Documenting experiences is an important aspect of creating enduring value from lessons learned. As a practitioner conference, SATURN has been focused on presentations and interactive learning without any paper proceedings. However, as our audience expanded and the discipline of software and system architecture matured, capturing some of the lessons discussed for posterity and later reference became a frequently repeated request.
The IEEE Software and SATURN collaboration created the perfect opportunity both to keep the structure of the conference as it is and to document some of the lessons learned for years to come. IEEE Software has a strong emphasis on all facets of software development, aiming to feature leading-edge techniques for transitioning theory to practice. In addition, the magazine has a rigorous and established peer-review process leading to high-quality publications.
In January/February 2011 issue of IEEE Software, you will find four articles that come out of SATURN 2010 program. The two outstanding award presentations led to publications, so Tony Tsakiris’ report on experiences at Ford can be found in the Insights department, and Olaf Zimmermann’s results from work at IBM Zurich are described in a technical article. In addition, the same issue will include a second Insights piece from Arthur Wright about his experiences of evolving existing systems to changing business needs at Credit Suisse and an additional technical article by Grace Lewis from the SEI on engineering lessons learned from service-oriented systems.
But how did we go about selecting the presentations to lead to these articles, and what kind of a process do the articles go through?
In 2010, for the first time we introduced an attendee-voting process for all the presentations. The votes of the attendees were the sole criterion in presenting the two outstanding presentation awards to Tony Tsakiris and Olaf Zimmermann. We also established a technical committee. Philippe Kruchten, Frances Paulisch, and Linda Rising from IEEE Software and Nanette Brown, myself, Robert Nord, and Robert Wojcik from the SEI architecture-centric engineering group were the members for SATURN 2010. Members of the technical committee attended all the presentations. Immediately after the conference, we discussed all the presentations, factored in attendee feedback, and invited six presenters to submit papers for consideration for publication in IEEE Software. The criteria used in addition were relevance to the IEEE Software audience, relevance to architecture practice, and content presented.
The authors of the selected presentations took about six weeks to write their articles. All submitted articles went through peer review by at least three reviewers. The authors of the four selected papers then revised their papers based on the reviewer comments. In some cases, the papers were re-reviewed to ensure fitness to the sections within which they would be published. Once the selections were finalized, the papers went through the typical editing process of IEEE Software. We will all read the resulting articles in January 2011.
We are all excited that we will repeat the same process for SATURN 2011. Presenters whose presentations are selected based on attendee and technical-committee feedback will have the opportunity to receive mentoring and feedback from the experienced editorial staff and reviewers of IEEE Software for publication in a future issue of the magazine.
– Ipek Ozkaya, SEI