20th International World Wide Web Conference – WWW 2011

Posted by Salvatore Scellato

I am just back from Hyderabad, in India, where I attended the 20th International World Wide Web Conference, also known as WWW 2011, to present our work on tracking geographic social cascades to improve video delivery.  This conference, organised as usual by the International World Wide Web Conference Committee (IW3C2),  represents the annual opportunity for the international community to discuss and debate the evolution of the Web, providing a mixture of academic and industrial content.

The word cloud shows pretty well the main themes of the conference this year, which heavily revolved around two large pivotal aspects: "social" and "search". Interestingly, there was not any attempt of merging the two things together, as Aardvark tried last year. Not surprisingly, "networks" are still popular in the community, and "Twitter" still enjoys a lot of interest, even though this may change with their new controversial Terms Of Service, which are likely to hamper social media data harvesting.

Overall it is a fairly big conference, with 2 initial days of workshops, tutorial and panels and then 3 days with 81 research papers. Also, there were three world-known personalities such as Dr. Abdul Kalam, Sir Tim Berners-Lee and Christos Papadimitriou that gave a keynote each. I will give a brief summary of the main research themes, with pointers to the most interesting papers. However, it was physically impossible to attend all the research sessions, as they were often happening simultaneously: you can find much more information on the conference website and on the official proceedings.