Thursday, October 25, 2007

Australian conference/journal ranking

Why do Australian CS researchers create their own conference/journal ranking? If it is so important to rank conferences/journals why don't they use existing international rankings? Instead we are all allowed to suggest how a specific conference/journal should be ranked. With such a small set of CS researchers publishing in good conferences/journals the result is bound to be skewed to "personal favourites".

I actually took the time to try to re-rank some of the more obvious mistakes in the conference ranking a few months ago, but I never took the time to go through the journal ranking - big mistake. Today I looked at the Australian journal ranking and realised that there is not a single computational geometry journal on the list. Furthermore, Algorithmica, Journal of Combinatorial Optimization and many more theory journals are not on the list. Out of my 30 journal publications I believe 4 are published in a ranked journal! The quality of my publications is not great but still - four!!!

Of course most of us don't take this to serious...until it's time to apply for grants. It's not easy to work in CS theory here in Australia but we're not making it easier for us by ignoring the conference/journal rankings. I hope all Australian CS theory people will take a look at the ranking and propose changes to the list. Fill in the following form and submit to conference.rankings at (the same form/address is used for journals).

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

game theory related papers in SODA 2008

Below is a list of game-theory related papers, to appear in SODA 2008. Only half of them showed up on my google searches and seem to be available online.
  1. Incentive Compatible Regression Learning, Ofer Dekel and Felix Fischer and Ariel D. Procaccia (pdf)
  2. On the Value of Coordination in Network Design, Susanne Albers
  3. Designing Networks with Good Equilibria, Ho-Lin Chen and Tim Roughgarden and Gregory Valiant (pdf)
  4. Fast Load Balancing via Bounded Best Response, Baruch Awerbuch and Yossi Azar and Rohit Khandekar
  5. Fast Algorithms for Finding Proper Strategies in Game Trees, Peter Bro Miltersen and Troels Bjerre Sorensen (pdf)
  6. Succinct Approximate Convex Pareto Curves, Ilias Diakonikolas and Mihalis Yannakakis
  7. (Almost) Optimal Coordination Mechanisms for Unrelated Machine Scheduling, Yossi Azar and Kamal Jain and Vahab Mirrokni
  8. The complexity of game dynamics: BGP oscillations, sink equlibria, and beyond, Alex Fabrikant and Christos H. Papadimitriou (ps)
  9. Charity Auctions on Social Networks, Arpita Ghosh and Mohammad Mahdian
  10. Minimizing average latency in oblivious routing, Prahladh Harsha and Thomas Hayes and Hariharan Narayanan and Harald Raecke and Jaikumar Radhakrishnan
  11. On Allocations that Maximize Fairness, Uriel Feige (pdf)

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Algorithmics activities in NZ

In February there will be a 5-day algorithmics meeting in Napier, New Zealand. They got five great speakers, Steve Linton, Dominic Welsh, Michael Mitzenmacher, Michael Langston and Brendan McKay, so I'm sure it will be a very interesting week.

Monday, October 15, 2007

ACSW 2008 registration fee

After writing several posts complaining about the registration fees of ACSW (CATS) and IWOCA I just found out that the (late) full fee for ACSW is A$ 750 and only A$ 275 for students. It's not cheap but it is at least a step in the right direction (last year's fee was A$900). Go ACSW!

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

SWAT 2008

SWAT 2008 (Scandinavian Workshop on Algorithm Theory) will take place on the 2-4th of July 2008 in Gothenburg. Sweden (and especially Gothenburg) is well worth a visit. In July the days are long, sunset around 11pm and sunrise around 3:30am (in the north the sun never sets), and the weather is usually perfect. The submission deadline is on the 17th of February, so it's time to start the research and plan your summer vacation.

Advertisers study quantum computing?

A recent Australian TV ad for Ricoh turned out to be plagiarising Scott Aaronson's quantum mechanics lecture. More in the the Sydney Morning Herald.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Workshop in the Netherlands

I just came back from a great workshop in the Netherlands organised by Marc van Kreveld. The topic was on geometric algorithms for problems motivated from spatial data mining and spatio-temporal data mining. We were 15 researchers, mostly working in computational geometry, but also one geographer.

The first day Patrick Laube from Melbourne gave a very interesting overview of the area and proposed lots of open problems, which we spent the rest of the week trying to solve. In general I very much enjoy these kinds of workshops. It gives you the opportunity to work with new people and learn about new problems. What made this workshop special was that everyone seemed to work with everyone. There was even one problem that I think almost all of us were involved in, so if we get a paper out of it I wouldn't be surprised if it will be a 15 authors paper. It might be an annoying process to write the paper but the research was great!