Tuesday, January 27, 2009

SIGCOMM PC starting... STOC PC ending...

I guess there's another week until the "official deadline" for SIGCOMM, but the deadline for registration of abstracts/titles has already happened, and I was asked to "bid" on papers I was interested in. It's hard to tell from the limited information, but it seems like there are plenty of interesting papers. Mostly I was looking for papers covering algorithmic engineering or just plain algorithmic problems, the econ/CS interface, and coding (network coding seems to be getting bigger), but there were certainly papers outside those areas that caught my eye. Out of the 300-400 submissions, there were more than 50 that looked interesting enough for me to request them; I was only asked to choose at least 30 to start.

Of course, since the whole process is double-blind, I don't know who submitted the papers, and hopefully the authors won't be able to figure out which reviews I end up writing.

This would all be great fun, but there's of course STOC to finish up. We've rejected about half the papers so far (we're still in the pre-meeting stage). Of course, that's the "easy" part. Now things get harder.


Anonymous said...

What was/is the minimum grade scheme to not have been rejected yet from STOC?

Anonymous said...

It is interesting that you said "I don't know who submitted the papers". Come on! SIGCOMM is rigged. Every year is the same people or students of "top" Profs. that publishes there. I wonder why people bother with this conference. Well, I guess most people hope to get lucky, or gain some useful feedback. A waste of time, IMO.

Michael Mitzenmacher said...

Anonymous 2 -- you're right, of course, it's rigged. We already know what papers are going to get in, we're just writing up reviews for the other papers for appearances. The real reason I'm excited about the SIGCOMM PC is that since we have the decisions made in advance, at the "PC meeting" we just get to drink, kick back, and have a good time.

Whoops. Forgot the sarcasm, /sarcasm flags. But I'm sure you caught on.

Anonymous said...


More seriously, are submission authors allowed to give a talk or post the paper on a public webpage?
(Another potential leakage is when experimenting with an unnamed system which can be linked WHP to 1-2 specific labs.)

If publicizing submissions is allowed, then it's often not that anonymous...especially for established researchers that are well-known in the field and their students. In other words, these people have no real incentive to hide their identity.

Disallowing publicity is of course just ridiculous as well as scientifically problematic.

Michael, what's your experience?

Anonymous said...

Oh, finally! The place where I can leave my opinion about SIGCOMM PC and it actually will be read by a SIGCOMM PC member. The Anonymous 2 sounds angry but overall s/he is right. You are in Theory, as I understand, so why don't you calculate a correlation between an "acceptance" and a membership in a "conflict of interest" group for the last 10 years of SIGCOMM and let us know the results. I've done this exercise in the past and got about 60% to 80% (depending on definitions). Did not look quite fair to me.

Indeed, about 80% of SIGCOMM papers are quite average works by some well known people, including PC members, and the rest 20% are great works from people much less known. So to get into SIGCOMM you either do something great, or you get to know someone in charge, that is what it looks like.

Formally it is still double blind, of course, but when someone big and famous stands up and leaves the room before a paper is discussed, everyone gets the message.