Tuesday, October 28, 2008

EuroPLoP 2009 Website update

EuroPLoP 2009 moves a set closer with an update of the website. Its a new fresh look for EuroPLoP. We'll be adding more information in the coming weeks.

For the moment the important thing is the call for papers (CfP) is online here - I will be sending the CfP out to various mailing lists soon.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

EuroPLoP 2009: July 8-12

We've not had time to update the website yet but we've started work on EuroPLoP 2009. It will be (as always) at Kloster Iresee in Germany and will start on the afternoon of Wednesday 8 July and end in the small hours of Sunday 12 July.

Actually, the formal end if late on the Saturday but almost everyone stays on to drink and talk late into the night. On the Sunday morning we hold a final breakfast and there are a couple of admin meetings.

Submission date is yet to be decided but it will be before the end of February 2009 so get writing!

Monday, August 4, 2008

Pictures from EuroPLoP 2008

I've posted some pictures from EuroPLoP 2008 on Flickr - actually I posted them a week or more ago but forgot to link from this blog until just now.

Out of interest I did a Flickr search for other peoples EuroPLoP pictures and found quite a few.

Gregor has a good selection from this year.
Rui Lopes has lots of EuroPLoP 2006.
Keith Braithwaite has some nice ones of Kloster Irsee at EuroPLoP 2005.

Comments on EuroPLoP at

Yishay Mor has some nice things to say about EuroPLoP on another blog.

Its nice to see these comments from a EuroPLoP first timer - reminds me of my own feeling the first time I went to EuroPLoP.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Movie reprise

Here's a small reprise to the artistic activities at EuroPLoP. If you have been at the paint and create session, you may have seen a wheel like this - if not, you may enjoy the movie now...

It is a movie by Tony Hill (see a selection of additional movies here) and actually shows what the wheel pattern is all about (although we might discuss whether or not a wheel is a pattern).

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Hearsay at Irsee

I often think of EuroPLoP as three days of intensive create outpouring by a bunch of very intelligent people. Before we come to the conference most people (over 75%) have written a paper, they have revised the paper and many people have already helped others by shepherding the paper.

Then at the conference we review the paper and suggest improvements. These improvements and the debate is a creative process.

We also have focus groups were people get together to analyze problems and suggest solutions - more creativity.

And in between the workshops and focus groups we have an art studio anyone can visit, we have a evening of conference wide art creativity, people write songs and we produce our own magazine each day of conference. All creative.

The magazine is more of a newsletter, typically 4 or 6 pages and is called Hearsay - a play on the name of the venue, Irsee. Hearsay is a mix of jokes, funny stories, conference pictures and serious information which people want to share with other participants.

Normally these newsletter are only available at the conference but this year we've decided to put them on line, so here they are:
Hearsay is edited by the student helpers at the conference. This year we have André Santos and Andreas Ratzka to thank.

Monday, July 14, 2008

EuroPLoP 2008 - thank you!

A big thank you to everyone who attended EuroPLoP 2008 - another great conference!

There are lots of people we need to thank for helping organize the conference. Lets start with the Programme Committee: Lise Hvatum, Andy Longshaw, Jim Siddle, Uwe Zdun, Klaus Marquardt, Ademar Aguiar, Didi Schuuetz, Michael Weiss, Arno Hasse, Tim Wellhausen, and Kristian Sorensen, thank you very much!

Special mention to Michael Weiss for looking after the website and creating an online submission system, and to Tim Wellhausen for helping with the sponsorship and financial side of the conference.

Then there are the shepherds, thank you shepherds!

A special mention to Uwe Zdun who received this years Shepherding Award.

A big thanks to our sponsors this year: Siemens, Schlumberger, John Willey & Sons and FernUniversitat in Hagen. Sponsorship is vital to keeping the costs per person down at EuroPLoP.

One final sponsor slipped in at the last minute, University Porto have not only sent Ademar Aguiar but a most interesting supply of Port Wine, thank you U Porto.

And thank you to everyone who attended and made this a great conference! I hope to see many of you again next year.

Monday, May 19, 2008

FAQ: Will my paper be included in the proceedings?

After the conference Ehttp://www.blogger.com/img/gl.link.gifuroPLoP publishes a set of proceedings, like these.

All papers which are accepted for the Writers Workshop will automatically be included in the proceedings. Or rather, revised versions will be included. The idea is that the workshop gives the author feedback, the author uses that feedback to improve the paper, and it is that, improved paper, that is included in the proceedings.

Papers in the Writing Group are handled a little differently.

If a paper is accepted to the Writing Group then the paper and author are assigned a shepherd at the conference. The author has Wednesday, Thursday and Friday to get advice from the shepherd and improve the paper.

On Friday night the revised papers are judged by the Writing Group shepherds and those judged to have improved enough are be workshopped with other papers on Saturday. These papers are also - after revision - included in the proceedings.

The only papers which are not included in the proceeding are those which are do not improve enough during the Writing Group to be accepted into a Writers Workshop.

Some people get confused between the Writers Workshop and the Writing Group - I have myself on occasions, the terms are similar. Both are mechanisms for improving papers and both are good. However to get in the proceedings a paper must go through a workshop.

I hope that clears up any confusion.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Book BoF request

Now that the EuroPLoP 2008 review deadline is fast approaching, I've started thinking about the conference itself - how to get there, what to take, etc. Something that I'd personally like to arrange is a Book BoF - if you haven't heard of a BoF before, it's an informal "Birds-of-a-Feather" meeting where people meet up to discuss a subject of mutual interest.

I've been developing a patterns-based book idea for a while now; it's slowly maturing and I'm confident that there's a book (or two) in the idea, however I'd like to find one or two committed co-authors to help out. The feedback I've received from shepherding (and especially writer's workshops) at *PLoP conferences has been invaluable, however I've felt a lack of feedback during the book development process because so far it's been all my own endeavour.

So if you want to get involved, perhaps to provide feedback, or to get on board as a co-author, please get in touch via email or catch me at the conference (assuming all goes well with my paper in the review!). I'm thinking that meeting for an hour in one of the conference rooms should work OK - once I have an idea of a time and place I'll be in touch with everyone who shows an interest.


Thursday, April 10, 2008

Shepherding on its way

Most authors have by now finished their first round of shepherding. This means that a shepherd has inspected the paper and provided initial comments to inspire the authors to improve their paper. You can find a list of papers that are currently shepherded at the EuroPLoP web site: List of papers.

Since shepherding started a bit late, we also decided to move the review deadline for the papers a bit. The new date is May 5th. This will give the authors a bit more time to finish at least one more iteration before the deadline.

Monday, March 10, 2008

EuroPLoP's first sponsors

EuroPLoP 2008 has signed its first sponsors. The publishers John Wiley and Sons have agreed to sponsor the conference again.

We are also receiving sponsorship from FernUniversität in Hagen who will be supplying the computers used at the conference.

We hope to announce more sponsors in the near few weeks.

Submissions closed two weeks ago now and the EuroPLoP committee have been evaluating papers. We are pretty close to announcing which papers will be accepted into Shepherding and which papers will be rejected.

Monday, February 18, 2008

EuroPLoP deadline is today

The deadline is here. We have some submissions but we still have space for more so if you are thinking of submitting please do so today.

It does seem there have been some connectivity problems with the website. We’re not sure why just now but it is working, it seems to be a time out issue rather than anything serious.

If you have any problems please send one of us an e-mail this will a) help us pin down the problems, b) let us know you have something to submit.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

The deadline is 18 February

It always seems to me that there is always a long long time between the EuroPLoP submission deadline and the conference itself. In fact it always seems the deadline is way too early.

As Conference Chair this year I thought it would be my chance to fix this!

Then Till and I sat down (OK, he in Germany, me in England but Skype is a wonderful tool) and Planned Backward (a pattern, by the way, from Mark Prince.)

We knew when the conference was and we looked at all the things that needed to be done between submission and conference. These are:

  • Collect submissions
  • Review submissions
  • Allocate shepherds
  • Shepherding, post review 2
  • Review shepherded papers
  • Shepherding, pre review 2
  • Confirm acceptance
  • Decide workshop groupings
  • Collect final papers
  • Print draft proceedings

Confirm acceptance is actually more important than it looks. For those who work in Universities and other academic institutions it is this acceptance that brings their funding to attend the conference. So they need acceptance as early as possible to get the funding sorted out and get their tickets booked while they are still cheap.

Then there are those people coming from outside Europe who need to get a Schengen visa to attend the conference in Germany. In some countries (e.g. the UK) it can take six weeks and a personal visit to get a visa from the German embassy. So these people need time too.

(Yes I know UK nationals don’t need a visa to go to Germany – hurray for Europe! – but if you are a non-EU citizen living in the UK you probably do. Anyway, its the only German embassy I have experience of and as far I know they are all like this, but I digress.)

When you put it all together the submission deadline needs to be that early. Strange but true.

Still, Till and I did our best to set the deadline as late as possible. However this does mean we have to break a EuroPLoP tradition. The deadline won’t be moving this year.

In past years the submission deadline has slipped back a week or two, this year we don’t have the time to do that.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Time to submit your paper...

Michael, our web chair, has opened the submission page yesterday. This means that you can send us your paper. Please go to http://hillside.net/europlop/.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

The artistic side of EuroPLoP

EuroPLoP is to a large extent about creativity. This is why we will have George Platts with us again in 2008. He is the artist in residence of EuroPLoP and does a great job in freeing the participants' minds for new ideas.

In 2007, Osorio Abath Neto filmed some of these activities. His video is postetd at YouTube.

BTW: George has a large affinity to the patterns community and is also making artistic sessions at OOPSLA .

Have fun!

Monday, January 7, 2008

PLoP on Wikipedia

Regular EuroPLoP attendees might be interested in contributing to the PLoP article on Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pattern_Languages_of_Programming

Dirk Riehle has started to push this article forward. Now it is your job to bring in the European touch in this article ;-).

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Thematic Tracks for EuroPLoP 2007

First of all: Happy new year!

This year, we have introduced thematic tracks to extend the common themes of EuroPLoP. Thematic track organizers will work hard on bringing together experts with an interest in the thematic track to push pattern research forward in this specific area. Besides the traditional themes of EuroPLoP (e.g., Software development, Software design and architecture, Software management and development processes, Human computer interaction, or Business and organizational questions) we will now host the following three thematic tracks:

"Pragmatic and systematic approaches in applying patterns"
Organized by Paris Avgeriou (University of Groningen, The Netherlands), Neil B. Harrison (Utah Valley University, USA), and Uwe Zdun (Vienna University of Technology, Austria)
Contact: Paris Avgeriou, paris@cs.rug.nl

The application of the different types of patterns in practice has not met the expectations of the patterns community. Most practitioners are aware of the GoF patterns and some idioms in specific programming languages or platforms, but few of them work systematically with patters for architecture, analysis, process etc. The discipline of software engineering is significantly lacking in incorporating patterns in standardized and well-proven processes, methods, techniques and tools. This thematic track aims at studying the application of patterns in practice and enforcing the links between the patterns community and the practitioners. It envisions papers that present not only patterns but also their practical applications in real industrial projects, as well as papers on systematizing the application of patterns. It aims at stimulating a general discussion on how to disseminate the patterns literature more in the higher education and training. It hopes to provide visibility to research attempts for integrating patterns in software engineering industrial practices.

Patterns for Collaboration Technology and Processes
Organized by Stephan Lukosch (FernUniversität in Hagen, Germany), Gwendolyn L. Kolfschoten (Delft University of Technology, the Netherlands), Gert-Jan de Vreede (Institute for Collaboration Science, University of Nebraska at Omaha, USA) and Robert O. Briggs (Institute for Collaboration Science, University of Nebraska at Omaha, USA)
Contact: Stephan Lukosch, Stephan.Lukosch@Fernuni-Hagen.de

Designing collaboration technology and processes is a challenging task that often is poorly understood by practitioners. In particular, the design of collaboration technology and processes heavily depends on human factors. As such it is highly non-deterministic and complex as it has to consider the mutual understanding of the group members. The key challenge in these settings is twofold: a) how to design productive group processes for collaboration, and b) how to model, embed, or implement these group processes in computer technology and in the organization. Over the past years, various pattern based approaches have been developed to support the design of collaboration technology and processes. Early patterns for groupware development focussed on low-level issues, e.g., on infrastructures required to implement groupware. More recently, there is a growing interest in the definition and use of high-level patterns describing HCI issues in the context of groupware systems as well as patterns that focus on the design and facilitation of group processes, e.g. thinkLets. In this thematic track, we want to explore the characteristics and challenges of both high-level and low-level patterns for collaboration technology and processes.

Patterns for Tools and Pedagogies for Higher Education
Organized by Symeon Retalis (University of Piraeus, Greece) and Christian Kohls (KMRC – Knowledge Media Research Center, Tübingen, Gemany)
Contact: Symeon Retalis, retal@unipi.gr

Design patterns are about educating novices so that they can act as experts. Naturally, they can also educate educators so that they improve their teaching. This can mean that patterns describe innovative best practice of teaching but it can also mean that patterns describe tools that support the interaction between teacher, learner, and the subject that should be learned.

This thematic track will bring together experts from two areas of pattern research. Professional educators are invited to submit patterns for designing and structuring courses and other learning episodes. Designers of learning tools (E-Learning, CSCL) and multimedia content can contribute their knowledge on how to support good pedagogy with technology.

The submission procedure for thematic tracks is the same as for general submissions. The submission deadline is February 18. Please contact the organizers of the thematic tracks for more details.