Today's is the last day of SASO, the IEEE International Conference on Self-Adaptive and Self-Organizing systems. There are more workshops tomorrow, but I've been away long enough and I'm hopping on an early morning plane to go home to my wife and daughter.
It's been a good conference, not just for my personal aggrandizement as a scientist, but also for me to learn things and have good conversations with colleagues. Overall, I had about a 30% hit rate on talks I was interested in---pretty high for a conference---and I'm taking away a couple of things I need to look into more, and some possible collaborations to continue.
Right at the end, I had the privilege to sit on this conference's panel discussion, which focused the topic of "New Research Directions." My own slides were a subject of much discussion and debate, as they challenged people to spend more time focusing on the refinement of SASO material into reliable and reusable engineering building blocks.
The bit from the whole discussion that sticks best in my mind, however, was Mark Jelasity's declaration that SASO is "a place to send your rejected papers---but only the odd ones, not the bad ones." I found that an apt description, and based on the discussion, I think a lot of other people did too. The same ideas were reflected somewhat in my own slides---SASO, I find, is a place filled with people wrestling with excedingly difficult problems, and looking outside of their own domains to find solutions. It's hard and slow and produces a lot of false starts, but damn it's an interesting breed of science.
It's been a good conference, and now it's time to go home. You may now expect this blog to go back to its normal weekly posting schedule.
From Lyon, good night.