There was a strict seven-minute limit on speeches at the late-evening fringe event entitled After the Handshake: the shape of politics to come.
"My seven minutes starts in a few minutes' time," announced the SDLP's Alasdair McDonnell, launching into a very long description of the state of community relations.
It was an interesting evening's debate, although a woman in the front row - who sat knitting throughout - might not agree.
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