Musings of a Tech Transfer Enthusiast
The International Conference on Source Code Analysis and Manipulation (SCAM) has always been a small conference, but it consistently delivers high value for attendees due to its interactive format, engineering roots, and strong community. SCAM's 2016 edition will be held in tech-savvy Raleigh, a place that offers visitors a taste of all that's great about the American South without having to leave the comforts of a city. In this post I'll introduce our organizing committee, explain updates to SCAM's format, and give a sneak peak into potential Raleigh diversions.
For those of you unfamiliar with SCAM, SCAM is what I would call an interactive venue. Speakers still present during each session, but a significant portion of each session is devoted to discussing the papers that were presented as well as provocative questions that each author prepares. To me this is what sets SCAM apart from other venues, as it provides a safe open forum to quickly get feedback on your work from lots of experts. Additionally, it forces you to become better at public discussion, an invaluable skill for an aspiring researcher. For those seeking deeper feedback and looking to improve their discussion skills in a friendly environment I'd encourage you to try SCAM out.
Before I introduce our tracks' co-chairs I first need to explain one change in SCAM's format that will occur in 2016. As always, SCAM will have only two tracks. However, in 2016 SCAM will have a Research Track and an Engineering Track, the Engineering Track replacing the Tools Track. This is not to discourage tool paper submissions--they will now fall into the Engineering Track--but to broaden the scope of the tools track. I do not want to say too much about this track's scope, as we have two excellent co-chairs working on the concrete definition, but for those of you that invest blood, sweat, and tears into tooling, infrastructure, or realistic field studies SCAM recognizes the value of this work, which is not always pure research, and we are designing this track to attract that type of work.
Thus far we have been able to assemble a great set of co-chairs for SCAM. Our strategy at every level was to select one co-chair from academia and one from industry. Without further ado, I present our General Co-Chairs:
Next, I'd like to present our Research Track Co-Chairs:
And finally, I'd like to introduce SCAM's very first Engineering Track Co-Chairs:
While SCAM itself is worth the trip it's always nice when the venue has a cultural experience to offer. On this front Raleigh shines. Raleigh's just Southern enough to offer great BBQ and sweet tea but with enough outside influence to still be comfortable to visitors. Here I'll point out just a few of the places you'll want to visit while you're here.
North Carolina has great BBQ, as everyone knows, but our deep-seated Southern hospitality forces us to ensure we also have great offerings for vegetarians too. We'd hate for anyone to feel left out! Below are pictures from two restaurants that are just a short walk from the venue, The Pit for BBQ lovers, and the Fiction Kitchen for vegetarians.
One of America's greatest contributions of late is the craft brewery scene, which has been burgeoning North Carolina. As of last count, there were 135+ craft breweries in NC alone! While the diversity of brews available has been great I must say it's a bit overwhelming for the uninitiated to choose from the aisles and aisles of craft suds. That's why I'm recommending you visit Tasty Beverage, a bottle shop and bar just a short walk from the conference venue. The staff at Tasty Beverage are true craft beer connoisseurs and they are always ready with helpful recommendations. Treat them as your tour guide through America's craft brew scene and you'll soon see why this movement has become so popular.
For the music lovers there's a genre of music you must hear live when you're in Raleigh, bluegrass. There's been a recent resurgence of interest in this art form led by traditionalists like Balsam Range and the more pop-influenced Mipso. As luck would have it, the Wide Open Bluegrass festival has coincided with SCAM's timing for the past two years, and likely as well in 2016, so there will be plenty of chances to experience bluegrass the only way it was meant to be heard, live.
As you can see, SCAM '16 has a lot to offer, but I haven't given it all away here. You see, SCAM, much like its participants, is a wonderfully quirky venue. Having ridden on a duck boat on the way to the banquet in '15 and each year paid my tribute to Monty Python, SCAM has always surprised and amused me. I hope you'll join us for next year's ride.
David Shepherd leverages software engineering research to create useful additions to the IDE.