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[Computational Complexity] Why do I go to conferences?

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  • GASARCH
    Why do I go to conferences? - To find out about papers that might spark my interest and lead to the following: - Papers. Most recent example: Moser s paper in
    Message 1 of 1 , Jul 26, 2009
      Why do I go to conferences?
      1. To find out about papers that might spark my interest and lead to the following:
        1. Papers. Most recent example: Moser's paper in STOC 2009 has lead to a paper that is now in progress.
        2. Surveys. I saw a talk on PIR's at STOC 2000 which lead to my interest in them, my survey, and my website on them.
        3. Topics that I want to read up on. In CCC09 the paper on pointer-jumping pointed me to material I want to read up on.
        4. Ideas for honors projects and homeworks.
      2. To find out random stuff in the hallways. Most recent example: Scott Aaronson told me about a proof that PP is closed under intersection that uses Quantum stuff. Oldest example: I found out Fixed Pareamter Tractability from Mike Fellows very early on at a conference.
      3. To ask about stuff in the hallways. E.g., At CCC2009 I had some questions on derandomization that I asked around about.
      4. During talks I don't understand I sometimes get other work done.
      5. During talks I don't understand I sometimes take a nap.
      6. I do not log on when I am at conferences. Really! I'm always curious how many emails I will get. This time I was gone for 12 days and came back to 289 emails. Not that many since lots of email is in resopnse to email that you send out, so the less you send out the less you get. Of the 289 about 20 were relevent.
      Some say that you learn MORE from the hallways than the talks. And it is true that you can just read the talk later. But there is still something about seeing someone give a good inspiring talk that makes you want to follow up and give the paper a more careful read. The key is to maintain this feeling once you are home.

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      Posted By GASARCH to Computational Complexity at 7/26/2009 03:37:00 PM
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