Earlier this week, Zhenyi and I submitted a paper on the work we’ve been iterating over the past few months. I think we were successful in writing something significantly more polished than our first iteration of the paper, which, I believe, needed more time to be developed into something more focused and concise. Based on feedback, it was clear that the core part to improve was the story.
What is our mission, what is our contribution, and how do we tell the history of previous work that all comes to the moment at which we present our work? These all need to be completely clear, set into the framework of the paper. Our initial paper had a lot of ideas that could have been simplified and sewn together more nicely.
Rather than edit the original paper, we decided to write a completely new one, only taking bits and pieces from the original when those pieces were citations or already well-thought-out descriptions of some API or system that was relevant. This way we could focus on the flow of the paper. We picked one or two core ideas and discarded the rest for this paper. We also completely rewrote the user-study section to include a stream of quotations and feedback from the user-study, again, to create more of a story.
Zhenyi and I tried a somewhat unorthodox writing process, where we wrote large (corresponding) sections of the paper independently (based on our own knowledge of the project) so we could later merge all of the best descriptions and ideas. I think that the saying we used was “two minds are better than one.” In retrospect, this process helped us identify inconsistencies in our understand of the project and come-up with something more coherent.
I’ll also mention that Pasan Dharmasena lent us his time and energy to design some colorful graphics for our paper’s figures so readers could better visualize our ideas this time. Thank you again!
Of course, we had more time for this paper, and we had more content to show, so overall, I think that the paper had much more substance than our previous one. I am happy with the result!