It is a privilege and a pleasure to welcome you to this, the seventh avataar of COMSNETS and to Bangalore. One of us (DM) grew up around here and has family and roots in this neighborhood; that it makes this job all the more special.
COMSNETS has grown up to be an important stop in the networking conference calendar and we hope you will find this to be the case in this version too. As every year, we have a virtual cornucopia of events to make this edition a memorable one. We have three excellent keynote speakers in Adrian Perrig, Sascha Meinrath and Venkat Padmanabhan. They are each pushing the boundaries of networking and we look forward to hearing from them and their interaction with us. Of course, we are grateful to them for having spending time with us. The technical program committee with Koushik Kar, Sumit Roy, and Dah Ming Chiu at the helm has taken special care to obtain thorough reviews and they have ensured a high quality technical program comparable to the best in the business. We are indeed very grateful to them for pulling off this feat. The technical program is also enhanced by a set of invited papers from distinguished researchers. We are also grateful to those that accepted and agreed to spare their valuable time with us. Kiran Kuchi, Pan Hui, and Supratik Mukhopdhyay kicked off the process by publicizing the conference which in turn ensured high quality submissions. Vishnu Navda has ensured that the authors deliver and the conference proceedings meets the IEEE requirements. The main technical program is augmented by an excellent poster session that has been shepherded by Vijay Gabale. Thanks to all of them.
The workshops preceding and succeeding the technical program have become an important feature of COMSNETS. They help us identify emerging research areas; we have five of them this year---one each on transport, agriculture, healthcare, security, and social networks. Each of these workshops promises to be vigorous and stimulating. All credit for this to the corresponding chairs Krishna Jagannathan and Gaurav Raina (Intelligent Transport Systems), Prashant Pillai and Huzur Saran (Future Information Security), Supratik Mukhopadhyay and P Krishna Reddy (Agrinets), Niloy Ganguly and Sitabra Sinha (Social Networking), and Sanjiva Prasad and Zainul Charbiwala (NetHealth).
Mobile India has been a feature of COMSNETS for a while now and is probably the most stable and active forum for interaction between academics, policy makers and industry in India. V Sridhar, as is his wont, has put together yet another excellent program with four panel discussions that is sure to give us food for thought for a while.
The industry has recognized the importance of COMSNETS to the networking community and has been traditionally generous with their purse. Platinum sponsorship from Cisco is deeply appreciated. It did boost our morale. Silver sponsorships from Microsoft and Google and bronze from NetApp, Xerox, Qualcomm, Bosch, Airtel, INSAIT, Mahindra Comviva, Sasken, HP Networkin, Airtight for WiFi at the venue, Yourstory for media coverage and Carrot with their Mobile App have helped raise the profile. Our thanks to each of them. The sponsors were ably pursued by Rajeev Shorey and Sudipta Maitra. They have been instrumental in ensuring the financial health of COMSNETS over the years. (What would COMSNETS do without you?) The generosity of our sponsors has also translated into a large number of travel grants for emerging researchers from India and abroad to participate in the conference and also for the PhD students to get together in the PhD Forum. Thanks to Sushanta Das (travel) and Swades De (PhD Forum) for ably managing these two important features of COMSNETS. Industry participation, especially the startups, in the Demos and Exhibits has also seen a steady increase over the years. Thanks to Vijay Gabale, Saharsh Tibrewal and Laxman Shankar, the trend continues this year and this platform promises to provide an excellent view of the things to come.
The website has been ably and efficiently managed by Ananda Krishna. This has helped provide an excellent presence for COMSNETS on the web. His turnaround times on our requests have been lightning fast. Thanks Ananda!
And now for something special. The Mars orbiter from ISRO did catch the imagination of so many that even the New York Times had to give it quite bit of attention. Shri Kiran Kumar, Director of Space Applications Centre in Ahmedabad has kindly agreed to provide us with a "birds eye view" of the Mars Mission that he oversees. Our gratitude to him for providing this privilege is immense.
Finally, a special gratitude to the 'steadies' of COMSNETS. Tulika Pandey has been a fantastic interface with the Government of India. Chandrika Sridhar has provided solid support with registrations and correspondence with the authors. Sudipta Maitra is ensuring the smooth conduct by managing the local arrangements. Giridhar Mandyam on the conference calls has been invaluable. Lastly, Rajeev Shorey deserves a special mention and a special paragraph. But we will spare our efforts and save it for the celebrations after the conference. His constant reminders and regular pokes and nudges helped the COMSNETS ship keep a steady course and, if we may mix metaphors, help us keep our eye on the ball.
Enjoy COMSNETS. We will.
UC Davis, USA
IIT Bombay, India