Hey kids! It's time for the business meeting for the 22nd Annual ACM Symposium on Computational Geometry! Everybody got a beer? Great! Let's see what those wacky geometers are doing in Sedona this year.
Pankaj thanks the committee. Everybody claps. Then inexplicably, everybody gets up, puts on constumes and dances around the room. I finish my beer.
Alon Efrat reports on local organization:
About 110 126 participants (including 32 47 students) from 16many different countries, plus Australia. Alon thanks the other local volunteers. Everybody claps. Someone from the audience thanks Alon. Everybody claps. Everybody gets up and does the Yo Gabba Gabba thing again.
Nina Amenta gives the program committee report.
142 138 submissions (apparently a few were withdrawn), of which a record 54 were accepted, thanks to a wise decision by the PC to have parallel sessions on the second day. As usual, papers about Voronoi diagrams were had a high acceptance rate, but every submission about juggling bears was rejected. Papers by an odd number of authors had a slightly worse acceptance ratio, unless exactly one of the authors was a former PC member. Much grumbling from the audience about parallel sessions, some arguing against, others in favor. Much drinking of beer from the amused but largely unconcerned audience members. Ultimately, there is a general consensus that at most one day of parallel sessions is fine, but the choice should be left to the next PC. Everybody claps, and drinks.
Joe Mitchell asks the committee to stand. Everyone claps. There is some pointless discussion about submission formats, which I can't hear over Stefan Langerman singing the conference program to the tune of "It's the End of the World as We Know It". Everyone claps. More Yo-Gabba-Gabba-ing ensues. I go for my third beer, a Bell's Wheat Love Ale. Mmmm.
Jack Snoeyink (né Snoeyink), wearing his usual snazzy jacket and carrying his usual snazzy notepad computer, juggles eight flaming swords while describing the video/multimedia presentations.
Pankaj announces a proper subset of next year's program committee, of which I am the chair. Yes, just me. A few people wonder why I'm not making the announcement myself, and for that matter, why I'm not even at the conference. A somewhat convincing explanation involving an impending birth is offered, which leads several other members of the audience to question my sanity. John Iacono stands on his chair and shouts "¡Viva la Revolucion!" Everyone else quietly takes a sip of their beer.
Oftried Cheong brings out a dozen trained elephants, who dance the watusi while Otfried describes the conference venue at Gyeongju. The word "beer" appears on the screen and everyone claps. Stefan, having reached the parallel session part of the program, enlists Erik Demaine and Bettina Speckman's help in singing counterpoint. Inexplicably, John stands on his chair and shouts "¡Viva la Revolucion!" again. One of the elephants falls of the stage, landing on one of Jack's flaming swords, and pops like a balloon. I go for my fourth beer.
Several people bid for SOCG 2008: Pankaj and Jack repeat last year's bid for Chapel Hill. David Mount repeats last year's bid for Baltimore/DC. Suresh suggests Cuba, prompting a quick (but somewhat less vertical) "¡Viva!" from John. Erik is pulled to the stage at gunpoint and handed a hastily scribbled note reads "Um, I, state your name, being of sound mind and body and acting entirely voluntarily, offer to host the next Symposium on Computational Geometry at MIT's Stata Center." Everybody claps. Pankaj confirms that yes, the first word on the note was in fact "Um". Everybody claps. Stefan, having finished his vocal rendition of the conference program, begins to sing "Fight Fiercely, Hahvahd". Jack and David, two flaming swords in each hand, angrily search the room for the source of the note. Ken Clarkson mutters under his breath, "Dear God, have you been to Cambridge?" For some reason, Piyush Kumar is still chanting "Yo Gabba Gabba!" Someone else (Tamal Dey) bids somewhere else (Columbus), but nobody can hear them. Joe calls for a vote. There is some confusion over how many options each person can vote for. Everybody drinks.
MIT wins by a landslide. Washington DC wins! Everybody drinks. Someone has found 50 gallons of pink paint, which they proceed to throw over the elephants.
There being no other pressing business, everybody stands and chants in unison "But it's a dry heat!" and then forms a conga line, which winds out the door. After everyone else has left the room, John stands up on his chair as if to shout one last time, but after a few seconds, shakes his head and walks out.
Update (6/6/6): Unlike me, Suresh was really there. The actual vote for 2008 was between Washington, DC (45 votes) and Columbus, OH (28 votes). Apparently the North Carolinians have given up, and nobody was actually willing to point a gun at Erik. Yes, sir, we do like us some imported beer. Hmmm... That gives me an idea. Let's get Stefan to host SOCG 2009 in Brussels!