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TUCS Newsletter 15.10.2012

Content of the newsletter


TUCS Distinguished Lecture Series

TUCS launched the new TUCS Distinguished Lecture Series on Monday, October 1st. The series is a forum for public lectures by outstanding national and international researchers in all aspects of computing, coming both from academia and industry. All lectures are free and open to the public.

The inaugural TUCS Distinguished Lecture was given by Yuri Matiyasevich on “Turing machines vs Diophantine machines”. The lecture raised huge interest: some 140 people turned out, many of them young PhD, master and even bachelor students. We even had some attendance from other fields, e.g., from humanities.

The series will continue this fall with two other exciting lectures:
9.11.2012 Esko Ukkonen (University of Helsinki, Finland) at 13.15. Title to be confirmed later. Lecture room Lambda (ICT-Building)
3.12.2012 Masakazu Ohashi (Chuo University, Japan) at 13.15, “Business and IT operations continuance in Japan after the 2011 earthquake”. Lecture room Lambda (ICT-Building)

Read more about the TUCS Distinguished Lecture Series


TUCS research programme activities

BioHealth guest talk: Vladimir Rogojin (University of Helsinki, Finland), October 12, 2012. Cancer-related studies in cellular signalling networks: identifying essential nodes via feedback loops.


TUCS Information meeting for the new students

The new PhD students at TUCS met on October 4 in the TUCS premises with the TUCS staff. They were given a short presentation of TUCS and of some of the practical issues concerning the PhD studies at TUCS, benefits and duties related to the Graduate Programme, travelling instructions, TUCS Publication Series.


Upcoming INFORTE.fi events

Turku 4.-5.12.2012
Speakers: Mayumi Hori (Hakuoh University), Masakazu Ohashi (Chuo University)
Organizer: Prof. Reima Suomi, University of Turku
Registrations and more information:


EIT ICT Labs Course: Opportunity recognition

OPPORTUNITY RECOGNITION (6 ects), innovation & entrepreneurship education event for PhD students

DATE: 25-30 November 2012
VENUE: 1st floor Seminar Hall at Open Innovation House, Otaniementie 19 B, Espoo, Finland
ORGANISER: EIT ICT Labs Doctoral Program in ICT Innovation, Helsinki.


The course is 6 ECTS in total, divided in the following workloads: pre-assignments on the Virtual learning platform (VLP) (2 ects), intensive course week (3 ects) and post-assignments on the VLP (1 ects). Virtual Learning Platform, Moodle is easily accessible for all participating universities. The VLP can be accessed online at: http://moodle.bidedu.fi/ The VLP is opened to registered students.

REGISTRATION DEADLINE Tuesday 20 November 2012:
Participation includes lectures, social program and serving described in the program.

The number of participants is limited to 40. Registration is binding. If cancelled without a medical certificate later than 20 November, 2012, a cancellation fee of 50 euros may be charged.

The event is available for DOCTORAL STUDENTS from Aalto University, University of Helsinki, University of Turku, Åbo Akademi, University of Oulu, University of Tampere and Tampere University of Technology. Also doctoral students from other EIT ICT Labs nodes and their partner universities can attend.

-Enhanced awareness and ability to exploit the potential of their research.
-Obtaining a holistic understanding about the business development process at early stage.
-Gaining the ability to explain the business functions in a new venture and in an existing company and their connections to the strategy.
-Gaining the ability to apply industry specific knowledge.
-Knowledge regarding the new product/service development stages and processes.-How to recognize business opportunities and exploit them.
-How to be able to evaluate the business opportunities in the field of high technology.
-How to be able to conduct a market assessment (including market demand, custome expectations, and customer value).
-To obtain the necessary pre-business planning skills (including IPR and business modeling).
-To show more entrepreneurial skills (presentation skills, negotiation skills, team work coordination).
-How to be able to differentiate and develop the knowledge and technology transfer systems in the academic and industrial setting (including open innovation and/or respective current paradigms).

For all inquiries, please contact Katri Sarkio (EIT ICT Labs Helsinki, Doctoral School Coordinator, katri.sarkio@eitictlabs.eu, tel. +358 50 5969022, Open Innovation House, Otaniementie 19 b, 02150 Espoo, PO Box 15600, 00076 Aalto)


EIT ICT Labs Course: PhD – an Entrepreneur?

PhD – an Entrepreneur? (2 ects) doctoral education
DATE: 1-2 and 13-15 November 2012
VENUE: EIT ICT Labs Doctoral Training Center Helsinki, Open Innovation House, 2nd floor, Otaniementie 19 B, Espoo, Finland
ORGANISER: EIT ICT Labs Doctoral School in ICT Innovation, Helsinki and Aalto University School of Business Small Business Center (SBC).
HOME PAGE: http://www.eitictlabs.eu/education/education-catalyst-and-co-funding-model/innovation-entreprenuership-education-for-doctoral-programs/doctoral-ie-education-in-helsinki/

REGISTRATION, DEADLINE October 19, 2012, via the following registration link: https://workspaces.ictlabs.eu/pro2/forms/register_step1.aspx?guid=84bc291b-109f-4732-bd99-4e9d25eaa8d7

The number of participants is limited to 20. Registration is binding. If cancelled without a medical certificate later than 25 October, 2012, a cancellation fee of 50 euros may be charged.

PROGRAM, please visit:
Day 1 Considerations on starting-up your own business, November 1, 2011, 9:30-16:30
Day 2 Leadership and strategic thinking in value creation, November 2, 2012, 9:00-16:00
Day 3 Sales and marketing skills, November 13, 2012, 9:30-16:30
Day 4 Key to business finance, November 14, 2012, 9:00-16:00
Day 5 Interaction is the key! And How to improve your time management , November 15, 2012, 9:00-16:00

Comprehension of the studies: 2 ects. Grading: pass/fail.

The event is available for DOCTORAL STUDENTS from Aalto University, University of Helsinki, University of Turku, Åbo Akademi, University of Oulu, University of Tampere and Tampere University of Technology. Also doctoral students from other EIT ICT Labs nodes and their partner universities can attend.

PhD – an Entrepreneur-study curriculum is a customized program for full-time graduate students. The objective of this training is to improve participants´ over-all information, knowledge and understanding of entrepreneurship and start-up-businesses. It helps participants analyze, what components and competencies are needed to conduct a business successfully.In addition to transferring knowledge and insights on modern theories of strategic thinking, the program also deals with other skills and competencies such as: how to manage sales in terms of reading, interpreting and analyzing financial reports, what are the modern methods in customer-oriented marketing (the role of social media e.g.), how to interact successfully with people of differing style, how to be persuasive, how to manage in time pressure. Trainers/Specialists are all entrepreneurs, and regular lecturers at Aalto University School of Business.

ACCOMMODATION (not included): please visit: http://www.eitictlabs.eu/ict-labs/nodes-co-location-centres/helsinki/hotel-and-directions/.

Aalto University, School of Economics, Small Business Center, Aira Davidsson, aira.davidsson@aalto.fi, +358 40 7568 717
EIT ICT Labs Doctoral School in ICT Innovation, Doctoral Training Center Helsinki, Katri Sarkio, katri.sarkio@eit.ictlabs.eu, +358 50 5969022


EIT ICT Labs Course: Entrepreneurial Boot Camp

Entrepreneurial Boot Camp (1 ects), doctoral education.
DATE: 3-4 December 2012
VENUE: EIT ICT Labs Doctoral Training Center Helsinki, Open Innovation House, 1st floor Demo Room, Otaniementie 19 B, Espoo, Finland
ORGANISER: EIT ICT Labs Doctoral School in ICT Innovation, Helsinki and Steven & Andrew Langdon, Langdons Ltd.
HOME PAGE: http://www.eitictlabs.eu/education/education-catalyst-and-co-funding-model/innovation-entreprenuership-education-for-doctoral-programs/doctoral-ie-education-in-helsinki/

PROGRAM (will be fine tuned on a basis of participants needs analysis):
DAY 1: MONDAY, 3 December 2012, 08:45-18:30
Entrepreneur - Critical success factors
Finding new customers / stakeholders
How to sell your ideas in meetings
Tools to build partnership and trust
Preparing for the Sales Meeting
Role of innovation & risk taking as an Entrepreneur
The right attitude as an Entrepreneur
7 myths about Selling
“Importance of patents and criteria for patenting - what you can patent and what you should patent”, Folke Johansson, Papula Nevinpat, Director (Patent Department), European Patent Attorney
Special program, ends around 18:30

DAY 2: TUESDAY, 4 December 2012, 08:45-16:00
Selling your ideas on paper - how to get interest.
Motivating stakeholders
How to sell yourself in a job interview
Tailoring the message
Building & maintaining partnerships
Motivating suppliers
First phone calls to new customers and interest groups.

Comprehension of the studies: 1 ects. Grading: pass/fail.

REGISTRATION by November 22, 2012 via following link:
The number of participants is limited to 26. Registration is binding. If cancelled without a medical certificate later than November 23, a cancellation fee of 50 EUR may be charged.

i) Entrepreneurial Needs analysis completed prior to training. Send it to helpme@langdons.com
ii) Participants are also asked to complete the Langdons Sales Challenge on the internet.
iii) Before the training each participant submits an e-mail where they have to get interest in their ideas to some stakeholder from their entrepreneurial business. This might be a partner / prospective funder / supplier / or potential customer. Imagine in real life you ring a new or existing Customer or stakeholder and they say to you "Thanks for ringing - please could you send me an e mail which outlines the main points of your business idea or offer?" What would you write in the e-mail? The answer to that question is your pre work for this seminar. So if you could kindly e-mail an example of your reply to this customer. At the top of the email you could indicate to us who the customer was. Example "I rang up Research Company X spoke to Manager Y and he asked for the e mail which reads as follows:

After training Entrepreneurial free Help Line is available to participants.

The event is available for DOCTORAL STUDENTS from Aalto University, University of Helsinki, University of Turku, Åbo Akademi, University of Oulu, University of Tampere and Tampere University of Technology. Also doctoral students from other EIT ICT Labs nodes and their partner universities can attend.

ACCOMMODATION (not included): please visit: http://www.eitictlabs.eu/ict-labs/nodes-co-location-centres/helsinki/hotel-and-directions/.

MORE INFORMATION: Langdons Ltd., Andy Langdon +358 40 586 86 88, Steve Langdon +358 40 586 8687 and EIT ICT Labs Doctoral School in ICT Innovation, Doctoral Training Center Helsinki, Katri Sarkio, katri.sarkio@eitictlabs.eu, +358 50 5969022


Courses on transferable skills at University of Turku

Continuous seminars & courses

First Article Language Checking Service
Time: 1.3.-31.12.2012- nb! summer break 15.6.-15.8.2012
Target group: PhD students at the University of Turku working on their first article for publication (in English)
Organizers: The University of Turku Language Centre and UTUGS

Life after PhD - Seminars in the Fall 2012
Time & Place:
05.11.2012 at 14:00 - 16:00, Researchers` mobility, Lecture Hall II, University Main Building
11.12.2012 at 14:00 - 16:00, Akateeminen kulttuuri (in Finnish), Tauno Nurmela lecture hall, University Main Building
Target group: PhD students, supervisors, other researchers and those interested in the topic
Further information: eeva.sievi(at)utu.fi
Organizer: UTUGS

Tieteen popularisointi – näin kerron tutkimuksestani (1 op)
Tohtorikoulutettava kirjoittaa väitöskirjatutkimuksestaan lyhyen (max. 4500 merkkiä) ja yleistajuisen jutun, luetuttaa tekstin ensin ohjaajallaan ja jatkaa tekstin työstämistä Suomen Akatemian tiedottajan Risto Alatarvaan kanssa. Valmis juttu julkaistaan Suomen Akatemian Tietysti.fi-sivustolla.
Järjestäjä: UTUGS ja Suomen Akatemia
Lisätietoja: Eeva Sievi (eeva.sievi-at-utu.fi, 040-1612970) ja Risto Alatarvas (risto.alatarvas-at-aka.fi, 040-828 0648)

"Suomen kielen klinikka" for international students and staff
Target group: all non-Finnish speakers at the university who already are at the level of being able to express themselves in written and oral Finnish (=B to C-level)
Further information: Markku Nikulin (marnik-at-utu.fi)
Organizer: suomen kielen oppiaine


Ethics of Academic Research (2 ECTS)
Time: Monday 29.10.2012 at 10.15-11.45 & Mondays from 5.11. to 10.12. at 9.15-11.45
Place: Pub 2 (Publicum, Assistentinkatu 7)
Responsible teacher: Dr. Helena Siipi
Registration: by 17.10.2012 via eRegistration
Organizer: UTUGS


Tiedeviestintä (2 op)
Aika: 1.11.-4.12.2012 (ks. kurssiohjelma)
Paikka: Turun yliopisto
Vastuuopettajat: prof. Marianne Liljeström ja prof. Marjut Johansson
Ilmoittautuminen: 22.10.2012 mennessä www-ilmoittautumislomakkeella (max. 20 osallistujaa)
Järjestäjät: Humanistisen tiedekunnan tohtoriohjelmat Juno ja Utuling

Aika & paikka:
*1. tapaaminen: pe 2.11.2012 klo 9.15-12.00, Porthan-sali/Maaherran makasiini)
*2. tapaaminen: pe 9.11.2012 klo 9.15-12.00, Porthan-sali/Maaherran makasiini)
*3. tapaaminen: to 22.11.2012 klo 9.15-12.00, Rekryn auditorio
*4. tapaaminen: to 29.11.2012 klo 9.15-12.00, Rekryn auditorio
Kohderyhmä: tohtorintutkintonsa loppuvaiheessa olevat Turun yliopiston tohtorikoulutettavat
Ilmoittautuminen: 18.10.2012 mennessä www-hakulomakkeella - huom! max. 6 osallistujaa (www-hakulomakkeeseen kirjatut perustelut osallistumismotivaatiosta keskeisessä roolissa osallistujia valittaessa)
Järjestäjät: Rekry & UTUGS

Philosophical, Methodological and Pragmatic Approaches to Scientific Futures Research (3 ECTS)
Time: Nov 28 – 30, 2012
Place: seminar room E323 in Minerva-building of Sirkkala campus (3. floor, Kaivokatu 12), University of Turku
Registration: before Oct 30 2012 via eRegistration
Further information: Sari Söderlund (sari.soderlund-at-utu.fi)
Organizer: Finland Futures Academy (FFA)


Courses on transferable skills at Åbo Akademi University

SÖK I NELLI - portalen för databaser, e-tidskrifter och e-resurser, 2h
Tidpunkt: Alt 1. 25.9.2012 kl. 10.15-12
Alt 2. 23.10.2012 kl. 13.00-15 (In English)
Alt 3. 20.11.2012 kl. 10.15-12

Introduktion till referenshanteringsprogrammet RefWorks och hur man använder Write-N-Cite då man skriver texter i Microsoft Word. Vi lär oss att importera referenser till vår egen referensdatabas, skapar mappar och editerar referenser. Vi övar oss i att göra en referenslista och hur man kan jobba offline (utan Internet) med programmet.
Tidpunkt: Alt 1. 2.10.2012 kl. 10.15-12
Alt 2. 30.10.2012 kl. 10.15-12 (In English)
Alt 3. 27.11.2012 kl. 10.15-12

Följande kurser i Åbo är öppna och gratis för alla FORSKARSTUDERANDE vid ÅA:

För närmare information, se kurskatalogen:
Anmälningar: http://www.abo.fi/personal/anmalan

* Effective presentations in English, 5 & 19.10, at 9.00-16, Åbo
* Informationskompetens: Forskarens verktygslåda & Nelli-portalen,16.10 kl. 10-12, Åbo
* KRAFT, FLYT & INSPIRATION för dig som jobbar inom forskning och/eller undervisning, 19.10, kl. 10-12, Åbo
* Forskarskolan: Årsseminarium för nya doktorander, 24.10 kl.13.00-15, videokonferens Åbo-Vasa
* Informationssökning i Nelli-portalen, 20.11 kl. 10-12, Åbo
* Webbinarium: Doktoranduppföljning, 26.11, 12.30-13, Adobe Connect*
* Hantera citat och referenser med RefWorks, 27.11 kl. 10-12, Åbo

* Handledningsgruppen och –processen, 2.11 kl. 10.00-12, Åbo
* Handledarutbildning: Slutseminarium, 26.11 kl. 13-17, Åbo-Vasa

* Moodle: Forts.kurs - layout, feedback och grupparbete, 15.10 kl. 8.30-11, Åbo
* Moodle: Forts. kurs - skapa övningsuppgifter, 17.10 kl. 8.30-11, Åbo
* Moodle: Grundkurs, 25.10 kl. 12.30-15.30, Åbo
* Hankens höstkonferens om utveckling av undervisningen, 26.10, Åbo + Adobe Connect*
* Rösten som arbetsredskap, 12.11 kl. 15-17, Åbo
* Genomströmningsseminarium: Smidig studiegång och snabb utexaminering – genomströmningsideal? 13.11 kl. 9.30-12, Åbo + Adobe Connect
* Adobe Connect för möten och handledning på distans 15.11 kl. 13.00-15, Adobe Connect
* Informationssökning i Nelli-portalen, 20.11 kl. 10-12, Åbo
* Hantera citat och referenser med RefWorks, 27.11 kl. 10-12, Åbo
* Rösten som arbetsredskap, 27.11 kl. 13-15, Åbo
* Bytestorg för Moodle-idéer, 30.11 kl. 9.00-12, Åbo + Adobe Connect
* MinPlan-nyheter: Skapa och revidera kurser enklare än förr! 3.12 kl. 13-15, videokonferens Åbo-Vasa
(* Adobe Connect betyder att du kan delta i kursen från din egen dator)

The following courses are open and free for all doctoral students at Åbo Akademi University:

Course information: http://www.abo.fi/personal/kurskatalog
Registration: http://www.abo.fi/personal/en/anmalan

* Effective presentations in English, 5 & 19.10, at 9.00-16, Åbo
* Information retrieval in the Nelli-database, 23.10 at 13.00-15, Åbo
* Adobe Connect for meetings and tutoring online, 24.10 at 10-12, Adobe Connect
* Graduate school: Annual seminar for new PhD students, 24.10 at 13.00-15, video conference Åbo-Vasa
* Information literary: Gathering and editing references with RefWorks, 30.10 at 10-12, Åbo


The latest issue of Academy of Finland’s magazine Apropos (in Finnish)



Open jobs at University of Turku and Åbo Akademi University

University of Turku: http://www.utu.fi/ajankohtaista/avoimet/
Åbo Akademi University: https://www.abo.fi/personal/rekrytering


TUCS GP travel reports

TUCS GP travel report: DAIS 2012 by Fredrik Degerlund

Full name of the event: 12th IFIP International Conference on Distributed Applications and Interoperable Systems (DAIS 2012)
Place and date: Stockholm, Sweden, June 14th–15th 2012
Type of event: Conference

My article:

The scientific profile of the event: DAIS has quite a broad profile covering many (or most) aspects a distributed computing. According to the DAIS web site (http://lucan.sics.se/discotec/?q=dais), it “addresses all aspects of distributed applications, including their architecture, design, implementation and operation, the supporting middleware, appropriate software engineering methodologies and tools, as well as experimental studies and practice reports”. It was part of the DisCoTec 2012 federated conference, which, in addition to DAIS, also accommodated the COORDINATION as well as FMOODS/FORTE conferences.

Opinion on the best paper and its topic: Designating a “winner” is very difficult. However, I would like to mention a presentation given during the industrial session (which was shared between all three DisCoTec conferences). The talk, “Spotify - Behind the Scenes”, given by Gunnar Kreitz, presented statistic and details about the inner workings of the Spotify music streaming service. It gives a hint of what can, in practice, be achieved through current knowledge (though, obviously, it did not actually propose new theoretical contributions).

Number of participants: There were around 120 participants for the whole of DisCoTec. I have no specific number for DAIS, but I would guess around a third of the total DisCoTec number, or somewhat less than that.

Social events: On 14 June, we went to the small archipelago town of Vaxholm. The trip took place by boat (M/S Sjöbris), and we had dinner on board. We had time for a short walk at Vaxholm before boarding the boat again and returning to Stockholm.

Touristic impressions: Stockholm consists of several islands interconnected into a city. If you like cities as well as islands and water, you should definitely consider visiting Stockholm. If you want to visit the archipelago, you can take a boat trip e.g. to Vaxholm (as we did during the social event). Or, if you prefer a city-on-water feeling in the city centre, just take a stroll along Norr Mälarstrand (as I`ve done when previously visiting Stockholm). Of course, you can also enjoy culture e.g. by visiting museums. Getting around in the central parts of Stockholm (as well as a number of suburbs) is convenient by underground (“tunnelbanan”).

TUCS GP travel report: CiE 2012 by Charalampos Zinoviadis

From 19th to 23rd of June, I attended the conference CiE 2012 (Computer science in Europe) in Cambridge, England. The conference was dedicated to the centenary of the birth of Alan Turing, one of the fathers of computer science, and thus had a particularly celebrating tone. Naturally, the invited talks were all connected to his work. Of course, I was glad to attend the conference, and I was even more glad because I would have the opportunity to present there my first reviewed paper.

The title of the paper was Densities and Entropies of Cellular Automata, and it was a joint work with DR. Pierre Guillon, who is currently working in the University of Marseille, France. The work was, however, done during Pierre`s stay here as a post-doc student.

The range of topics of the conference is really broad. Almost every area of Theoretical Computer Science was represented with papers of high quality. The organizers try to make CiE a very broad conference that will join together computer scientists coming from the most disparate areas. Of course, it was physically impossible to attend all of the lectures, sometimes there were even 7 lectures at the same time, but I tried to attend all of those that are close to my research interests. This included lectures on cellular automata, dynamical properties of Turing machines and Kolmogorov complexity. The most interesting, and surprising talk, was a public lecture given by Ian Stewart on some, previously not known to me, work of Alan Turing in chemistry and the formation of patterns on the skin of living organisms.

The number of participants in the conference was above 400 people. According to the organizers, it was more than double than in all the previous CiE conferences. I preferred not to participate in the dinner of the conference because the price was prohibitory for the budget of my trip (more than 40 pounds). We visited the British Natural History Museum one day and had an aperitif and a snack there, while admiring the skeletons and fossils.

TUCS GP travel report: SERENE 2012 by Yuliya Prokhorova

Full name of the event: The 4th International Workshop on Software Engineering for Resilient Systems (SERENE 2012)
Place and date: Pisa, Italy, September 25th–28th 2012
Type of event: Autumn school and workshop

My article:

The scientific profile of the event: The SERENE 2012 workshop gathers researchers and practitioners in the area of development, verification and validation of resilient systems (systems that are able to persistently deliver their services in a trustworthy way even when facing changes). The workshop fosters discussion and cooperation between the growing resilience research community.

The autumn school and workshop topics were as follows: formal and semi-formal techniques, requirements engineering and re-engineering for resilience, verification and validation of resilient systems, resilience prediction and experimental measurement, error, fault and exception handling in the software life-cycle, empirical studies in the domain of resilient systems, relations between resilience and other system quality attributes, frameworks, patterns and software architectures for resilience, resilience at run-time: metadata, mechanisms, reasoning and adaptation, engineering of self-healing autonomic systems, quantitative approaches to ensuring resilience, CASE tools for developing resilient systems.

Opinion on the best paper and its topic: In my opinion, the best presentation at the workshop was “Fault-Tolerant Interactive Cockpits for Critical Applications: Overall Approach” based on a paper written by C. Fayollas et al. This presentation proposed an approach to assessment of dependability of interactive cockpits. This approach was exemplified by an interactive control and display system of the Airbus A380. However, the rest of presentations were interesting as well.

Number of participants: approximately 35

Social events: The workshop dinner in a local restaurant

Touristic impressions: The autumn school and workshop program was quite full. Nevertheless, we still had enough time to enjoy the beauty of one of the most famous places in the world - the Piazza dei Miracoli (Cathedral Square) and the Leaning Tower.

TUCS GP travel report: NAACL 2012/BioNLP 2012 Workshop by Jari Björne

Full name of the event: The 2012 Conference of the North American Chapter of the Association for Computational Linguistics (NAACL 2012) / Biomedical Natural Language Processing workshop – BioNLP 2012
Place and date: Montreal, Canada, June 3rd–8th 2012
Type of event: conference/workshop

My article:

The scientific profile of the event: The NAACL conference is the North American version of the largest yearly computational linguistics conference, ACL, named after the Association for Computational Linguistics. It covers the whole field of computational linguistics, depending of course on what people submit. To me, this year there seemed to be a focus on various machine learning techniques, such as the use of silver standard data.

The BioNLP workshop, where I held my presentation, specializes in biomedical natural language processing, the application of computational linguistics to biomedical text mining. It is the most important yearly gathering of the BioNLP community, and my primary reason for attending this conference. This year, there seemed to be many talks related to the processing of medical records. My presentation was about a more technical aspect of text mining, which was not as well represented there as last year, but fortunately I too got several questions from the audience.

Opinion on the best paper and its topic: For me the highlight of the program was the detailed tutorial on IBM Watson, one of the most impressive applications of AI and computational linguistics to date. The Watson system was developed to participate in the “Jeopardy” quiz show, and subsequently won several of the show champions in a special episode organized by IBM. The Watson system combines a large set of cutting edge computational linguistics tools and provides a potentially useful AI approach to knowledge mining on many fields, but most importantly, it is the kind of tangible, practically impressive research, that gets the wider public more interested in the field of computational linguistics.

Number of participants: probably around 1000, around 20-30 in the BioNLP workshop

Social events: There was a welcome reception at the conference hotel, a buffet dinner combined with the poster session and a conference banquet at “Le Windsor Ballroom”, a larger venue next to the conference hotel. Despite the potentially confusingly large number of participants, I was able to meet both old colleagues and interesting new people working on a wide variety of topics in computational linguistics.

Touristic impressions: Montreal is a lively city, and despite at first looking like an American one, in a few days one comes to the conclusion that it is much closer to a European one. The venue was conveniently located in the center of the city, where the combination of modern skyscrapers and varied older buildings, often decorated with elaborate murals, gives the impression of a vibrant and culturally active city. Montreal was a nice place to hold a conference, except for the fact that a large F1 Grand Prix event was held in the city at the same time as our conference, driving up the prices of accommodation and making it very hard for many people coming in at the last minute to find any accommodation at all.

TUCS GP travel report: Nano Tera/Artist Summer School on Embedded System Design 2012 by Sergey Ostroumov

Full name of the event: Nano Tera/Artist Summer School on Embedded System Design 2012
Place and date: Aix-les-Bains, France, September 16th–22nd 2012
Type of event: Summer School

The scientific profile of the event: The school was organized by EPFL and ETH and sponsored by Nano-Tera. The school brought together some of the best lectures in the field of designing and verifying embedded systems. The lecturers discussed the state-of-the-art directions in hybrid-critical systems as well as in cyber-physical systems that are used in different application domains such as medicine, automobile development and aerospace. The topics of the lectures have covered different problems and solutions to them while designing such systems, e.g., architecting correct systems considering efficiency in terms of power consumption and performance.

Opinion on the best paper and its topic: In my opinion, all the lectures were of a significant importance as they addressed the issues related to the design and verification of critical (embedded) systems from different angles and at different levels of granularity.

Number of participants: 64

Social events: Dinner at Le Château de Candie, Gala dinner with live jazz music

Touristic impressions: The school venue was well organized allowing all the participants to make new contacts and exchange experience in the field. The school has taken place in a small town called Aix-les-Bains that has a lake nearby and is surrounded with mountains. Nice weather during the school complemented a nice impression of the entire event.

TUCS GP travel report: Second Joint Summer School on Biology, Computation and Information by Sepinoud Azimi

Full name of the event: Second Joint Summer School on Biology, Computation and Information
Place and date: Udine, Italy, September 10th–14th 2012
Type of event: Summer School

The scientific profile of the event: The School on Biology, Computation, and Information (BCI) has been launched first in 2011 and was planned to follow by two more Summer schools in 2012 and 2013. The main idea behind BCI is to bridge the gap between three disciplines: Mathematics, Biology and Computer Science. The content of the lectures in each Summer School is designed in a way to provide an overview of the techniques cross-bordering the three fields.

Opinion on the best paper and its topic: In my opinion the lectures given by Dr. Guido Sanguinetti on Mathematics were the most interesting parts.

Number of participants: 60

Social events: Guided walking tour of the city

Touristic impressions: Udine is a beautiful and old city. The city gives the impression of fully being in an Italian surrounding. Historic statues and buildings, impressive nature and hot weather make a very unique scenery.

TUCS GP travel report: ISIT 2012 by Toni Ernvall

Full name of the event: Visit at Princeton University and International Symposium on Information Theory 2012
Place and date: Princeton, NJ and Cambridge, MA, USA, June 25th – July 8th 2012
Type of event: Visit at a university and attending a conference

My article in ISIT:

The scientific profile of the event: In Princeton I met people from the engineering department. ISIT is the biggest conference on information theory. There are presentations for example on the following areas: channel coding, network coding and Shannon theory.

Opinion on the best paper and its topic: I liked the paper by V. Ntranos, G. Caire, and A. Dimakis: Allocation for Heterogenous Distributed Storage. Its topic was how one should design a distributed storage system when the error propability distribution on storage nodes is not uniform.

Number of participants: about 700 talks so maybe about 1000 participants

Social events in ISIT: Welcome reception and banquet dinner at Kresge Oval Tent in the MIT campus

Touristic impressions: Princeton is a nice and small university town. The campus of MIT in Cambridge is architecturally interesting because of many notable buildings by e.g. Alvar Aalto, Eero Saarinen and Frank Gehry.

TUCS GP travel report: Second Joint Summer School on Biology, Computation and Information by Bogdan Iancu

Full name of the event: Second Joint Summer School on Biology, Computation and Information
Place and date: Udine, Italy, September 10th–14th 2012
Type of event: Summer School

The scientific profile of the event: The Second Joint Summer School on Biology, Computation and Information was organized as an initiative of the Regional Graduate School of Friuli-Venezia Giulia Region. The aim of the summer school was to provide a systematic interdisciplinary analysis of problems at the frontiers of the three fields.

Opinion on the best paper and its topic: Since I focus my research on formal methods for quantitative model refinement, I enjoyed most the talks Vincent Danos held concerning model refinement. I am familiar with his work and I got the chance to actually broaden my knowledge on the topic.

Number of participants: 60

Social events: On the second last day of the summer school, the hosts organized a guided tour of the city.

Touristic impressions: Udine is a warm city, situated between the Adriatic Sea and the Alps, and it is the historical capital of the Friuli area. It offers both beautiful landscapes and a rich historical site.

TUCS GP travel report: Eighth International Summer School on Advanced Computer Architecture and Compilation for High-Performance and Embedded Systems by Mohammad Asad

Full name of the event: Eighth International Summer School on Advanced Computer Architecture and Compilation for High-Performance and Embedded Systems
Place and date: Fiuggi, Italy, July 8th–15th 2012
Type of event: Summer School

My article:

The scientific profile of the event: The summer was arranged by the European HiPEAC network of excellence and addressed the design and implementation of high-performance commodity computing devices for embedded systems, covering both processor architecture and programming/ compilation infrastructure.It was one week summer school for computer architects and compiler builders working in the field of high performance computer architecture and compilation for embedded systems. It covered broad range of subjects from low level technological issues to advanced compilation techniques.

Opinion on the best paper and its topic: Resource management in reconfigurable computing systems given by Katherine Compton. In the series of lectures, she introduced reconfigurable computing, how it works, and discussed applications that can benefit from it. It included a high-level introduction to some of the basic hardware elements involved. She also discussed the sub-structures that allow the system to reconfigure the hardware to implement different circuits. In particular, she presented methods for resource allocation and scheduling.

Number of participants: Approximately 400

Social events: There was 1 dinner night at the hotel where summer school was arranged.

Touristic impressions: A small and beautiful town. People were very friendly.

TUCS GP travel report: KES 2012 by Peter Sarlin

Full name of the event: 16th International Conference on Knowledge-Based and Intelligent Information & Engineering Systems (KES 2012)
Place and date: San Sebastian, Spain, September 10th–12th 2012
Type of event: Conference

My article:

My article:

The scientific profile of the event: KES is a multidisciplinary conference, providing an excellent forum and outlet for topics from a wide range of intelligent systems research.

Opinion on the best paper and its topic: The best paper was entitled Entropic Dimensionality Reduction in Discriminating Between Alzheimer’s Disease and Vascular Dementia and authored by Diman Todorov, Rossi Setchi and Antony Bayer. The key contribution of the paper was to provide a dimensionality reduction method for discriminating between Alzheimer’s Disease and Vascular Dementia in a dataset consisting mostly of binary data. Keynote speeches on Extreme Learning Machines and Unsupervised models for industrial applications were also interesting.

Number of participants: 250

Social events: A visit to a sidreria or sagardotegi, a type of cider house found in the Basque Country. We also has a traditional conference or social dinner.

Touristic impressions: San Sebastian is a nice small city by the sea. However, during my stay, the weather was quite windy and rainy.

TUCS GP travel report: ICIEA 2012 by Alexander Yin

Full name of the event: the 7th IEEE Conference on Industrial Electronics and Applications (ICIEA 2012)
Place and date: Singapore, July 17th–20th 2012
Type of event: Conference

My article:

The scientific profile of the event: ICIEA is a premier conference, providing an excellent forum for scientists, researchers, engineers and industrial practitioners throughout the world to present and discuss the latest technology advancement as well as future directions and trends in Industrial Electronics.

Opinion on the best paper and its topic: Smart Grids: An Industrial Electronics Perspective. This keynote presentation explained the necessity and huge potential of Smart Grid in saving energy, protecting environment and improving efficiency.

Number of participants: Around 500

Social events: Singapore tour

Touristic impressions: Singapore is a very beautiful city with hot and humid weather all year long. There are only two seasons there, namely, indoor and outdoor :)

TUCS GP travel report: ECCB’12 by Suwisa Kaewphan

Full name of the event: ECCB`12 - the European Conference on Computational Biology
Place and date: Basel, Switzerland, September 9th–12th 2012
Type of event: Conference

The scientific profile of the event: ECCB is one of the key European conferences in computational biology. The event is aimed at uniting scientists working in a broad range of disciplines including bioinformatics, computational biology, biology, medicine, and systems biology to present the research advanced in their fields and to create opportunity for collaborations.

Opinion on the best paper and its topic: The programme of this conference was rich with wonderful keynote lectures by outstanding researchers including a Nobel laureate. In my opinion, the best one would be the keynote lecture about “Ubiquitin proteolytic systems” by the Nobel laureate in Chemistry (2004), Aaron Ciechanover. The lecture was informative and yet entertaining. However, the topic is quite specific so it requires understanding of classical biology and biochemistry to fully understand all the details in his talk. Because of the difficulty of the topic for the people outside the field, many participants enjoyed the talk from another keynote speaker, Laurent Keller which was about the colony organization in fire ants. His lecture was considered to be the most entertaining among all the lectures in the conference since he often compared the colony organization with the social behavior in humans. During the talk that lasted one hour, the audience laughed multiple times. These two lectures were outstanding among other talks at the conference, however, I enjoyed most of the other talks as well. (Full name of Aaron Ciechanover`s keynote lecture : The Ubiquitin Proteolytic System - From Basic Mechanisms thru Human Diseases and on to Drug Development.) (Full name of Laurent Keller`s keynote lecture : A Y-like social chromosome causes alternative colony organization in fire ants.)

Number of participants: about 1100 participants for the main conference

Social events: There were three social events organized for this conference; Welcome Reception, Basel @ night and Conference Dinner. Welcome reception took place at Elisabethenkirche church was sponsored by the Canton of Basel City. The event was organized as a cocktail party with nice music. Basel @ night was organized by volunteer students who guided the conference participants walking around Basel in the night time and have dinner in selected restaurants. The conference dinner which took place at the main conference hall was sponsored by IBM. The dinner was accompanied with the music played by a Basel guitar soloist, Christoph Denoth, which I enjoyed it very much.

Touristic impressions: The conference took place at the Congress Center Basel. Unfortunately, at the time of the conference, there was a construction site opposite to the conference site so the surrounding of the venue was a little messy and noisy. In general, Basel is a wonderful city with the Rhine river passing through. One of the touristic impressions in Basel was seeing people floating in Rhine river with a swimming bag. I would describe this with the word “floating” since the current in the river is strong and rapid so you basically don`t need to swim at all. I heard from the local guide that this activity is particularly popular in summer time when the water is a little bit warmer. People will float along the river and take tram to start over the floating again and again. The time the conference took place is considered to be the end of the swiss summer or the beginning of autumn so there were fewer people enjoying floating in the Rhine.

TUCS GP travel report: Second Joint Summer School on Biology, Computation and Information by Diana-Elena Gratie

Full name of the event: Second Joint Summer School on Biology, Computation and Information
Place and date: Udine, Italy, September 10th–14th 2012
Type of event: Summer School

The scientific profile of the event: The Second Joint Summer School on Biology, Computation and Information is part of the Regional Graduate School Initiative sponsored by Regione Friuli-Venezia-Giulia. It is a three year initiative jointly organized by, and rotating among, Università di Trieste (2011 edition), Università di Udine (2012 edition) and SISSA (2013 edition). The main goal of the School is to give an updated overview of interdisciplinary techniques and problems cross-bordering the fields of Biology, Mathematics, and Computer Science.

Opinion on the best paper and its topic: In my opinion, the best lecture was Vincent Danos’s talk on Model Refinement, but I really enjoyed all the lectures.

Number of participants: 60

Social events: Guided tour of the city

Touristic impressions: The atmosphere during the summer school was friendly and academic, and we had the chance to make new contacts across the world. Udine is a small yet beautiful city in Italy, and a suitable place for the event, and the sunny weather was perfect.

TUCS GP travel report: CSR 2012 by Ville Salo

Full name of the event: CSR 2012 (Computer Science in Russia)
Place and date: Nizhny Novgorod, Russia, July 3rd to July 7th.
Type of event: Conference

The scientific profile of the event: CSR 2012 was one of the Alan Turing Year events, celebrating the important work of Turing on his 100th birthday. Accordingly, the main invited talk by Yuri Matiyasevich was about his work, an interesting exposition of some of his less known work in number theory on the Riemann Hypothesis, which I was not aware of. The focus of the conference was on automata and algorithmics, and as the conference was relatively small (37 talks), there was only one lecture track, and it was thus possible to attend every talk.

Opinion on the best paper and its topic: To me, the most interesting talks were probably Mikołaj Bojańczyk`s "Infinite Sets That Are Finite Up to Permutations", Prateek Karandikar and Philippe Schnoebelen`s "Cutting Through Regular Post Embedding Problems" and Timo Jolivet and Jarkko Kari`s "Consistency of Multidimensional Combinatorial Substitutions". It was interesting to hear a talk by Mikołaj Bojańczyk for the simple reason that he has solved many problems on tree-walking automata which I tried - and failed - to solve for my master`s thesis. Not surprisingly, the talk was great (although on a very different topic), and perhaps finally opened my eyes to the great capability of logic to capture the gist of, and immensely generalize known results. The talk by Karandikar and Schnoebelen was interesting to me since the post correspondence problem has been studied a lot in University of Turku and I have given some thought to it myself. Yet, Karandikar and Schnoebelen were able to ask a seemingly very simple new question about this object, and it turned out the solution was far from simple. Jolivet and Kari`s talk was perhaps the closest to my own talk in topic (although still very different), and it surprised me to hear how little is still known about two-dimensional substitutions.

My article. The topic of my own talk was "A Characterization of Cellular Automata Generated by Idempotents on the Full Shift", and it was the only talk on cellular automata in CSR 2012. This was my first peer-reviewed paper, and one of my few papers studying cellular automata without additional structure. The characterization was one of my first results on cellular automata, and at the time of publication, it was already a year old. It was nice to finally find a publication venue for it. Inspired by the talks, I also took some time in the evenings to prepare a paper for the Russian Finnish Symposium on Discrete Mathematics 2012, which I presented in September in Turku.

Touristic impressions: Of course, in addition to the scientific program, I had time to explore the city of Nizhny Novgorod with other conference participants. None of us spoke any Russian, so there were some problems with language, but we always managed to find a way to communicate eventually. As there is quite a bit of collaboration between Finnish and Russian universities, I decided to take a basic course in Russian as a preparation for future trips. There was also an organized sight-seeing tour around the city, and I was particularly impressed by the elaborate yet serene decorations of the churches.


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