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[] Second email on the "slightly disorganized but very useful" Eclipse Languages Symposium

Architecture Council Members,
Here's a (somewhat late) email about this workshop that we're putting together.  If anyone from your projects or companies is relevant and interested in attending, please forward this to them.  We have quite a few interested people already (20-30), so numbers is not the issue, so only invite people if they are interested, relevant, and will submit a position paper. P.S. Many of the relevant people might already have received their own copy of this email (and even the previous email) , but I wanted to make sure that anyone I missed would be found by you all. Thanks.

First of all, you are receiving this email because you are in one of three groups: (1) planning to attend, (2) thinking of attending, (3) this is the first time you've heard about it.

The "Slightly Disorganized But Very Useful"
Eclipse Languages Symposium

The symposium will be held October 27th and 28th at the QNX headquarters at 175 Terence Matthews Crescent, Kanata, ON, Canada. There is no registration fee for this workshop which also means that you're responsible for your own transportation and accommodation. Sharon (the Eclipse administrator and Ottawa resident) suggests these hotels:
They are all about 10-15 minutes by car from QNX.

We will begin each day at 8:30am.  Not everyone can attend both days (some people are in the CDT workshop that overlaps by a day; some people have early flights out on Friday), but we'll do the best we can. We will have a group dinner outing Thursday evening.

Workshop Format
We'll run the workshop in the LAWST / WOPR style. This means that all attendees must submit a position paper. No paper; no attendance; no exceptions (even Mike and I will write position papers).  The position paper should be on one of the four topics:
  • Eclipse Language Support for dynamically typed languages (Perl, Tcl, Python, PHP, Ruby,etc).
  • Support for writing Eclipse plug-ins in dynamically typed languages (Python, Ruby, Tcl, etc).
  • Generic compiled language debugging infrastructure and implementation
  • Current state and future of the text and document model in Eclipse
The intent of requiring a position paper is to (1) have everyone better prepare by writing – or at least outlining – a paper and reading all the other papers prior to a session, and (2) frankly to filter out the idly curious. These people are not unwelcome, but especially when they dilute the discussion or occupy limited seats then their attendance does not have high priority. The idea is to have brief position papers or longer, more developed papers to help each of us lead a group-wide discussion. In the most recent LAWST workshop session, several papers were only one or two pages long, and the longest was about 25 pages. The flavor is different than traditional conferences, with mostly one-way communication to a large group. These workshop sessions are more like small group peer reviews with lots of impromptu brainstorming.

The position papers are all distributed (email) in advance. The papers will be grouped into approximately six sessions. Not all papers will be included (there might just not be a logical place). Each session will start with presentations by the select authors. Not slick powerpoint presentations, but more of an interactive talk: the author will describe his or her experiences, ideas, difficulties, and so on. A couple powerpoint slides or, better yet, a demo, are acceptable, but the key here is that this is a workshop - an interactive conversation - not a lecture. In general, the talk should be about successes and future successes, but instructive failures are also welcome. After the war stories, there is general discussion between the audience and the speakers - the key feature of the discussion is that it stays focused on the speakers' points and does not devolve into each audience member giving a short speech about his or her own ideas.

The goal is to get a group of smart engineers and researchers together for two days to talk about, and plan the future of, language support in Eclipse.  The symposium will be a very interactive workshop - not a conference with formal papers and lots of bored listeners reading email on their laptops.

The position papers need to be emailed to me by Friday, October 14th.

The CDT Workshop
Note that QNX is hosting the CDT workshop Tue-Wed-Thurs at the same location. In fact, it is QNX's generosity with their space that allows this Languages Workshop to occur.  The key thing to remember is that the CDT Workshop (Tue-Wed-Thurs) is separate from the Languages Workshop (Thurs-Fri). They are co-located to take advantage of many of your travel plans, but they are separate events.  I'm not organizing the CDT Workshop; I am organizing the Languages Workshop.

To attend the Languages Workshop, you must submit a position paper.

I look forward to reading your position paper in two weeks, and to seeing you in Ottawa in a month. 

Bjorn Freeman-Benson
Technical Director, Open Source Process and Infrastructure
Eclipse Foundation
voice:  971-327-7323 (PDT, UTC-7)
email:  bjorn.freeman-benson@xxxxxxxxxxx

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