Damn it. Of course my paper for DAC was a thesis chapter, or a version of one, and yes, it is actually the first time I’ve gone from thesis to paper rather than the other way. And yes, I did have zillions of references. So I’m convinced (possibly wrongly) that this is aimed at me, in the things to do differently next time list at the DAC conference blog:
I was actually using the ACM Hypertext conference papers as a model in my zealous (damnit, not over-zealous) referencing. There, my impression (from papers I’ve read and reviewers’ reports I’ve received) has been that it’s crucial to position yourself in relation to other work in the field and you do that by citing people, lots of people – especially previous papers from the same conference, because that helps build the community.
I suppose there are many ideas of what a conference paper should look like. And heck, I like seeing other peoples’ references. That’s where I find a lot of useful work that I’d be interested in.