Message from the 2020 Program Chairs-in-Chief

W. K. Chan, City University, Hong Kong
Bill Claycomb, Carnegie Mellon University, USA
Hiroki Takakura, National Institute of Informatics, Japan

Welcome to COMPSAC 2020, the 44th IEEE Computer Society International Conference on Computers, Software & Applications, and the first COMPSAC to be conducted without a physical meeting – an unconference! “Driving Intelligent Transformation of the Digital World” is our theme this year. Given the circumstances of the global COVID-19 pandemic, it is clear that staying relevant in a constantly evolving digital landscape is a challenge faced by researchers, developers, and producers in virtually every industry and area of study. Furthermore, though once limited to software-enabled devices, the ubiquity and increased reliance on digitally-enabled systems makes this challenge a universal issue. As relevance fuels change, many influencers will offer solutions that benefit their own priorities. Fortunately, history has shown that the building blocks of digital change are forged by those conducting foundational research and development of digital systems and human interaction. Those building blocks are then applied in innovative and novel ways that improve the ability of computing systems to provide services intended to improve our world. For instance, artificial intelligence (AI) is not new, but now that processing and data storage capabilities are widely available commodities, AI is utilized in numerous capacities, from vehicle safety systems, to virtual reality medical devices, to multi-user interactive gaming. The authors included in these proceedings, as well as all those who submitted papers to COMPSAC 2020, are those who have seized the opportunity to drive the use of computers, software, and applications in transforming the digital world, and their results will help define the path ahead.

We received over 450 submissions this year, to both our conference tracks and associated workshops. Using a double-blind system, each paper was reviewed by at least three Program Committee members. Symposia Chairs then made recommendations to the entire Program Committee for which papers to accept as regular papers, short papers, or fast abstracts. At the Program Committee meeting in March, we accepted 69 regular papers and 69 short papers. Also, 76 papers that were not accepted for the main conference were referred to COMPSAC workshops and fast abstracts. An additional 146 papers were submitted directly to our associated workshops. We extend our heartfelt gratitude to all submitting authors, and to more than 400 Program Committee Members who volunteered their time and effort to peer-review each paper, and to those who attended the Program Committee meeting. The workshops chairs, Ji-Jiang Yang, Yuuichi Teranishi, Dave Towey, and Sergio Segura, have done an outstanding job coordinating 28 workshops this year. We also recognize the General Chairs, Mohammad Zulkernine, Edmundo Tovar, and Hironori Kasahara, for their support and encouragement. Sheikh Iqbal Ahamed has worked tirelessly and diligently for many months to support our efforts as Steering Committee Vice-Chair. We also recognize the invaluable guidance, advice, support from Sorel Reisman, COMPSAC Standing Committee Chair, during this particularly challenging conference year.

While we will miss seeing everyone this year, we hope you will join us next year, again in Madrid, Spain, for COMPSAC 2021!