> A quick raw search on flight prices from Frankfurt, Germany, San
> Francisco, USA and even Taipei, Taiwan, seem to suggest that the two
> most plausible cities for an Australian bid would be Sydney and
> Melbourne (I also plugged in Canberra and Perth, for comparison's
> sake).

Yep, Sydney and Melbourne are definitely the two most reachable
Australian cities for all possible participants (both international &
local). Both would be good, and there are plus and minuses of each,

* Plus: trams make getting around relatively easy, and there's a skybus
from the airport to Southern Cross station, but Minus: it's a bit
confusing to then get the tram from the bus stop, if you've never done
it before.
* Plus: Uni Melb has a good central location, and has dorm rooms
on-campus, assuming it's available & the price is okay.
* Plus: the night markets make a good evening activity.
* Possible minus: in July/August, Melbourne might potentially not have
the best weather?

* Minus: Sydney's international airport arrivals sucks, especially the
arrivals hall with the long queues as they x-ray scan every bag, plus
the transport out of the airport sucks (queues for taxis, expensive
trains, overpriced car park fees, etc). No idea how Melbourne
international arrivals compares, since I have never disembarked an
international flight in Melbourne.
* Plus: Darling Harbour is a great conference venue, and some of the
unis could also be good.
* Possible minus: Is there nearby accommodation, and if so at what cost
to attendees?
* Plus: It's not too hard to come up with activities that are likely to
appeal to international visitors (e.g. trip to Taronga Zoo: ride a ferry
on the harbour, get a great view of the harbour bridge + opera house,
feed a kangaroo, hold a koala, be frightened by an emu, etc).

Both cities would be absolutely fine, IMHO, in terms of being reachable
to wide base of attendees & providing suitable venues and activities.
Really comes down to what the local people are willing & able to do
towards organising, and what support/sponsorship/assistance they can get
from local external organisations. 

> On the matter of chapter support, I have no doubt that the chapter
> will
> support a bid at some point and I do not think we should go ahead
> unless
> the chapter does support it. That however is for the future. I have
> some
> sympathy for Steve's view that this, 2 days from the AGM, is not the
> time to
> be discussing this. The new committee will have other things on its
> plate when it takes over.

Okay, but why not give the local members of cities interested in bidding
the chapter's permission to approach possible venues / sponsors /
government events groups / like-minded organisations, to scope out
what's involved / the facilities available / the best way to run it /
how much it would cost, as long as it's made crystal-clear it's scoping
at this stage? I don't see what we lose from that, the chapter doesn't
need to do anything else about it until this research is done, everyone
is operating under the same rules & opportunities, and if the bids are
able to learn from each other and we end up with several well-developed
bids, then that's a good thing and not a bad thing.

Just my 2 cents!

-- All the best,

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