[Conferences-discuss] Printed proceedings?

David Ascher DavidA@ActiveState.com
Wed, 13 Feb 2002 09:23:51 -0800

Greg Ward wrote:

> There are some inherent problems with having a printed proceedings book:
>   * cost of printing and binding
>   * the overhead of having a program committee review and accept/reject
>     papers (but this also serves as an important quality control
>     filter -- usually the dross doesn't get into the conference)

The overhead is not in the acceptance/rejection of papers -- that's the
overhead of having _refereed papers_, not of the proceedings aspect of

There is overhead involved in formatting all of the papers in a similar
fashion, and all of the actual production process.  

> There are also some implementation problems with the proceedings books I
> have seen so far; I think the biggest one is simply this: no copy
> editor!  As near as I can tell, no one is responsible for making sure
> that the published papers are grammatically and orthographically
> correct, or that the formatting isn't all screwed up.  

Part of the problem w/ any third-party (e.g. Foretec) doing the
proceedings is that their technical expertise doesn't extend to
understanding the impact of line breaks on Python code readability.  If
you want to volunteer for the job, though, that's helpful =).

> So: how does everyone feel about having published papers coming out the
> conference?  In short, is it worth the time, effort, and expense?

I think that while the question is worth answering, it's waaay too early
to ask for votes.  No one here has any experience with the time/effort
component, and I've gotten no believable data on the expense factor.  So
I would discount all "votes" as being uninformed.