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Simson Garfinkel

A View from Simson Garfinkel

Two Very Funny Fake Papers

About once a month I get an invitation by email to submit to conferences like the World Multi_Conference on Systemics, Cybernetics and Informatics.Well, I’m not the only person who has been getting them. Jeremy Stribling (a grad student at MIT)…

  • April 11, 2005

About once a month I get an invitation by email to submit to conferences like the World Multi_Conference on Systemics, Cybernetics and Informatics.

Well, I’m not the only person who has been getting them. Jeremy Stribling (a grad student at MIT) was so sick of getting these invitations to submit that he wrote a fake research paper generator (using statistical models), he submitted the program’s results to the conference, and it was accepted!

No kidding!

The papers are very clever—far more clever than I could have possibly written.

The steve paper has really weird graphs in it. Complexity measured in Joules. Bandwidth measured in # of nodes. (And fractional nodes, down to 0.1.) Hit ratio measured in teraflops.

The rooter paper has similar weird stuff.

This happened a few years ago at the Modern Language Association, where a hack paper was submitted with so much pseudo-intellectual rubbish in it that the conference committees let it through. They just didn’t know what they were up against.

But this is the first time that I’ve heard of a randomly-generated paper getting accepted at a conference.

I’d love to see the code to the generator. Now that would be an interesting paper.

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