Cipher Issue 84, May 2008, Editor's Letter

The Security and Privacy Symposium was held May 18-21, as usual at the Claremont Hotel in Berkeley/Oakland, California. This was a great meeting in terms of the variety of papers and number of attendees. The Program Chairs, Patrick McDaniel and Avi Rubin, put together a program to please any technical palate, be it applications or theory, and the General Chair, Yong Guan, assisted by David Du and David Shambroom, drew in unprecedented corporate and government sponsorship that helped make it an affordable and high quality event for a near-record crowd.

In fact, the SP attendees were packed in rather tightly in the refurbished Claremont Ballroom. If next year sees a further increase in attendance numbers, the organizers will have to go to extraordinary means to cope. That will either using a video link to accommodate some attendees in an extra meeting room, or else they will be limiting registration on a first-come-first-served basis. If this is deja vu to you, you've earned the moniker of "old-timer".

Matt Fredrikson's fine report on the Monday and Tuesday talks at the Symposium gives the highlights of the presentations and audience questions.

Next year will be the 30th anniversary of the conference, and the Technical Committee hopes to put together a special event to celebrate the remarkable history of the event.

This month's Cipher has three book reviews, two of them straying a bit from our central topic of computer security. Knuth's peek at Volume 4 in a "fascicle" was too tempting to pass up, and Richard Austin has reviewed a book about extreme probabilities. He also reviewed a traditional information security book.

All your datum are belong to us,
    Hilarie Orman
    Cipher Editor