Minutes of the August 8, 2000 SGB EC Conference Call

1) Review status of current action items.

The following action items were reported as complete:

Ellis to work with D. Johnson to establish FCRC Steering Committee. (10/2/99)

Note: SIGMETRICS has yet to decide if they will participate in FCRC'03. That is the only conference that has not yet appointed a committee member.

Soffa will work with other members of the SGB EC to explore BIO computing activities and how ACM can become a player. They'll make a recommendation on a suggested direction for ACM with regard to this area of computing separate from the direction SIGBIO takes. (2/5/00)

Baglio to implement procedures to begin accepting SPF proposals as approved by the SGB.(2/5/00)

Notkin, Whitton and Baglio to discuss triggers for reviews with the SGB. It was decided that a listing based on the HQ report for viability reviews be placed in the SGB SOR. (3/3/00)

Chesnais to provide access to Cassel to update conference software file on web. (4/7/00)

Notkin to summarize e-mail received on the SAC conference. (4/7/00)

Notkin & Soffa to figure out how to step forward with SIGBIO. (5/5/00)

Baglio to contact Levitan and request he submit a society proposal as outlined by the SGB EC. (6/2/00)

Baglio will secure monthly conference call dates and time once SGB EC election results are announced. (6/2/00)

The following actions were added during the action item discussion:

Action: Baglio to place update of SOR on the SGB agenda. The SOR is being updated to include a trigger listing for troubled SIGs based on the HQ report on viability.

Action: Notkin will appoint a committee to review the SAC conference.

2) SIGBIO Update

Notkin reminded the group that the SGB EC had agreed to move forward with the dissolution of SIGBIO over the objections from the SIG's leadership. Ed Lamie was informed of this and although he has had plenty of time, he has not responded. Notkin will spend time on finalizing this during the next SGB meeting. He would like to form a group to figure out if there's a niche that ACM should be involved in. How do we get there? We could set up a committee to allow ACM and/or the SIGs to be involved. Are there any holes in this specialty? We need to identify people that could be leaders. If we can't find strong people that can run a strong activity we should not pursue it.

Action: Soffa and Notkin to build a committee to help ACM move forward with BIO computing activities.

3) SIGCUE Update

Notkin reported that SIGCUE has been in transition for 1 year as a result of not completing a program review. There is little volunteer development and few activities. Hightower agreed that dissolution was the direction ACM needed to go and a letter was sent to all SIGCUE members. About 1 dozen letters came in from people offering to volunteer, to Chair, etc. but none having an understanding of what the SIG does or what the SIG should be doing. Notkin suggested that the interested members be given an extension from August 15th to September 15th to come up with an effective mission statement and focus for the SIG as well as a program plan to achieve them. The plan should identify the leaders in the field that will be participating.

Action: Notkin will get in touch with those individuals that showed interest in SIGCUE and will let them know that they have until September 15th to come up with an effective mission statement and focus for the SIG as well as a program plan to achieve them. The plan should identify the leaders in the field that will be participating.

4) SIGACT Mission Statement Change

Notkin reported that SIGACT requested an update to their mission statement. They made additions to the types of activities that SIGACT has involvement in (quantum computing, automata theory, etc.). Jeff Vitter, SIGACT's Chair tried to group things so that related topics tended to be together. The SIGACT EC approved the change.

New Statement: The primary mission of ACM SIGACT (Association for Computing Machinery Special Interest Group on Algorithms and Computation Theory) is to foster and promote the discovery and dissemination of high quality research in the domain of theoretical computer science. The field of theoretical computer science is interpreted broadly so as to include algorithms, data structures, complexity theory, distributed computation, parallel computation, VLSI, machine learning, computational biology, computational geometry, information theory, cryptography, quantum computation, computational number theory and algebra, program semantics and verification, automata theory, and the study of randomness. Work in this field is often distinguished by its emphasis on mathematical technique and rigor.

Motion: Approve changes to the SIGACT mission statement.
Notkin, Cohoon

Action: Chesnais to bring change in SIGACT mission statement to ACM EC for approval.

5) SIG SAM/NUM Scholarship proposal

Sofa reported that the SIGSAM leadership submitted a scholarship proposal to allocate the remaining SIGNUM funds.

The SIGSAM Executive Committee proposes that the remaining SIGNUM funds in the amount of $50,000 be allocated by the SGB EC to an endowment that will be administered by SIGSAM for the purpose of funding prizes for scholarly work and student travel grants that will be awarded in the name of SIGNUM.

We propose two kinds of awards: paper prizes and travel grants to students. First, we will award a prize for the best paper in the field of hybrid symbolic-numeric computation presented at the annual SIGSAM-sponsored International Symposium on Symbolic and Algebraic Computation (ISSAC). Interdisciplinary work on numerical applications of symbolic computation has been a theme of the ISSAC conferences, and SIGNUM has cosponsored ISSAC regularly in recent years. We believe that this award fulfills SIGNUM goals in a way that is consistent with SIGSAM goals and in a manner that SIGSAM can easily and responsibly implement. This prize shall be called the "SIGNUM Prize in Numerical and Symbolic Computation".

A winner (or winners) will be selected each year from the authors of papers accepted for presentation at the annual ISSAC. The SIGSAM chair shall appoint a committee to select the winners. The committee may choose not to give an award if it feels none is warranted. The committee may give a separate student prize for the best paper authored solely by one or more students in the field of hybrid symbolic-numeric computation. More detailed guidelines will be developed later, subject to approval by the SIGSAM EC, SGB EC, and ACM Awards Committee.

Second, we will award travel grants to attend ISSAC to students who are an author of a paper accepted for presentation at ISSAC. Preference will be given to student authors of papers in the field of hybrid symbolic-numeric computation, or numerical applications of symbolic computation, but grants may still be awarded to student authors, even if no student papers have been submitted in this area of research. These awards shall be referred to as "SIGNUM travel grants". The SIGSAM Chair shall appoint a committee to select grantees, or instead may delegate this task to the ISSAC Program Committee Chair. More detailed guidelines will be developed later, subject to approval by the SIGSAM EC, SGB EC, and ACM Awards Committee.

There was some concern about keeping SIGNUM in the title of the scholarship. In the future, few will know what SIGNUM was. The SGB EC agreed that the name could be changed at some point. If the SGB EC approves the proposal, the SIGSAM leaders will be required to put together an award proposal for approval of the ACM Awards committee. That will include exactly how the process is to work.

Motion: Contingent upon approval from the ACM Awards committee, the SGB EC shall allocate the remaining SIGNUM funds in the amount of $50,000 to fund an endowment to be administered by SIGSAM. This endowment shall fund prizes for scholarly work and student travel grants that will be awarded in the name of SIGNUM.
Notkin, Furuta

6) Publications Update

Cohoon reported that the Pubs Board wants to create a 'Bill of Rights' for authors and reviewers. He is constructing this and will forward the web-site address to the SGB EC for their review and comments. By doing this, they hope to attract other publications for ACM.


  1. There are several EIC reappointments taking place.
  2. The new Journal on Internet Technologies is moving forward.
  3. The publication board continues to look at look at start-ups that will produce both paper and electronic publications.
  4. The publications are all up to date. There are some like the Security Journal that are having a difficult time getting papers. They have a minimal backlog, enough for only one issue.
  5. ACM will be cooperating with a new Journal on Logic Programming.

7) Requests for Extension of Terms

Baglio reported that the leadership of SIGWEB, SIGUCCS, SIGCPR, SIGIR, SIGCOMM and SIGARCH requested term extensions. If the SGB EC approves their term extensions a postcard will be sent to their membership informing them the EC is extending and giving them adequate time to protest if they desire.

Motion: The SGB EC approves the term extensions of the leadership of SIGWEB, SIGUCCS, SIGCPR, SIGIR, SIGCOMM and SIGARCH.
Notkin, Ellis

8) Other Items

The SGB EC members decided to continue having the monthly conference call on the 2nd Tuesday of each month from 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM EST through December. If this does not work once all semester schedules are finalized, the call will be rescheduled.

Baglio received a request from Wayne Wolf of Princeton indicating interest in establishing a SIG on Embedded Computing. She would normally work with the SGB EC Vice Chair of Development on proposals and was instructed to wait until that individual was named before moving ahead with Dr. Wolf's proposal. The SGB EC indicated there could be quite a bit of overlap with other SIGs and it will be very important to get their input.

Action: Baglio to work with VC of Development with regard to proposal submitted on Embedded Computing SIG.

Baglio reported that SIGCHI submitted bylaw changes for the SGB's endorsement. The bylaws require input from the ACM COO or ED and approval from the Constitution and Bylaws Chair. Baglio was asked to forward these to the SGB EC Secretary for comment and recommendation as soon as that individual is named.

Action: Baglio will forward SIGCHI Bylaw changes to SGB EC Secretary for comment and recommendation as soon as that individual is named.



  • Donna Baglio
  • Alan Berenbaum
  • Alain Chesnais
  • Jim Cohoon
  • Carla Ellis
  • Rick Furuta
  • Mark Scott Johnson
  • Bruce Klein
  • David Notkin
  • Mary Lou Soffa
  • Stuart Feldman