I just learned that a member of a local band I saw died. He was also a PhD candidate and "died suddenly." I suppose suicide isn't the only possibility but it seems very likely. And it is awful and sad.
Grad school takes a lot of us to dark places. It's never the only factor, but it seems to be a factor all too often.
One of my favorite things about the emacs community is that it’s one of the few remaining areas in “tech” where you still run into folks that are like “I’m a mountaineer by trade but oh yeah here’s my twenty thousand lines of LISP code that a significant percentage of the emacs community uses” … it’s this really interesting mix of users that all share the same compute environment for their daily problem solving and reaches faaaaaaaar beyond the usual tech industry suspects #emacs
Hey folks, it is generally frowned upon for #accessibility reasons for you to use Unicode "fonts" and weird text in your posts. Don't substitute your name with some gothic font that is some weird Unicode that doesn't make sense in the language you use. As I understand it, #ScreenReaders cannot read that and will spew all kinds of weird things, reading out odd letters if they can do anything at all. Don't use that "creepy" "Zalgo" text for the same reason.
@maxsnew I definitely got a lot from in-person meetings myself too! Both because of the social aspect and because my brain is too broken to focus for long on remote talks. Still, I don't think *forcing* people to travel in order to hear/give talks is a good idea.
It's even worse when you're required to travel in order to *publish*, because these should be separate concerns. Actually, the best in-person events I went to did not have published proceedings; they were either thematic workshops, or the Highlights of Automata conf https://highlights-conference.org which is basically meant to give a picture of what's happened in the field this year through 5-minute talks while leaving a lot of time for socializing. There also exists a "Highlights of Algorithms" conf, I wish there was something similar for programming language theory…
Here's a study on the benefits of virtual conferences, with concrete data on increased attendance by international participants and by women: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41893-021-00823-2
The ICALP 2023 call for papers is out https://icalp2023.cs.upb.de/call-for-papers/ and I'm disappointed to see the following:
"At least one author of each accepted paper is required to register for the conference, and all talks are in-person."
This is such a step backwards from one of the rare silver linings of the pandemic, both for reasons of carbon footprint and of inclusivity!
(Anyway, in my opinion it is hypocritical for these CS "conferences" with peer-reviewed proceedings to pretend to be actual social gatherings rather than journals with fast publication tied to mandatory attendance…)