SIGMOBILE FY'99 Annual Report
July 1998 - June 1999
Submitted by: Victor Bahl, SIGMOBILE Vice Chair
SIGMOBILE solidified its position as a healthy and vibrant
technical organization focussed on issues relevant to
its members, who share a common interest in researching,
building, and using mobile networking and computing applications
and services. The organization continued to grow in all
its dimensions -- organizing and establishing its conferences
as the most prestigious events in the field, improving
the reputation of its publications with great reports
and articles, and increasing the awareness of the research
its members are carrying out, within the academic, industrial,
and governmental agencies world-wide.
SIGMOBILE's annual conference,
held in Seattle, Washington, was a resounding success.
The conference was attended by over 500 people from 30
countries, a 100% increase over the previous year (which
itself was a banner year). The conference was supported
by 24 industrial sponsors, proving that SIGMOBILE has
indeed fostered a strong relationship between industry
and academic researchers. Although primarily a research
conference, dozens of companies exhibited their products,
and the conference, for the first time in its history,
was covered both by mainstream media such as the Seattle
Post-intelligencer and ABC.com news as well as by academic
SIGMOBILE's official publication,
continued to maintain its reputation as a high quality
scientific journal. Due to a recently increased page budget,
the journal was able to publish some of the largest and
highest-quality issues to date. Particular highlights
of the year included papers from SIGMOBILE Award winners,
articles on current mobile computing standards from leaders
of the standards boards; and reprinted seminal and classical
papers in ubiquitous computing; as well as our regular
features and peer-reviewed, highly selective technical
Overall, 1998-99 was a great year for SIGMOBILE.
II. Executive Committee Additions
We are delighted to announce that Prof. Sajal Das of
the University of Texas at Arlington has accepted our
invitation to join SIGMOBILE's officer roster as its
Publicity Director. In this position, Sajal will work
closely with the other Chairs to come up with innovative
ways of promoting and increasing the visibility of our
organization and our journals.
Sajal was invited because of his strong organizational
and publicity skills, which he has demonstrated repeatedly
over the last several years. In 1998, with SIGMOBILE's
endorsement, he started a new ACM workshop on "Wireless
Mobile Multimedia" which became one of the most successful
workshops SIGMOBILE has ever sponsored. In addition,
he is the founder of the annual IEEE workshop on "Distributed
Interactive Simulation and Real-Time Applications" and
has assisted in many IEEE Technical Committees. His
enthusiasm for the job and the energy he will bring
to it were a strong factor in his appointment.
We are very happy to have Sajal on our team and are
looking forward to working with him as he strengthens
an area of SIGMOBILE that has been slightly problematic,
i.e., -- worldwide name recognition.
III. Publications Initiatives
MC2R has become a significant scientific
journal. We have been uncompromising in maintaining
the highest possible publication standards. Since our
last report, five additional issues have been published,
between July 1998 and August 1999. Each issue included
journal-style and tutorial-style scientific papers that
had received double-blind peer-reviews. Our acceptance
rate for technical papers has lingered between 16 to
17% per issue. Only papers with exceptional reviews
were accepted for publication. Most of these have been
cited by other researchers in several other leading
In addition to top-quality papers, we have continued
to regularly publish meeting reports from the Internet
Engineering Task Force (IETF), the Wireless ATM Forum
(WATM), IEEE and ACM conference and workshop reports,
book reviews, and opinion columns and essays from established
leaders in our field. Our page count per issue has gone
up an average of 50% from last year, varying between
52 and 72 pages per issue. Despite the increase in the
number of submitted and ultimately published papers,
MC2R has managed to maintain a low
average turnaround time of less than 6 months between
submission and physical publication.
Since its inception in April 1997, we have successfully
delivered 11 issues of MC2R to the SIGMOBILE
Some important initiatives undertaken during this past
This journal focuses on the networking and user aspects
of the expanding field of wireless and mobile networking.
It provides a common and global forum for archival contributions
documenting these fast growing areas of interest. The
journal publishes refereed articles dealing with research,
experience, and management of wireless networks. Its
aim is to allow the reader to benefit from experience,
problems, and solutions described. Regularly addressed
issues include: Network architectures for Personal Communications
Systems; wireless LAN's; radio, tactical, and other
wireless networks; design and analysis of protocols;
network management and network performance; network
services and service integration; nomadic computing;
internetworking with cable and other wireless networks;
standardization and regulatory issues; specific system
descriptions; applications and user interfaces; and
enabling technologies for wireless networks.
MONET's technical scope reflects the emerging symbiosis
of portable computers and wireless networks, addressing
the convergence of mobility, computing, and information
organization, its access and management. The journal
publishes Special Issues in all areas of this field.
In approving Special Issues, the journal places an equal
emphasis on the various areas of nomadic computing,
data management, related software and hardware technologies,
and mobile user services, alongside more "classical"
topics in wireless and mobile networking. The journal
documents practical and theoretical results that make
a fundamental contribution in these areas.
- Area Editor Appointments
Two new Areas Editors were appointed to the Editorial
Board of MC2R:
With the addition of Mani and Hari, MC2R's
editorial board comprises 14 Area Editors, 7 Feature
Editors, 3 Advisory Board Members, an Associate Editor,
and an Editor-in-Chief.
- Prof. Mani Srivastava joined the Editorial
board of MC2R in May 1999. He joins
us as the Editor for the area: Energy Conservation
and Power Management.
Mani is an Associate Professor in the Electrical
Engineering Department at the University of California,
Los Angeles (UCLA). He received a B. Tech. degree
from the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur,
and the M.S. & Ph.D. degrees from University of
California at Berkeley in 1987 and 1992, respectively.
Prior to joining UCLA, he was with Bell Labs in
the Networked Computing Research Department from
1992 to 1996.
- Prof. Hari Balakrishnan joined the Editorial
board of MC2R in September 1998. He
joins us as the Editor for the area: Location-Dependent
Applications and Service Location
Hari is an Assistant Professor in the Department
of Computer Science at the Massachusetts Institute
of Technology (MIT). He received a B. Tech degree
in 1993 from the Indian Institute of Technology
Madras, and his M.S. & Ph. D. degrees from the
University of California at Berkeley in 1996 and
1998, respectively. Hari was awarded the 1998
ACM Doctoral Dissertation Award for his Ph. D.
thesis Challenges to Reliable Data Transport
over Heterogeneous Wireless Networks. This
is the first Ph.D. thesis award presented by ACM
in the field of wireless and mobile networking.
- Cross-Indexing of Articles
We are in the final stages of negotiating with the
Institute of Scientific
Information (ISI) to index MC2R's papers
in their Scientific Citation Index Database. Like
(in which our papers are already indexed), ISI has
a large worldwide database of scientific papers, journals,
Indexing and abstracting is a service for our authors
that we consider extremely important for MC2R's
health. Not only does it increase the prestige of
our journal, but it also encourages researchers
to submit their papers to MC2R, as it
exposes their research to a much larger community
of researchers and practitioners worldwide.
- "Top 10" List
We are in the final stages of compiling a list of
"best of the best" papers in the areas of mobile communications
and wireless networking.
Each of our Area Editors was asked to recommend
his or her top 8 choices of what they considered
ground-breaking research papers in their area of
expertise, and to recommend their top 2 choices
of tutorial papers that they considered to be a
must-read. Our objective is to publish this "list-of-recommendions"
on MC2R's web page and in one of the
upcoming issues, for all who are interested in learning
from the experts about the best papers on a particular
topic. Our motivation is to capitalize on the expertise
and experience of our editorial board to help younger
researchers and practitioners. Additionally and
perhaps just as important is the fact that this
list will give credit to those who have made pioneering
- Health Aspects of Wireless Technology
Beginning with the January 1998 issue (Volume 3, Number
1), we initiated a new regular feature dedicated to
discussing the impact of RF and IR technology on our
health. The goal of this column is to educate researchers,
engineers, and users about what is known scientifically
about IR and RF health effects and what is pure speculation.
We feel this information is valuable to our community,
which is interested in comprehending the significance
of the latest medical discoveries in this field of
Prof. James C. Lin, from the University of Illinois
at Chicago, accepted our invitation to write this
column as a regular feature of MC2R.
James Lin is a Professor in the Department of Bioengineering
and is a recognized authority in the field of health
hazards in wireless communications. He has written
more that 140 journal papers and is an author or
editor of six books.
On a related note, as a gesture of good-will and
healthy cooperation (no pun intended), we agreed
to a proposal by Dr. Roth Stone, Editor-in-Chief
of the IEEE Antennas and Propagation Magazine,
to co-publish Dr. Lin's column in his magazine.
We are convinced that the readership of the two
publications has little overlap, and thus providing
greater exposure to Dr. Lin's articles, is the right
thing to do for the sake of both communities.
- Web Presence
We maintained and added new material to our web site.
- We have added a questionnaire, soliciting feedback
from our readers about the quality of our journal.
The questionnaire is extremely simple (taking
less than 5 minutes to complete), and is very
valuable to us as we use the feedback to improve
MC2R further. It is worth mentioning
that looking at the feedback we have received
to-date, we are proud to state that everyone who
filled in the questionnaire gave MC2R
an "excellent" rating.
- Our web site has remained the focal point for
most author submission activities. It provides
document preparation information, and feedback.
We are able to maintain short turnaround times
by working exclusively through electronic mail,
in order to reduce author, referee, and editor
- Our list of Ph.D.
theses granted in the field of mobile networking
and computing has grown to a listing of 58 theses,
many of which are available for download.
- We have continued to maintain a comprehensive
of conferences, workshops, and symposia related
to our field. Wherever possible we include links
to the web sites of the listed events.
- Our table
of contents, with abstracts from past and future
issues of MC2R is provided
on this site and is up-to-date.
Referee solicitation forms and reviewer guidelines
are provided on our site. Because of this, over
the last year, we now have a large list of reviewers
qualified to review articles submitted to the
- Noteworthy News
Mahmoud Naghshineh, an Area Editor of MC2R,
has been invited to serve as the next Editor-in-Chief
of the IEEE Personal Communications magazine.
Mahmoud has accepted the invitation and will take
over from the current Editor in January 2000. This
is a significant position, which recognizes Mahmoud's
standing within the IEEE community, and we view it
as a statement about the caliber of people involved
with our journal. It also opens up a new avenue for
us to work closely with the IEEE as we strengthen
our community further.
IV. Conference Highlights
The Fourth Annual International Conference on Mobile
Computing and Networking (MobiCom'98) was held 25-30
October 1998, in Dallas, Texas. The conference sessions
took place in the
Omni Dallas Hotel Park West, located about 5
miles from Dallas-Fort Worth Airport.
MobiCom'98 marked the fourth consecutive year of
growth for this conference series. We received 147
research paper submissions from around the globe,
a growth in number of submissions of about 45% over
the previous year's conference. Of these, 27 papers
were selected for presentation. Although the largest
number of submissions, as was the case in 1997,
came from the United States, a third of the accepted
papers were from outside the United States.
Three workshops were held in parallel on the day
following the conference (on October 1, 1997). Of
these, the workshop on wireless multimedia was new
(additional information about the workshops is provided
below in Section V).
Overall, MobiCom'98 featured an excellent technical
program on the cutting edge of mobile computing
and networking. We also had an enjoyable social
program, including welcoming reception, a dinner
banquet, and a "Night on the Town".
The Fifth Annual International Conference on Mobile
Computing and Networking (MobiCom'99) was held August
15-20, 1999, in Seattle, Washington.
We believe that MobiCom'99 was by far the best
MobiCom we have ever organized. The conference was
held at the Bell
Harbor International Conference Center., a world-class
conference facility located in the heart of downtown
Seattle and on the waterfront. Three social events
with sumptuous meals and liquor delighted the attendees.
These events included (1) the Chairman's Welcome
Reception, with an accompanying first-ever industry
exhibition; (2) the Dinner Banquet at the world
Needle; and (3) the Student, Faculty Dinner
Cruise, which included a three-hour cruise of the
Puget Sound, with food and spirits served.
We pushed the limit on every aspect of the conference
-- from tutorials, to panels, to papers, to workshops,
to social events, to facilities. Several highlights
and noteworthy facts include:
The technical program consisted of eleven non-overlapping
sessions, including a new, highly entertaining "MobiCom
Challenges" session with five papers describing
wild ideas and technical challenges facing our community
in the next century.
- MobiCom'99 had over 500 participants this year
up more than 100% from last year. For the
first time in its history, the conference was
completely sold out. We were unable to accommodate
everyone who wanted to be at this event and had
to turn people away, as our facilities were stretched
to the limit. Both conference hotels were completely
sold out, and we had to add a third to accommodate
attendees at a reasonable rate. Over 30 countries
were represented at this conference.
- MobiCom'99 received the highest number of
paper submissions (170) in its history, up
121% from just four years ago, and the highest
number of tutorial proposals (18), up 184% from
- A record number of professional organizations
(9) from around the world endorsed and cooperated
with MobiCom, several for the first time like
-- the IEE (UK), the IEICE (Japan), the USENIX
Association, and ACM SIGMOD.
- A record number of corporations (24)
financially supported MobiCom'99, and a >record
number participated in the exhibition that
we tried for the first time this year
- MobiCom'99 had the highest number of tutorials
(up 60% from last year), the highest number
of co-located workshops, and the highest
number of invited speakers.
- For the first time in its history, we had reporters
from mainstream press cover the conference.
Reports about the conference, the speakers, the
panels, etc., were published in the
Post-Intelligencer (August 18, 1999),
20), MicroNews, etc.
Overall, we were very happy with the way MobiCom'99
turned out. It was a remarkable success, and we
hope to repeat this success in Boston, Massachusetts,
the venue for MobiCom 2000.
V. Workshops / Symposiums
SIGMOBILE members can register for a meeting sponsored
by SIGMOBILE at the lowest registration rate for their
respective appropriate category (student/full-time,
for soliciting "in-cooperation" status from ACM SIGMOBILE
The following three workshops were sponsored by SIGMOBILE
and were co-located with MobiCom'98 in Dallas, Texas,
held in parallel on the day following the MobiCom'98
conference (30 October 1998):
- The Second International Workshop on Discrete Algorithms
and Methods for Mobile Computing and Communications
- The Third International Workshop on Satellite-Based
Information Services -- WOSBIS'98
- The First International Workshop on Wireless Mobile
Multimedia -- WoWMoM'98
Due to lack of sufficient interest, the previously
planned workshop on "Service Discovery in the Internet"
The following four workshops were sponsored by SIGMOBILE
and were co-located with MobiCom'99 in Seattle, Washington,
held in parallel on the day following the MobiCom'99
conference (20 August 1999):
- The Third International Workshop on Discrete Algorithms
and Methods for Mobile Computing and Communications
- The First International Workshop on Data Engineering
for Wireless and Mobile Access -- MobiDE'99
- The Second International Workshop on Wireless Mobile
Multimedia -- WoWMoM'99
- The International Workshop on Modeling and Simulation
of Wireless and Mobile Systems -- MSWiM'99
In addition, ACM SIGMOBILE "cooperated" with several
international workshops this last year, including:
Second IEEE Conference on Open Architectures and Network
Programming, New York, New York, USA, 26-27
WINLAB/Berkeley Focus '99 on Radio Networks Everywhere,
New Brunswick, New Jersey, USA, 24-25 May 1999
Second IEEE Workshop on Mobile Computing Systems and
Applications, New Orleans, Louisiana, USA,
25-26 February 1999
Symposium on Handheld and Ubiquitous Computing (HUC
99), Karlsruhe, Germany, 27-29 September 1999
on Mobile Data Access , Singapore, 19-20 November
The 1998 SIGMOBILE Award for Outstanding Contribution
to Research on Mobility of Systems, Users, Data and
Computing was given to Dr. Robert W. Brodersen,
Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
at the University of California, Berkeley, USA and Scientific
Director of the Berkeley Wireless Research Center.
Prof. Broderson is a pioneer in wireless communications
at the level on which everything depends: visionary
and low-power hardware design of radios and radio systems
for personal wireless communications. He was given this
award for the work he did in the InfoPad project and
the significance this research project has had both
in academia (graduating well trained students) and in
Industry (through products that have come out since).
The principal nominator was Prof. David Goodman, Director
of the Wireless Information Networking Laboratory (WINLAB)
and a Professor at Rutgers University. The other nominators
were: Dr. Andrew Viterbi from Qualcomm, Dr. Bob Hewes
from Texas Instruments Laboratories, Dr. Alan McLaughlin
from MIT Lincoln Labs, and Prof. Rajeev Jain from the
University of California, Los Angeles. The award was
presented to Prof. Brodersen by Dr. Victor Bahl, SIGMOBILE's
Vice Chairman, during the opening session of MobiCom'98.
The 1998 Best Student Paper Award at MobiCom'98
went to Young-Bae Ko, a graduate student in the
Computer Science Department at the Texas A&M University,
for his paper titled, "Location-Aided Routing (LAR)
in Mobile Ad Hoc Networks". The award plaque (along
with an honorarium) was presented during the opening
ceremonies of the conference in Dallas by the Technical
Program Committee Chair Dr. Arvind Krishna.
The 1999 SIGMOBILE Award for Outstanding Contributions
to Research on Mobility of Systems, Users, Data and
Computing\/b> was given to Dr. Mark D. Weiser, Chief
Technology Officer of Xerox Palo Alto Research Center
(PARC). Through his inspiring technical vision, effective
evangelism and strong leadership, Dr. Weiser has inspired
an entire generation of computer scientists to tackle
the hardest problems of mobile computing and wireless
networking. The award was given in recognition of Dr.
Weiser's numerous contributions and visionary leadership
in the field of Ubiquitous Computing.
The principal nominator was Prof. Randy Katz, Department
Chairman of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
at the University of California Berkeley. The other
nominators were: Dr. Victor Bahl from Microsoft Research,
Dr. Roy Want from Xerox Palo Alto Research Center, Prof.
Leonard Kleinrock from University of California Los
Angeles, and Prof. David B. Johnson from Carnegie Mellon
University. The award was presented to Dr. Weiser's
daughter Nicole by Dr. Victor Bahl during the opening
session of MobiCom'99.
The 1999 Best Student Paper Award for MobiCom'99 went
to Amiya Bhattacharya, a graduate student in the Computer
Science Department at the University of North Texas,
for his paper titled, "LeZi-Update: An Information-Theoretic
Approach to Track Mobile Users in PCS Networks".
VII. Logo Contest
To improve SIGMOBILE name recognition, we organized
a worldwide SIGMOBILE
Logo Design Contest. The contest was open to everyone
in the community (both members and non-members of SIGMOBILE).
The objective was to solicit an exciting logo that best
represents our vibrant community. Participants were
asked to keep the following criteria in mind when designing
their logos: (1) The logo had to be cool. We wanted
submissions that could be used by SIGMOBILE for at least
10 years. (2) The logo had to be unique. We put the
responsibility on the participants to send us only those
logos that belonged to them. (3) The logo had to be
In response to our call for participation, we received
30 entries. The winner of this contest will be selected
by a committee consisting of the ACM SIGMOBILE Executive
Committee and other active members.
We are currently in the final stages of completing
this contest and the winner will be announced soon.
VIII. Annual Business Meeting
On October 28, 1998, SIGMOBILE
held its first annual public business meeting. The meeting
was held at the Omni Dallas Hotel, during MobiCom'98.
The 1999 annual business meeting was held on August 17,
1999 at the Bell Harbor Conference Center in downtown
Seattle, Washington, during MobiCom'99. Both meetings
were attended by most of the SIGMOBILE officers and several
IX. Collaborative Efforts with other SIGs, Sibling Societies, and Industry
MobiCom'98 was co-sponsored by
and IEEE Communications
Society. Financial support for the conference was
provided by Microsoft
MobiCom'99 was Technically Co-Sponsored by
Communications Society, in cooperation with ACM
The USENIX Association;
the IEICE; and
the IEE. Financial
support for the conference was provided by Intel,
WD, CUE, Go
In Motion / Blackbury, WAP
Atlantic Mobile, Intersil
Corporation / Harris Semiconductors, Lucent,
X. Future Plans
Our membership has stayed steady for this past year.
Although this was slightly disappointing for many of
us in the Executive Committee, we were happy to note
that while SIG memberships within ACM have in general
been declining, SIGMOBILE's membership has remained
solid. Our retention rate continues to be the highest
among all SIGs. We are taking concrete steps to increase
our visibility in the community and have appointed a
Publicity Director to focus on our ability to attract
new members. We have worked hard to improve our conferences
and journals and hope to see the fruits of these efforts
in the year ahead.
2000, our flagship conference, will be held in Boston,
Massachusetts. Boston is one of most high-tech areas
of the US, and also has one of the largest number of
institutes of higher learning in the country. By holding
MobiCom in Boston, we are hoping to attract a large
number of attendees from the local industry and from
universities. The General Chair for this conference
is Raymond Pickholtz, from the George Washington University,
and the Technical Program Committee Co-Chairs are Dr.
Ramon Caceres, from AT&T Labs, and Prof. J.J. Garcia-Luna-Aceves,
from the University of California, Santa Cruz.
MobiCom 2001 is being planned for Europe.
XI. Listing of Computer and other equipment purchases