I decided to make a somewhat ad hoc list of conferences in the general scope of algorithms and theory (i.e topics in this conference will often show up in STOC/FOCS/SODA), and look at their submission deadlines (a man's got to do something while waiting for his sausage...). The resulting timeline is reproduced below; the blue bar indicates the span of time from submission to result announcement, and the red dot indicates the actual date of the conference.
It is not surprising to see how academic schedules appear to influence conference scheduling (travelling in the summer is so much easier), but I did expect to see a slightly more equitable distribution of deadlines over the year. Indeed, February is the cruelest month.
Notes and caveats:
- I used the most recent conference dates; there are variations from year to year, but not significant ones.
- WADS and SWAT are really the same conference, but alternate.
- RANDOM and APPROX operate together
- I wonder why ISAAC and FSTTCS, which are both Asian theory conferences, schedule themselves to collide that way.
- As some pointed out, these are not conflicts per se; the number of people submitting to (say) COLT and CPM at the same time is probably small. I was more intrigued by the density of deadlines in the early part of the year.