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Subject: [news.announce.conferences] Frequently Asked Questions
This article was archived around: 14 Apr 1999 21:09:32 GMT
Posting-Frequency: biweekly (14th and 28th every month)
Frequently Asked Questions
Conference Announcements Newsgroup
* [1.1] What types of announcements are posted to the newsgroup?
* [1.2] What types of announcements are not posted to the newsgroup?
* [1.3] What types of announcements are not posted to the WWW server?
* [1.4] Why do many announcements carry meaningless subject lines?
* [2.1] How do I submit announcements?
* [2.2] How do I specify into which category my announcement should be
* [2.3] What to avoid!
*  It's not an announcement, but related to a certain topic present in
the conferences archive. Can I include it in your pages?
*  When will I see my announcement posted?
*  How can announcements be updated?
*  How long are announcements kept?
* [7.1] How do I access the archive?
* [7.2] What are the requirements on Web browsers?
* [7.3] How do I get more information on an event?
* [7.4] How does the automatic update service work?
* [7.5] How do I talk to the automatic update service?
*  Why are these WWW pages so little flashy?
*  Is it possible to include URL references to announcement pages in
my HTML documents?
If you still have any questions about the newsgroup or the Web pages,
or have any suggestions as to how improvements can be made, feel free
to drop me a line at Juergen.Wagner@iao.fhg.de.
Moderator of news.announce.conferences
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) for news.announce.conferences
[1.1] What types of announcements are posted to the newsgroup?
The newsgroup n.a.c is intended for announcements of conferences,
workshops, symposia, meetings, public lecture series, etc. They usually
fall into the categories of calls for papers or abstracts, and calls
for participation. In addition to this, I also forward calls for papers
from journals, and information on specific mailing lists or other
Internet resources carrying such announcements.
[1.2] What types of announcements are not posted to the newsgroup?
You won't believe it, but from time to time there are really bizarre
submissions to the newsgroup. Since there usually isn't enough time to
individually respond to the sender, making clear what n.a.c is about,
such postings are just ignored. Examples include: job announcements,
requests for job offers, commercial sales offers (for products or
services), talk about people meeting other people at an event, requests
for information about certain conferences, and wild postings off the
topic (no announcements at all). These seem to be the major categories.
[1.3] What types of announcements are not posted to the WWW server?
The following types of submissions may appear on the newsgroup, but may
not be added to the WWW archive:
o pure LaTeX, TeX, PostScript, and other encoded texts;
o announcements without a precise date indication;
o announcements not pertaining to conferences or journals;
o very, very long postings.
[1.4] Why do many announcements carry meaningless subject lines?
The subject lines are just passed through from the original poster, but
I try to fill in empty subjects and replace meaningless ones. However,
as priority is given to quickly post announcements on the newsgroup,
while a bit more time can be spent until the posting has been
incorporated into the archive, the posting mechanism has to be quick
and dirty. As a first attempt to help readers in identifying relevant
new announcements, there will be weekly postings (every Sunday morning)
containing new and changed announcements by subject category.
Eventually, this should probably go to a new newsgroup
I'm open to suggestions (no, I can't spend two or more minutes per
announcement for scanning it and rewriting the subject line).
[2.1] How do I submit announcements?
Announcements for new events should be submitted in one of three ways:
o by sending it via electronic mail to email@example.com;
o by posting an article to the (moderated) newsgroup
o by using one of the WWW submission forms if you have a
forms-capable WorldWideWeb browser.
All three methods will eventually have the same effect i.e., your
submission will appear on the newsgroup and in the WWW archive. Please,
read the submission guidelines to find out how to format your
announcement for this index. You may also have a look at the biweekly
posting to the newsgroup news.announce.conferences.
If you choose to post by news or e-mail, be sure to include
sufficiently descriptive subject lines. Imagine what people think when
confronted with "2621 new artices -- read now?" when they start their
mail or news reader. Please do include a subject line! Please don't
call it "Announcement", "submission", or "news.announce.conferences
posting", but rather something like "CfP: 2nd Int'l Workshop on Fuzzy
Names, 22-23 Sep 95, Stuttgart", so readers can at least make educated
guesses as to what the associated message may contain, and whether it
might be a good idea to go on reading the announcement.
[2.2] How do I specify into which category my announcement should be put?
The categories currently found in the index pages reflect the spectrum
of events available through these indexes. If you intend to announce an
event not fitting any of the categories present, please suggest a new
category or subcategory with your posting.
Please keep in mind that even if not all relevant categories will be
listed as keywords for the announcement, full-text search still is an
option to get at documents by using (almost) arbitrary key expressions.
[2.3] What to avoid!
Besides the points mentioned elsewhere in this FAQ, here is a list of
things not to do when posting an announcement:
o Do not include a meaningless subject line like "Announcement",
"(no subject)", "submission for news.announce.conferences" in your
posting. Include a descriptive subject line, especially for the
o Do not include any control characters (outside the range of
printable ASCII characters, decimal codes 32..126) in your
message. Use MIME encodings if possible. Remember that character
encodings may differ from system to system.
o Do not submit a given submission more than once (you may resubmit
it a couple of weeks later to get people's attention, but don't
send me three copies per day). I'm already wading through
o Do not submit any announcements without indications of the date(s)
on which the event(s) will take place.
Some of the above points I can correct myself, given enough time.
However, most of the time, this is not exactly the case...
 It's not an announcement, but related to a certain topic present in the
conferences archive. Can I include it in your pages?
It depends. The conferences archive is not intended to play the role of
a virtual library collecting links to all possible (and impossible)
information resources on a given subject. If you maintain pages (or a
server) related to conferences, journals, conference management, or
conference services, let me know. This can be included in the
appropriate category as an additional reference. However, keep in mind
that commercial advertisements for single products or services do not
 When will I see my announcement posted?
If you send us an announcement by using one of the above mechanisms, it
usually reaches me within seconds, once it hits the Internet. Now, take
into account that I am sitting in Stuttgart, Germany (MET/MST which is
GMT-1), and that there are several projects which keep me busy in my
real life. All in all this should get us to a latency of one to seven
working days for posting to n.a.c and the WWW server, where the
newsgroup usually gets the announcement right away when the the
incoming queue is processed.
 How can announcements be updated?
Just send me a new one. By the date and name of the event, I can
identify the old information in the server. If dates change, please
indicate that in your submission. In particular, the expiration dates
of calls for papers are not checked automatically, i.e., unless there
is an update, the CFP will stay in the server until shortly after the
Let me point out once more that it VERY crucial to include the date of
the event in all your correspondence - all events are indexed by date!
 How long are announcements kept?
Old announcements are automagically purged from the index shortly after
the ending date of the respective event. Purging means physical
deletion from the server, i.e., there is no archive of past events
(would anybody want that?).
[7.1] How do I access the archive?
The archive is available only via the WorldWideWeb. It is located on
the server of the Rapid Producty Development Network (http://www.rpd.net)
maintained by Fraunhofer-IAO in Stuttgart, Germany (the URL of the archive
is http://conferences.rpd.net), and provides five ways of finding events
and calls for papers of journals and books:
o through a hierarchical subject index,
o through an alphabetical index by acronyms,
o through a full-text search over all announcements,
o by the place of venue,
o by date (all events overlapping a given date are listed).
The full-text search offers three alternatives: searching the full
announcements, searching the event titles, or searching the
classification keywords. Further options exist to restrict searches to
calls for submissions or journal calls for papers.
[7.2] What are the requirements on Web browsers?
The requirements on Web browsers for accessing the Conference
Announcement Archive are actually minimal. In fact, when you access the
main entry page at http://conferences.rpd.net/, a small
program is run to determine which browser you use, and to return to you
a page appropriate for your browser. This means that if you use
Netscape, pages may use tables and other HTML 3.0 features. However, if
you use lynx or Mosaic, a simple page without these features will
appear. If you use a browser capable of displaying tables, etc., but
still get the simple page initially, please let us know so it can be
fixed for next time you visit us.
[7.3] How do I get more information on an event?
For each event, there is a organizer or contact for specific questions
given. If there are any questions not related to the WWW archive, but
the event itself, contact the organizers or responsible contacts, not
firstname.lastname@example.org. I will not be able to give any more information
[7.4] How does the automatic update service work?
Since October 1995, there is an automatic announcement update service
by e-mail, which allows you to register for certain subject categories,
and which periodically (weekly) sends out updates listing all new and
changed entries in those categories. In case of problems, contact
email@example.com by e-mail.
[7.5] How do I talk to the automatic update service?
Send a message with no subject line and a sequence of commands in the
message body to firstname.lastname@example.org (Note: this is an automated
system, not a human). The commands may be any of the following:
o Address e-mail-address
The e-mail address used to send out periodic updates is also used
to identify posters (yes, I know, this is insecure). The address
in the "From:" field is taken, unless a "Reply-To:" field is
available. If your e-mail address is different from the one found
in the "From:" or "Reply-To:" fields in messages received from
you, specify the address you can be reached at by the Address
statement. If there is more than one Address given, only the last
one is effective.
Return a help message describing available commands and the
service itself a bit.
o Subscribe keyword
Subscribe to any of the available subject categories by including
a Subscribe line with the respective keyword. Multiple keywords
may be specified with multiple Subscribe lines.
o Unsubscribe keyword
This is the inverse function of Subscribe. If you omit the keyword
(i.e., write only Unsubscribe on a single line), you will be
unsubscribed from all subject categories.
Retrieve a list of all known subject categories.
A list of all subject categories you currently have subscribed to
o Other commands may be added in the future, but for now, everything
else is considered an error.
Questions regarding this service should be directed to the e-mail
 Why are these WWW pages so little flashy?
At this point, I should mention that we (Fraunhofer-IAO) do have an
Internet connection at 10 Mbit/s, and that we can get to many places
with as much as 2 Mbit/s. Making pages flashy also isn't the problem.
However, I would assume that most readers of the announcement pages
would appreciate getting these pages fairly quickly even if they only
have an ISDN 64 kbit/s or 14.4 kbit/s link to the Internet. Therefore,
you find numerous simple and small pages which can be downloaded
relatively quickly, rather than pages cluttered with large, meaningless
Also, I don't believe in non-standard Web pages using bizarre features
like the abominable Netscape text blinking attribute...
 Is it possible to include URL references to announcement pages in my
If you would like to include a reference to an index page in one of
your pages, feel free to do so. The names of pages in "Subjects/" and
"Index/" are not likely to change (modulo minor exceptions). Also, the
individual conference pages under "Conf/" are named consistently and
will not change until the event is over. The main entry page for the
announcements index is called "OVERVIEW-en.html". All pages are located
under "http://conferences.rpd.net". If you include a link to
the conference announcement archive in general, please let me know.
If you still have any questions about these pages, or have any suggestions
as to how improvements can be made, feel free to drop me a line at
Moderator of news.announce.conferences
Fraunhofer-Institut fuer Arbeitswirtschaft und Organisation (FhG-IAO)
Nobelstr. 12c Voice: +49-711-970-2013
D-70569 Stuttgart, Germany Fax: +49-711-970-2299
More info: <http://www.iao.fhg.de/Public/leute/jrw-en.html>
Last modified: 1997-04-17