Over 2007-2008, the IAPR Newsletter has had a time of healthy stability in production and distribution, continued growth in content, and added types of features and articles. Here are the numbers comparing the 8 issues of the Newsletter for 2007-2008 against those of the previous 2 years.
Table 1 Comparing most recent 2007-2008 Newsletter issues against previous 2 years.
From this table, one can see that the number of pages per issue has increased by 25%, the number of articles by 22%, the number of conference reports by 50%, and the number of book reviews by 177%.
The increase in conference reports is due in large part to the efforts of Apostolos Antonacopoulos (IAPR Conferences and Meetings Committee chair) and Linda O’Gorman (IAPR Secretariat), who have both diligently informed conference organizers that a report is expected from IAPR-sponsored meetings. I regard the increase in the number of book reviews as a great success. Perhaps the “FREE BOOKS!” headline in each issue has contributed to this. I also have to single out two “star” book reviewers, Jason Dowling and Arjan Kuijper, writing 6 and 4 review articles respectively. Besides the prolificacy of their reviews, I could always count on high quality of writing, unexpected insight into the books they reviewed, and often some much appreciated humor.
Of course, mere numbers do not tell the whole story. The quality of content of the Newsletter is the most important factor. During my first 2 years, we ran a series of articles called “Can you help?” in which the authors sought help with particular research questions that fell within IAPR’s interests. These articles were particularly interesting, and perhaps some coordination with the TCs would generate more of them. In the second 2-year period, we ran a series of articles, “Pattern Recognition in X” (X= sports, entertainment, etc.). During this most recent 2-year period, we ran a new series called “Global Pattern Recognition”. In this series, articles explored the structure and focus of different laboratories throughout the world performing pattern recognition research: US (NIST), France (INRIA), China (NLPR), Germany (DFKI), and India (CSCR). Any of these series could be extended in the future, preferably with additional contributions and suggestions from readers.
In addition to the feature articles, I have tried to encourage more editorials by writing two myself: “The (Frustrating) State of Peer Review” (which elicited much reader response), and “6 Years of Pattern Recognition Progress” in this issue. These follow a previous editorial from Maria Petrou, however I feel there have been too few during my tenure.
Much credit for the professionalism of the Newsletter must go to Linda O’Gorman, Newsletter Layout Editor. She has taken advantage of our electronic html and pdf formats to enhance the look of the Newsletters with inserted pictures, sidebars, book and conference icons, email and web links to authors, and links to references, past articles, calls for papers, sponsoring institutions, etc. She is also responsible for making sure the grammar, spelling, and readability of the text meets the standards of the IAPR Newsletter. I want to also thank Ed Sobczak, IAPR webmaster, who uploaded the issues in a timely manner (and quickly re-uploaded corrected issues after those few mistakes!).
With the October issue, I have completed a 6-year tenure as Newsletter editor – 24 issues. The editor duties will be handed off after this issue. I thank three presidents during that time for their support (Rangachar Kasturi, Walter Kropatsch, and Karl Tombre). I thank the readers for their comments, and most of all, I thank the contributors who have made the IAPR Newsletter informative and enjoyable reading.
IAPR Newsletter Report