I finally managed to capture the chalkboard on camera. The diagram is the central focus and remains up through the entire talk, with various additions and modifications made along the way.
Giving the same talk several times over the space of a month allows you to appreciate a few things. Minor adjustments can make a big difference, especially to pacing. Having already given a talk once really boosts your confidence. Having given a talk four times already doesn’t give you complete confidence. Responses can vary dramatically as audiences latch onto different aspects of what you are doing, and as you invariably emphasize specific things. At Boston College they wanted to hear more about special cube complexes, something many of them had heard about but had little exposure to, while at UIC I had audience members who had themselves considered the specific conjecture I am working on and were curious to hear about the obstructions I had encountered.
After roaming all over Manhattan I had a far more limited Chicago experience. I don’t think I strayed any further than a mile from the hotel and campus and most of my time was spent talking mathematics.
Now I’m back in Haifa, recovering from jet-lag. Despite the rain that marked my departure a month ago, I’ve returned to amazing weather.