2015 VGTC ExCom Annual Meeting Minutes

  • Minutes taken by: João Comba (VGTC secretary)
  • Date: Tuesday October 27, 2015
  • Time: 8:10pm – 9:50pm
  • Venue: The Berghoff restaurant, 17 West Adams, Chicago, IL 60603
  • Attendees: Cláudio Silva (VGTC chair), Eduard Gröller, David Ebert, Amitabh Varshney, Hans Hagen, Leila De Floriani, Terry Yoo, Robert Moorhead, Penny Rheingans, Klaus Mueller, Hanspeter Pfister, John Stasko, Mark Livingston, Larry Rosenblum, João Comba, Christopher Collins, William Ribarsky, Maxine Brown, Rachael Brady, Loretta Auvil, Tamara Munzner, Arie Kaufman, L. Miguel Encarnação, Jörn Kohlhammer, Tobias Isenberg, Meghan Haley.
  • Agenda:
    1. Around the table introductions
    2. VTGC member flow
    3. The announcement of the new VGTC charter
    4. VGTC meetings
    6. TVCG SI for Pacific Vis
    7. VTGC finances update
    8. Reports form sponsored conferences: VIS, ISMAR, VR, EuroVis
    9. Planning for VGTC membership maintenance, outreach, and elections
    10. Industrial relationship best practices
    11. VGTC publications manual
    12. Any new business


Around the table introductions

Claudio welcomed all the members of the committee and introduced himself as the new VGTC chair. He explained the structure of the meeting and how it would follow the distributed agenda. Next, he asked everybody for a brief introduction and their position in the VGTC committee.

VTGC member flow

The service of three retiring members was acknowledged: Daniel Acevedo-Feliz (former web master), Christopher Collins (former online Communities chair) and Huamin Qu (former secretary). Claudio introduced the new secretary (João Comba) and mentioned that the other two vacant positions are still to be filled, and asked the other committee members to send suggestions.

The announcement of the new VGTC charter

Klaus explained the VGTC charter distributed to all members. In January of 2014, a committee composed by Klaus, Hanspeter and Robert was formed to update the charter. In the middle of 2014 the updated charter was made available to the ExCom, and received feedback of several members. At the end of 2014 the discussion was extended to the VTGC directors. In July 14, 2015 an electronic voting process took place, and it was approved unanimously on July 31, 2015. It was mentioned that the distributed version was not the last one, which had a 3-7 year term limit, instead of 3-6 year term limit. The correct version will be published on the web. Claudio thanked once more Klaus for conducting this process, and all his work as VGTC chair.

VGTC meetings

Claudio raised the issue of how many VGTC meetings should we have during the year. Currently there is on meeting at VIS. Claudio suggested to have a second meeting at VR or ISMAR, which are approximately six months apart from each other. Rachael questioned what we were trying to accomplish with a second meeting. Claudio explained that several people expressed to him that the meeting at VIS had too many topics, and also having the meeting at VR and ISMAR would allow integrating VGTC into that community. Meghan confirmed this latter remark pointing out her recent experience at participating at VR.

MOTION: Proposal for a VGTC meeting at VR in late March 2016, Greenville South

Carolina: APPROVED (all in favor).


Claudio explained that there has been VIS, VR and ISMAR papers presented at SIGGRAPH and SIGGRAPH Asia. Leila explained the collaboration with SIGGRAPH and SIGGRAPH Asia, and the success of VIS sessions in two years in a row at SIGGRAPH. Claudio mentioned that ACM SIGGRAPH voted on a formal agreement to have cooperation with VGTC. ACM SIGGRAPH wants to have the ability to have a session in one of the VGTC conferences, in a reciprocal way to what they are offering today. Also, they propose a swap of 2 registrations at the conferences involved. Claudio mentioned that there are more details in the document, and that a electronic voting would follow later on. David asked who was responsible for signing the agreement, if it was between the computer societies or the TCs? Claudio proposed that Tamara and vice chair for conferences, Mark Livingston, to revise the document. The document will be sent by mail and an electronic vote will happen by telecom.

TVCG SI for PacificVis

Leila reported on this. IEEE TVCG was approached by the steering committee from PacificVis this past summer suggesting a possible special issue with selected papers from PacificVis into TVCG. The attendance of the conference has doubled and the acceptance rate was below 30%. The last two years PacifiVis had a two-step reviewing process. In the past, 4-6 papers of PacificVis had extended versions, and published in a special session in IEEE TVCG. It was proposed now that a percentage of papers (15-20%, 5 to 6 papers) accepted for PacificVis would go directly into IEEE TVCG. This proposal was for a trial period of 3 years. The transaction committee and other journal boards were consulted about the proposal, and Leila, Klaus and Claudio followed the discussions. From the journal side, the proposal was approved. Leila explained that when a paper goes directly into the journal it needs a signed agreement, and this is the reason for bringing this discussion to VTGC. Clarifications were given from Leila about the issue. MOTION: Proposal for TVCG SI for Pacific Vis: APPROVED (all in favor).

VTGC finances update

Loretta reported. VIS is doing very well this year. VIS had 1112 registrations last year, VIS 2015 already passed 1150 registrations. VIS 2014 finances are still not closed, awaiting return from IEEE. ISMAR is still not closed. VR2014 did really well, ended with a surplus. PacificVis had a surplus of less than U$50. Loretta reminded the importance of closing finances in time. If the conference closes within 6 months, 50% of the surplus goes to the TC. The rate decreases with time. IEEE TC meeting back in June about the money carry over policy from one year to another. IEEE approved that if the conference looses money, the following year conference assumes 1/3 of the deficit. Similarly, if the conference makes money, the following year conference will receive 1/3 of the surplus. Claudio mentioned that on the approval for Pacific Vis, IEEE raised the issue that PV has been losing money for the last 5 years (apart from the small surplus of this year), in the figures of about U$5000 every year. This is an important issue that was communicated to Kwan-Liu Ma on the behalf of Pacific Vis steering committee, following approvals for a conference not doing well will be harder to approve. The budget of 2016 PacificVis is still not approved.

Reports form sponsored conferences: VIS, ISMAR, VR, EuroVis

Tamara reported for VIS. VIS2016 the original hotel backed up from the original deal, and the conference was relocated to the Baltimore Hilton. Since VIS is a growing conference, larger venues are being looked for 2017. Three locations are being searched for to accommodate the size of the conference: Albuquerque, Phoenix and Denver. VIS2018 will be held in Berlin, Germany. Marc reported for ISMAR and VR. ISMAR 2015 was a great success. ISMAR is going to Mexico in 2016. VR was also a great success. Eddie reported for EuroVis. Eurovis 2015 was in Cagliari, Italy and had 250 participants. Eurovis 2016 will be in Groningen, Netherlands. In 2017 it will be located in Barcelona, Spain. In 2018, it will be located in Brno, Czech Republic, in 2018. Eddie mentioned that one thing still to be decided is that there must be a Eurovis papers co-chair from VGTC for the next two years (2017 and 2018).

Planning for VGTC membership maintenance, outreach, and elections

Claudio explained that an issue was raised on planning VGTC membership, issues related to vote eligibility, and how to improve communication members. It was discussed the IEEE members and affiliations and who is eligible to vote. It was pointed out that the charter states that the vice-chair, Rachael, is responsible for keeping the list of people eligible to vote. A committee was formed to elaborate the list of people eligible to vote, headed by Rachael, and composed by Klaus, Tamara and Robert. MOTION: Proposal of a committee composed by Rachael, Klaus, Tamara and Robert to elaborate the list of people eligible to vote: APPROVED (all in favor).

Industrial relationship best practices

Jörn reported on the industrial relationship best practices document distributed to members. Loretta gave some suggestions on how to improve the phrasing of parts of the text. Terry Yoo mentioned that exhibitors are not selling products at VIS, but they are hiring instead. Dave Ebert suggested making official the hiring strategy by exhibitors, with the creation of a job faire, and this information to be updated in the sponsor’s page.

VGTC publications manual

Tobias reported on this. Tobias worked with Meghan in the publication manual, and described the VTCG journal template, which will need to be moved to the VGTC website. There is no need to updates the year in the template anymore. VTCG needs to choose the new web master.

Any new business

Chris mentioned on the web site and the archives, and the support for Tableau for this process. He mentioned problems with IEEE CS regarding the payment of web developers. He also acknowledged the fact that being a member of VGTC was important for his career, and encouraged VGTC to continue having junior members. No further meeting was discussed, and the meeting was adjourned.