Welcome to the first issue of Exchanges, the official newsletter of the ACM special interest group on e-commerce. Our primary goal is to create a forum for researchers in the various disciplines that comprise e-commerce to communicate about research issues and opportunities. We intend to publish high quality technical articles and conference reports and I believe that the four feature articles in this inaugural issue are an excellent start. The articles are interesting not only for their content, but also for the breadth of topics and geography which they reflect. We have one article in experimental economics, one survey of wireless protocols, one proposal for programmatic extensions to XML, and one discussion of the issues of ontology integration. Geographically, two articles are from the US, one from Turkey, and one from Singapore. It is this multidisciplinary and global nature that makes e-commerce an exciting and challenging topic in which to do research.
Although the technical articles are our bread and butter, we also plan a complementary set of dynamic content, including a working paper archive, and frequently updated sections covering industry news, publishing opportunities, e-commerce education, and jobs postings. We have put in links for all of the features we plan---even when the content is sparse or non-existent---to give you an idea of where we are going. To successfully implement and grow this site, we need more than the small staff we have now. We need your help. If you think the research community can benefit from this forum and would like to see it blossom, you can directly affect the outcome by contributing articles or volunteering to develop and maintain one of the unimplemented features.
Given that our focus is e-commerce, it is fitting that we use technology to implement the newsletter. We intend the newsletter to be primarily electronic, and have yet to decide whether archival hard copy will be published. We would like to hear your opinion on the subject. In fact, we would like to hear your opinion about all of the issues related to the site, whether they be comments about the features or about the articles.
Finally, we would like to thank the people who helped make this newsletter possible. At the top of the list is Stu Feldman, who in addition to creating the SIG, coerced me into being the editor of the newsletter. Mike Wellman provided valuable advice during this first publishing cycle. Rachael Barish at ACM, helps manage the SIG and was my liaison to the parent organization. And of course, we would like to thank the authors, all of whom took a leap-of-faith by submitted articles to this inaugural issue.
We are excited about the newsletter and look forward to working with you to make the entire site a valuable resource for the e-commerce research community.
Peter R. Wurman, Editor-in-Chief