by David Vernon
Ten years ago, the inaugural European Conference on Computer Vision was held in Antibes, France. Since then, ECCV has been held biennially under the auspices of the European Vision Society at venues around Europe. This year, the privilege of organizing ECCV 2000 fell to Ireland and, from 26 June to 1 July, Trinity College Dublin hosted what has become one of the most important events in the calendar of the Computer Vision community.
The Trinity campus, set in the heart of Dublin, is an oasis of tranquility and its beautiful squares, elegant buildings, and tree-lined playing-fields provided the perfect setting for the conference. Add to this the superb facilities in the Trinity Conference Centre, six days of uninterrupted sunshine, 280 delegates, and the stage was set for a memorable week.
The first day of the week was devoted to a series of tutorials on focussed topics which were given by international experts in that field. These afforded many delegates an ideal opportunity of getting a snap-shot view of the state of the art in a perhaps unfamilar subject.
The next four days comprised the conference proper and was opened by the Vice-Provost of Trinity College, Professor David McConnell, who set the tone for the coming days with his well-chosen words on the nature and relevance of perception and the need for computational models of vision to enable both industrial applications and reseach in other scientific disciplines. Because ECCV is a single-track conference, it severely limits the number of papers that can be accepted and ensures that they are of the highest quality. During the week, forty-four papers were presented at the podium and seventy-two were presented during daily poster sessions. The proceedings were published by Springer-Verlag as two volumes, each with approximately 900 pages (LNCS Vols. 1842 & 1843).
The final day was devoted to four Workshops on topics ranging from visual surveillance, through 3-dimensional reconstruction of large objects such as buildings, to empirical evaluation of computer vision algorithms.
Whilst the technical excellence of the scientific programme is undoubtedly the most important aspect of ECCV, there are other facets to an enjoyable and productive conference, facets which should engender conviviality, discourse, and interaction - in other words, the social programme! This was extensive and varied and it featured the renowned Trinity Gala Evening with exhibitions of excellent Irish cuisine, music, and dancing; and a reception in the Long Room (Trinitys original library and perhaps one of the most beautiful rooms in the College) where delegates were regaled by the Librarian on the history and future plans of the Trinity College Dublin Library. They also had an opportunity to see the Book of Kells. The conference dinner was set in the splendour of the Royal Hospital Kilmainham and some delegates also enjoyed a trip to Johnny Foxs pub - apparently the highest pub in Ireland for another evening of Irish music and dance.
The goal in organizing ECCV 2000 at Trinity was to ensure that delegates would depart with great memories, many new friends, and inspirational ideas for future research; that they also now think the sun always shines in Ireland is an additional bonus!
Conference Website: http://www.eccv2000.tcd.ie/
David Vernon Conference Chair, ECCV'2000, National University of Ireland, Maynooth
Tel: +971 6 535 5355