Google Analytics

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Busy Conference Week

I don't travel far for my next conference, the ACM Electronic Commerce conference being held in downtown Chicago. Tutorial and workshop sessions start today.

The conference is not about using credit cards on the internet, but rather a slew of topics connecting computer science and economics, lots of auctions and networks for instance. I am general chair this year, a bit more challenging than the six years I spent in the same position at the Complexity conference because of having to integrate the different cultures of CS theory, AI and economics.

But EC is not the only game going on right now. ICALP, the major European theory conference is happening as we speak in Iceland while in Finland we have COLT, the learning theory coference starting Thursday. The sun won't set on ICALP or COLT this year.

Let's not also forget the IEEE International Symposium on Information Theory in Toronto so nicely described by Mitzenmacher.

Unfortunately conflicts like these require difficult choices. I (and many others) have attended and had papers in ICALP, COLT and EC in the past. Why do we have these conflicts? These conferences need to be planned out years in advance with a number of various date constraints making coordination very difficult and early to mid July makes for good conference dates as a post-classes, pre-vacation time in many countries. As CS expands and adds more conferences to cover the increasing number of papers we produce, this problem will only get worse in the future.

2 comments:

  1. But doesn't this suggest we should be having more large, encompassing conferences (like ISIT) rather than subdividing into ever finer subgroups?

    ReplyDelete
  2. As CS expands and adds more conferences to cover the increasing number of papers we produce, this problem will only get worse in the future.

    The answer is collocation.

    There are several conferences out there that fully collocate or at least coordinate dates and geographic locations so that people traveling by air need only purchase one ticket to attend both conferences.

    ReplyDelete