[Computational Complexity] Conference Presentations
The quality of conference presentations have, on average, much improved over the past decade or two. Why? Certainly technological improvements like PowerPoint and advanced LaTeX macros have helped. As our field gets more specialized, talks in general theory conferences have to appeal to a wider audience which tend to improve the presentation. Or perhaps I'm just remembering only the bad talks from the good old days.
Despite the increase in quality, I find myself going to fewer and fewer talks in general theory conferences. I learn much more talking directly to my fellow computer scientists. As for the presentations, I can read the papers later.
A fellow computer scientist suggested that we hire a company to videotape the talks and make them available on the web. A back of the envelope calculation suggested we could make this happen for about $10 extra per participant for a reasonably sized conference. I am not a fan of making talks available on the web. Outside of a conference, who has time to sit at a computer screen and watch talks. I also worry about giving people yet another reason not to go to a conference. Remember the most important aspect of a scientific conference are not the talks and papers but bringing members of the community together.
Posted by Lance to Computational Complexity at 5/30/2005 09:48:00 PM