mycket så eftersom våra försäkringar då upphör att gälla. Men det krävs mycket folk för att bygga mänskliga torn – de två lagen sammantagna var vi kanske 200 människor den här dagen – och är man då en timmes bilresa från sin hemort känns det extra fel om allting ställs in.

Den här söndagen, 9/5, berodde problemen på oss själva. Vi fick inte med oss tillräckligt med folk till staden Esparreguera (i comarcat Baix Llobregat (Barcelona) men samtidigt tillhörande vindistriktet Penedès) och följden blev att jag fick genomleva mitt sämsta uppträdande hittills sedan jag gick med i Bordegassos de Vilanova i september 2009. Ett torre de six och en pilar de 5 (förklaringar längre ner) blev vårt slutresultat, men vad vi kommer att minnas är de tre försöken att bygga ett 3de7 som alla fick nedmonteras eftersom barnen i toppen ansåg dem för ostadiga för att krönas.

Betydligt bättre gick det för värdarna, Castellers d’Esparreguera som utan problem byggde och nemonterade 4de7 och 5de6. Vad som verkligen förtjänar beröm var deras 3de7. Trots att ett av barnen i toppen under nedmonteringen höll på att tappa greppet och det i sin tur fick allt att svaja, så lyckades de hålla strukturen. Mycket imponerande!

Castellers d'Esparreguera May 2010 "5de6"

Det tredje laget, Castellers del Poble Sec (Barcelona), var - av deras reaktioner att döma - ännu nöjdare med sin insats: 3de7, 5de6 och 4de6 amb l’agulla.

Castellers de Poble Sec, Esparreguera May 2010 "4de6 amb l'agulla" 1Castellers de Poble Sec, Esparreguera May 2010 "4de6 amb l'agulla" 2

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Går allt enligt planerna kan jag vara med på två träningar (assaig) den här veckan och det behövs – dels behöver vi komma igen och dels är nästa framträdande ett av de viktigare. Den 16/5, kl 12:30 uppträder vi på plaça de la Vilala plaça més castellera – i Vilafranca del Penedès under deras 'majmässa' (fires de maig), tillsammans med Castellers de Vilafranca - Kataloniens bästa lag – och Xicots de Vilafranca – också de mycket starka.

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En kort förklaring till namnen på kataloniens mänskliga torn:

  • En pilar är en enskild pelare eller kolumn av människor, stående på varandras axlar. Enpilar de 5 har fem nivåer.
  • Ett torre utgörs av två personer per nivå, förutom de två översta. Ett torre de 6 har sex nivåer, de två översta inräknade.
  • Större castell har namn av typen 4de7 (4 gånger 7, i min översättning), där 4:an markerar att de utgörs av fyra personer per nivå (de tre översta – pom de dalt - undantagna) och 7:an att det handlar om sju nivåer(inklusive de tre översta).
  • Svårighetsgraden på ett mänskligt torn ökas om det nedmonteras via en pilar, som då heter agulla (följdaktligen 4de7 amb l’agulla).
  • Ett annat sätt att öka svårighetsgraden är att resa det nerifrån och upp (aixecat per sota) vilket innebär att de övre nivåerna inte klättrar, utan lyfts upp av basen (pinya).
  • I bedömningssammanhang är det att kröna ett torn (carregar, alternativt coronar) som ger huvuddelen av poängen, men för full poäng krävs också en kontrollerad nedmontering (descarregar).
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Technorati tags: Barcelona, Castellers, Katalonien, Penedès, Valls, Vilanova,