The selections for XTech are now almost complete. Over the weekend I drafted the schedule, which is under review right now by the programme committee.
Every year I say how hard a job this is because of the high standard of the submissions, and every year it seems to get harder. This year I found it almost heartbreaking to have to exclude some talks.
To illustrate, here are some statistics about the proposals and their selection. We received 177 submissions. Each of these abstracts were peer reviewed by at least 4 or 5 reviewers, from a panel of nearly 90 reviewers. From the graded results I shortlisted 105 proposals.
From that 105 I have had to fill 68 schedule slots, which meant about a third of the shortlisted proposals had to be excluded. Almost every single one of these would have been a great talk. They were so good, in fact, that I'm working on some ideas for adding to the schedule.
Notifications to accepted speakers will be sent at the beginning of next week. Rejection notices will follow a little while later. We don't want to send these out until we're sure we've done everything we can to accommodate as many quality presentations as possible.
I am enormously grateful to everyone who submitted a proposal. I can't wait to get the acceptance notices sent out so we can publish the schedule.
I can however reveal some early news about pre-conference tutorials. We'll have day-long tutorials on: Ruby on Rails; XSLT 2.0, XPath 2.0 & XQuery; and a Web 2.0 tech bootcamp. Also there'll be half-day tutorials on microformats, and XForms & XHTML 2.0.