Tuesday, April 14, 2009


Researchers sometimes argue sideways: "Sponsored search is an important problem. Last year it generated ZZ billions of revenue. I am studying the offline complexity of some vague problem in this area and will show NP Hardness...." I know that is a silly example, but we should ban any paper that quotes the revenue of a business in the Intro. More seriously, I dislike it when theory papers argue as follows: Sentence A, Sentence B. Sentence A is something impressive about a business in $'s, or users or running time or whatever. And Sentence B is the problem they study vaguely in that orbit and their result.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

The authors who write such things are not to be blamed since I recently saw a successful grant proposal using similar argument. But I am happy that this has made life easier for me. You just need to write some silly things about its possible application so that no one questions the importance of your research. I hate to spend time on finding real applications because it kills the joy of doing research. So, please dont ban it. It is good for us theory people.

1:37 PM  

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