12th European Conference on Object-Oriented Programming
Welcome to ECOOP'98
The conference is hosted by the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (supported by the Association Internationale pour les Technologies Objets) and will run from July 20 to July 24. As was the case with previous editions of ECOOP, a number of tutorials and workshops have been planned for the first two days, while a mixture of technical presentations, panel discussions and keynote speeches will take up the balance of the conference. In parallel there will also be an exhibitor's programme allowing object-oriented products and techniques to be displayed and demonstrated. In addition, the 8th International Symposium on System Configuration Management (SCM-8) will take place in cooperation with ECOOP on July 20 and 21.
The technical programme has been assembled these past months through the hard work of the program committee. The result is a rigorous selection from the best that the object-oriented research community has to offer. The conference itself is made possible by the unrelenting efforts of the organizing committee, assisted by volunteers from several Belgian and Dutch universities and the kind contributions of sponsoring organizations.
Although the conference will take place on the university's campus, participants will be lodged in downtown Brussels and extensively briefed on the availability of restaurants, cafés and related amenities. This should result in ample opportunity for informal contacts, an historical must with ECOOP. The social programme will give the participants an opportunity to get acquainted with Belgian culture, more so because the 21st of July is the Belgian national holiday. This will actually be the first ECOOP featuring fireworks!
The Vrije Universiteit Brussel is a full-fledged -albeit young- academic institution that has steadily been growing since its inception. Ours is a university of free-thinkers, dedicated to the pursuit of knowledge; the principle of unfettered and critical inquiry is reflected in both research and teaching. Our university offers a wide range of excellent academic and post-academic programmes and is known for its international orientation: many classes are taught -in English- to students with a rich spread of nationalities. Other than in teaching, the Vrije Universiteit Brussel is involved in a large variety of significant research topics, many of them in an international context.
The Vrije Universiteit Brussel is very active in all areas of information technology, again from both a research and teaching perspective. Our university attaches great importance to the elaboration of an advanced technological communication infrastructure on its campus, accessible to both students and faculty. Network access from student dormitories is being finalised, so that student may freely use Internet from their rooms.
Needless to say that computing in general becomes more and more important in our community. During the last decade -driven by technological advances- software has evolved enormously, to the extent that it has become virtually impossible to write it from scratch. Software must be considered independently from technology and the need for integration has forced computer science to adopt solid engineering techniques. This led to fundamentally new concepts in information technology based on an object-oriented approach in order to battle complexity of software systems. Since the early days Belgian universities have picked up this thread as a research topic and several groups have earned international recognition. I am proud to be a member of the university hosting one of those research groups prominent in this exciting new field.
I sincerely hope that this will be an interesting and fruitful conference and that you may come away from it with many new and stimulating ideas. I also hope that you will have an enjoyable stay in our city of Brussels and that you will take the time to visit the downtown area. I am sure that you will appreciate our superb Grand-Place and -weather permitting- have a Belgian beer on a terrace fronting one of its many cafˇ's. Little surpasses wandering through the Rue des Bouchers on a warm summer's eve, shopping for dinner in one of the restaurants that specialise in putting up wonderful spreads of fish an crustaceans. You can also stroll along the many antique shops on the Sablon or visit the Royal palaces, the many parks or even the remnants of the '58 world exposition-featuring the world-famous atomium. Please take time to sample the cultural side of Brussels with its broad variety of museums and do not forget to stop and look at the unique Art Nouveau architectural masterpieces.
Both the conference and the city have more than enough assets to make your visit a memorable one!
P.W. De Wilde
Vrije Universiteit Brussel