At the CS/Econ day, I particularly enjoyed Toumas Sandholm’s talk which showed a commanding depth of understanding and application in automated auctions.
For the machine learning day, I enjoyed several talks and posters (I better, I helped pick them.). What stood out to me was number of people attending: 158 registered, a level qualifying as “scramble to find seats”. My rule of thumb for workshops/conferences is that the number of attendees is often something like the number of submissions. That isn’t the case here, where there were just 4 invited speakers and 30-or-so posters. Presumably, the difference is due to a critical mass of Machine Learning interested people in the area and the ease of their attendance.
Are there other areas where a local Machine Learning day would fly? It’s easy to imagine something working out in the San Francisco bay area and possibly Germany or England.
The basic formula for the ML day is a committee picks a few people to give talks, and posters are invited, with some of them providing short presentations. The CS/Econ day was similar, except they managed to let every submitter do a presentation. Are there tweaks to the format which would improve things?