Suresh points out we have some strange new SODA submission rules this year:
Full submissions should begin with the title of the paper, each author's name, affiliation, and e-mail address, followed by a succinct statement of the problems considered, the main results, an explanation of their significance, and a comparison to past research, all of which should be easily understood by non-specialists. More technical developments follow as appropriate. Use 11-point or larger font in single column format, with one-inch or wider margins all around. The submission, excluding title page and bibliography, must not exceed 10 pages (authors should feel free to send submissions that are significantly shorter than 10 pages.) If 10 pages are insufficient to include a full proof of the results, then a complete full version of the paper (reiterating the material in the 10-page abstract) must be appended to the submission after the bibliography. The length of the appended paper is not limited, and it will be read at the discretion of the committee. A detailed proof in the appended complete version is not a substitute for establishing the main ideas of the validity of the result within the 10-page abstract.
This is totally bizarre. 11-point single column-format? Then an appended paper beyond the abstract?
I wish I was submitting a paper on my own. I'd just submit a standard opening abstract and my "10-page paper" would be, "Hey, I've just told you what I'm going to prove, why don't you go read my real paper, which is attached to this?" Because, really, I'm not clear on what the point of all this is.
Having recently finished an ICALP paper and having worked today on an ESA paper, I didn't think it was possible to choose a worse format that 10 or 12 pages in LNCS format, which gives you just enough space to say, "Here, I've done something interesting, but if you want any details, go read it on the arXiv." And I suppose this isn't really worse. [Really, can't we all just protest the bizarre LNCS format? Or fine, keep the format, but paper limits should be 20 pages.] It's just strange.
Most other conference I'm involved with outside of theory have the sensible approach that you submit something that looks pretty much like what your final paper is supposed to look like. You may only have a 5 page limit (double column, 10 point font, which I think is still well over 12 pages in LNCS format), but the reviewers sees what the paper will be. Some conference even give a page or two extra for the final version, so you can actually address reviewer comments. (Of course, those conferences also make a point of giving detailed reviewer comments, in some cases even having shepherds for the final papers.)
Theory conferences are messed up with this whole page limit/paper format thing. Someone should figure out a simpler, more coherent system. It seems like it would be hard to come up a system that was any more random and arbitrary.