Entries tagged with “academic”.
- Currently Listening to:
- Travis — Writing to Reach You
Academic paper titles have a tendency to be a bit staid, cautious and flat. Admittedly, this is a pattern I haven’t yet broken out of myself. Perhaps it’s because many non-English speakers are forced to publish in English (as English is the lingua franca of science). Or perhaps it is just prudent: since other researchers will often only cast a cursory glance over paper titles to decide which papers to read, or which sessions to attend at a conference, it generally pays to write clear titles.
In any case, I’ve been on the lookout for some creatively-named papers. Because they are rare, papers with clever and/or funny titles stand out easily among the deluge of stuffier titles. Here are some of my favourites:
“Gorillas in our midst: sustained inattentional blindness for dynamic events” By Daniel J. Simons and Christopher Chabris
In Perception, 1999 volume 28(9) pages 1059–1074.
Presented the results of the classic experiment in perception and selective attention involving people passing a basketball around (which you may have seen used for a road safety awareness ad). The title is a play on Gorillas in the Mist.
“A Very Modal Model of a Modern, Major, General Type System” By Andrew W. Appel, Paul-Andre Mellies, Christopher D. Richards, and Jerome Vouillon. In POPL 2007, pages 109–122.
(Say three times fast.) This title is based on a similarly tongue-twisting song from the musical The Pirates of Penzance.
“Secret Ninja Formal Methods” By Joe Kiniry and Dan Zimmerman. In Formal Methods 2008, pages 214–228.
Joe and Dan report on their experience with trying to make formal methods invisible to students while they learn good programming practices. Extra marks for giving their presentation in full ninja getup.
“The television will be revolutionized: effects of PVRs and filesharing on television watching.” By Barry Brown and Louise Barkhuus. In Proceedings of CHI ’06, pp. 663–666.
A reversal of the title of Gil Scott-Heron’s poem, The Revolution Will Not Be Televised.
“HT06, Tagging Paper, Taxonomy, Flickr, Academic Article, ToRead.” By Cameron Marlow, Mor Naaman, danah boyd and Marc Davis.
In HYPERTEXT ’06, pages 31–40).
The writers themselves suggest this might be the “least memorable title in ACM history”, but I disagree — this immediately jumped out at me as a sly nod to how people use tags.
I might never reach you
Only want to teach you
- Currently Listening to:
- Barenaked Ladies — It’s All Been Done
A literature review is a standard part of any postgraduate’s endeavours, and usually makes up the majority of your first year or two. A good review sets up the landscape that you’re going to work within, saving you from duplicating effort and allowing you to identify the key players in your field. You don’t necessarily have to reel off a big document summarising your reading, but if you do it’s a fine head start on the first chunk of your thesis.
I had started my lit review last year, but it’s easy to fall into the trap of merely printing and filing papers without having read them. Then, in December at our second annual SRG-fest Joe gave an inspiring talk about structuring a literature review intelligently. Among his suggestions were to choose a handful of key conferences in your area and read every paper published in their proceedings for the last few years. For me, these conferences are places like InfoVis, ICAC, Pervasive and CHI.
Secondly he suggested building up a “mindmap” of the research areas that you’re actively engaging in. This has proven to be a very worthy excercise.
My (intimidating!) PhD mindmap
When drawn up like this my research interests seem both nicely structured but also worryingly broad. And I left out the stuff I’ll likely need to understand but currently have no interest in, like semantics, embedded systems and parallelism. My reading has been branching out a bit recently too; since I’ve started tracking my bookmarks on del.icio.us I discovered that I’m actually more interested in things like sociology and psychology than I thought.
If you imagine all the possible research that could be done in our field as a pie chart, the area I’m going to explore will end up being a thin sliver in that chart. Aaron always said that his job as my supervisor was to keep me anchored in that segment and not wander too far outside of it. Looks like he’s got his work cut out for him.
Friday 30 Dec 2005
Posted by Ross at 6:23 PM under Blog
- Currently Listening to:
- Arcade Fire — Neighbourhood #1 (Tunnels)
No, not the as-yet-unknown-quantity that is the paper I’m trying to put together for AVI 2006. I just got word from one of the editors at O’Reilly that the book I contributed to, PHP Hacks, has been published and is in shops. I should be getting my ‘author copy’ in the post over the next few days. Huzzah!
At this early stage in my PhD, it would be instructive to look ahead and take a wild, naïve guess as to what kind of deliverable simulation I may end up producing at the end. If only to look back and laugh later on.
First of all; the challenge, as I understand it at this time:
To model an autonomic system, specifically one inside an automotive machine, most likely a car. A modern car will have a wide array of sensors and actuators, and the system designer needs to be able to see how they are performing, in real time.
At the moment I’m envisioning a car, modelled in 3D, driving out onto a classic Tufte-ian grid.
A car that I’ll never be able to model.
The best guess at the moment on what kind of 3D I’m going to use would be some modification of the “Source” engine, which powered Half Life 2. The SDK comes with the game and I’ve played around with it. It’s very powerful.
Once the car comes to a stop, the outer paneling flies off, exposing a simplified version of the car’s innards. Thus begins the simulation, with (hopefully live) data being fed into the system and the display showing various activities on the screen.
Statistics like network activity and CPU usage will be on-screen at all times, in the form of pie-graphs and “sparklines” to show trends over time. Atomic events such as sensors being activated and sensors failing will be shown as alerts, possibly through a picture-in-picture system that shows a zoomed-in version of the full model at the point where the incident occurred. Clicking on this PiP box will then focus the main view on this area, through a camera movement. This device was used in the household simulation game, “The Sims”, to announce events like burglaries and housefires.
So, that’s what I’ve got so far. Of course, I’m leaving out all the bits about multiple displays and pulling elements from the main screen down onto a PDA or something crazy. It’s early days yet though, so this could still go in any direction.
- PHD Comics: Call for Papers!
- Jeffrey P. Bigham
- MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
On the fortieth anniversary of Project MAC's establishment, July 1, 2003, LCS re-merged with the AI Lab to form the MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, or CSAIL. This merger created the largest laboratory (over 600 personnel) on the MIT campus and was regarded as a reuniting of the diversified elements of Project MAC.
- How to get a CS paper published when not in academia? - Stack Overflow
I guess you really have to ask yourself what you want from your work: money, fame or just knowing it's out there.
If it's money, go for a patent or a product. If it's fame, fight with academia, publishing or blogging.
If it's just the desire to feel good about it, release the code, and then explain how it works in a blog or some other on-line forum. Maybe, if you're really lucky you'll get some good karma for your efforts.
- University of Sheffield - Steve Whittaker
- HCI Bibliography : Most Frequent Authors
- Volatile and Decentralized: The Psychology of Program Committees
There are many subtle psychological effects that influence the disposition towards a given paper. The first has to do with the timing of the paper discussion. At the beginning of a PC meeting, everyone is amped up on caffeine and uncalibrated with the respect to the overall quality of the papers being discussed. Your chances of getting a paper accepted when it is discussed early on in the meeting can vary widely. Most PC meetings discuss the top-ranked papers first, but after a string of (say) five or so papers accepted, people start thinking that it's time to reject a paper, so the sixth paper tends to be a scapegoat to release the pressure and make everyone feel better that the conference is still "selective." Fortunately, most PC chairs recognize this effect and switch gears to discussing some of the lower-ranked papers next, so the committee sees both ends of the spectrum. I've been in PC meetings where the top ranked paper with four strong accepts and a weak accept is tabled for f
- CHI 2010 alt.chi Call for Participation
The CHI conference is the leading venue to present innovations in human computer interaction. The year's best work from researchers and practitioners is selected in a strictly competitive process. But this competition also inevitably means that many valuable contributions are never presented at CHI - and some might not even be submitted.
With alt.chi 2010, we want to continue the tradition of providing a venue for unusual, challenging and thought-provoking work that might not otherwise be seen at the conference. alt.chi is a place to experiment with how CHI submissions are presented, submitted, reviewed and selected. alt.chi is CHI's breathing hole, the space for change, where new ideas can be tried out and experienced. alt.chi 2010 is your chance to express your controversial ideas about the current state and future directions of HCI research, and to present that paper you always wanted to write but you knew would never get through the conventional review process.
- DUB For the Future: I give up on CHI/UIST
The papers we have submitted with truly new ideas and techniques, and years of work behind them, get reviews asking you to do 2-4 years more work. For example, they ask you to create a completely different system by another team with no knowledge of your ideas and run an A vs. B test (because that commercial system you compared to had different goals in mind). Oh, and 8-10 participants doing 3-4 hour sessions/participant isn't enough for an evaluation. You need lots more... They go on and on like this. Essentially setting you up for a level of rigor that is almost impossible to meet in the career of a graduate student. This attitude is a joke and it offers researchers no incentive to do systems work. Why should they?