HCOMP 2013

Conference on Human Computation & Crowdsourcing
November 6-9, 2013 - Palm Springs, California USA

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From the Chairs:
Welcome to the First Conference on Human Computation and Crowdsourcing (HCOMP) held in Palm Springs, California.  We’re excited about our collaboration with supportive colleagues and the AAAI to launch HCOMP as an annual conference on human computation and crowdsourcing.  The conference comes on the heels of four successful HCOMP workshops, including two workshops hosted at the annual AAAI conference.

The HCOMP conference was created as a venue for exchanging ideas and developments on principles, experiments, and implementations of systems that rely on programmatic access to human intellect to perform some aspect of computation, or where human perception, knowledge, reasoning, or coordinated physical activities contributes to the operation of larger systems and applications. Topics covered in the evolving discipline of human computation and crowdsourcing include efforts in human-computer interaction (HCI), computer-supported collaborative work (CSCW), cognitive psychology, organizational behavior, economics, information retrieval, databases, computer systems, optimization, and multiple areas of artificial intelligence (AI), such as vision, speech, robotics, machine learning, mechanism and market design, and planning.  The links to AI are as strong as those to HCI, CSCW, and economics;  human computation promises to play an important role in research on principles of artificial intelligence as well as in the engineering of systems that can take advantage of the (changing) complementarities of human and machine intellect.

We worked with a strong and engaged program committee on the joint challenges of organizing HCOMP 2013 and laying the foundations for a successful annual meeting for a new and evolving discipline.  We received 84 full-paper submissions and accepted just below 30% of the submissions. Decisions on acceptance of papers were made in a two-day labor-intensive in-person program committee meeting at Microsoft Research in Redmond.  The in-person meeting provided everyone on the committee the opportunity to understand each paper's contributions, strengths, and shortcomings, and enabled the committee to leverage the joint expertise of committee members. Where needed, additional expert reviews were elicited at the meeting to supplement the original reviews and inform the final decisions.

We felt it important within such a fast-evolving discipline to provide a venue that would encourage the exchange of less-developed but still promising ideas.  For this, we invited submissions to a Works-in-Progress track.  Each submission to this track received feedback from at least two reviewers.  The 51 submissions accepted to this track are included in a companion, non-archival adjunct proceedings. We expect that the collection of works-in-progress will stimulate thinking and discussion at the meeting and beyond, and expect many of these works to inform future research directions. We hope the track will invite people with efforts underway to attend the meeting and to share their ideas with colleagues.

The HCOMP 2013 meeting includes presentations of new research, works-in-progress, demonstration sessions, and invited talks. A day of workshops and tutorials follow the main conference.  HCOMP 2013 workshops include, Crowdsourcing at Scale, Human and Machine Learning in Games, and Scaling Speech, Language Understanding and Dialogue through Crowdsourcing. HCOMP will also include a two-day hands-on CrowdCamp aimed at providing an environment for turning creative crowdsourcing ideas into concrete prototypes.  A half-day tutorial on Incentives in Human Computation rounds out the program.
We thank the program committee and auxiliary reviewers, as well as our special chairs, including Jeffrey Bingham, chair of the Works-in-Progress track, Aditya Parameswaran, chair of the workshops and tutorials program, Lydia Chilton, chair of CrowdCamp, and our sponsorship chair, Michael Kearns.  We are grateful for support from Amazon, Facebook, Google, and Microsoft Research.  Finally, we thank Carol Hamilton and the rest of the staff at AAAI for their professional support.

We are excited about rolling out the first HCOMP conference.  We are confident that the annual HCOMP meeting will come to play an important role in the rhythm of scholarly research and exchange of ideas among researchers, engineers, and practitioners across a spectrum of disciplines. 

Bjoern Hartmann and Eric Horvitz
Co-chairs, HCOMP 2013