Category Archives: INFORMS

INFORMS 2013: Sunday Nuggets

I just published my Sunday blog post at this year’s INFORMS Annual Conference, which is taking place in Minneapolis, MN. Here’s a link to it. Enjoy!

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Tuesday’s Treasures, Wednesday’s Winner, and Final Farewells

Here’s my last post for this year’s INFORMS conference. Miami, here I come!

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Monday Monday, So Good To Me

Here’s my second entry to the INFORMS Conference blog in Phoenix. Enjoy!

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Some Cool Things I Learned on Sunday

I’m blogging for the INFORMS conference in Phoenix this year (as I did last year in Charlotte). Check out my (late-night) Sunday post.

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Looking Forward to Phoenix: My Video

INFORMS is encouraging everyone to create a video explaining what they’re looking forward to at the upcoming meeting in Phoenix. Here’s an excerpt from their page:

We are very excited about our Annual conference in Phoenix this year and we hope you are too! Take a short video (under four minutes) telling or showing us why you are excited to attend the meeting and we’ll send you one of our fun INFORMS t-shirts!

I couldn’t resist; I want one of those T-shirts! So I made a short video with my views and expectations. Here it is (you can also watch it on my YouTube channel):

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A Successful Optimization Conference

Three days, 116 attendees, 105 talks, 8 posters, 3 plenary speakers, 2 featured speakers, and a small ceremony in honor of Robert Fourer. That’s a one-sentence summary of the Fourth INFORMS Optimization Society Conference that took place from February 24th to the 26th on the University of Miami campus. Mother nature cooperated with good weather and the participants did not hesitate to tell us (the organizers) how much they enjoyed their time here in Coral Gables. It was a lot of work, but it was all worth it. I’m exhausted but happy. Thank you all for your kind words, handshakes, and feedback.

The conference was much more than simply giving and attending talks (to paraphrase Michael Trick). There were old friends getting together, there were new friendships (and papers) getting started, there were old/long-forgotten, unfinished papers coming back to life (my case), there were laughs, jokes, and camaraderie. There were inspiring plenary talks that made some of us think (and tweet) about new research directions, and wonder whether we chose the right path. A true networking event.

In Brazil, in the context of a soccer match, we say that a good referee is one whose presence we don’t notice. The conference wasn’t glitch-free (on my end of things), but it was pretty much glitch-free to everyone else not involved in the organization (at least this was the feedback I received). That’s as good as it gets, in my opinion. We wanted to be the soccer referee who wears an invisibility cloak, and it seems to have worked. We (the conference chairs and organizing committee) couldn’t have pulled it off without the tremendous help of many people, and I want to take this opportunity to thank them once more:

From the Management Science Department: our awesome office manager Vanessa Ferguson, and dedicated students Jannelle Chaviano, Jen Verdon, Meiyin Cheng, and William Barnard. Thank you for taking care of the catering, logistics, registration desk, signage, receipts, printing and binding of programs, bags & badges, table decorations, and the 1000 other things that seem to be small but amount to a whole lot when put together.

From the IT and Budget departments at UM: Emil Diego, May Peralta, and Richard Mencke. Thank you for your help with the web site and payment processing.

From the INFORMS offices: Terry Cryan, Ellen Tralongo and Paulette Bronis. Thank you for all your help with the abstract submission system, special requests of all sorts, and formatting of the final program.

From my family: Madeline Keller (a.k.a. my darling wife). Thank you for helping out with all sorts of little things, and for lending us your computer expertise and attention to detail (and for helping me get a beer early at the receptions :-) there must be some advantage to being an organizer, right?). And most importantly, thank you for your patience during my stressful days.

Finally, here are a few of photos taken during the conference. If you have more photos, please send them to me and I’ll be happy to add them to this page.

My vegetarian boxed lunch. Eaten during Manoj Saxena’s plenary:

Last slide of Dimitris Bertsimas’s plenary (click on it to enlarge it, and note the “stochastic analysis *without* probability”):

Me standing on stage minutes before officially closing the conference and introducing our last featured speaker, David Alderson (taken by Mike Trick):

Curious photo of an art piece at the Lowe Art Museum (where the Friday reception was held). According to a number of participants, the man in this photo looks like one of the conference organizers. Can you guess who it is? (Copyright Carlos Betancourt)

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INFORMS Optimization Society Conference: Submission Deadline in Four Days!

The abstract/poster submission deadline for the Fourth INFORMS Optimization Society Conference is this Friday, January 6! There’s still time to get your abstract in. For information about the conference and submission instructions, check the conference web site at http://bus.miami.edu/ios, as well as this previous post.

If you’ve already submitted an abstract, please log into the system and make sure your submission is complete. We now have a tentative schedule online.

I’m looking forward to seeing you in Miami in February!

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