Where academic tradition
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TUCS Newsletter 31.10.2014

Content of the newsletter

TUCS activities

New courses


Latest publications at TUCS

TUCS activities

TUCS 20 years anniversary

Turku Centre for Computer Science (TUCS) celebrates its 20 years anniversary this year. TUCS was founded in 1994 on the basis of excellence in fundamental research in computer science and discrete mathematics as represented by its founders: Ralph-Johan Back, Timo Järvi, Tapio Reponen, and Arto Salomaa.

The anniversary was celebrated on Friday 24 October 2014. The festivities were started off with a Distinguished Lecture by Turing Award winner professor Joseph Sifakis on the subject "From Programs to Systems – Building a Smarter World". The lecture was held in lecture hall Beta in the ICT building and attracted a full lecture room. The interesting lecture was followed by a poster session about the research in TUCS. Nearly all TUCS research units had prepared a poster for the session and the 150 person crowd had the chance to read up on research done at the TUCS units as well as acquaint themselves with the TUCS history in general.

In the evening a cocktail party and dinner were held at Radisson Blu Marina Palace Hotel for invited guests.Over a hundred guests were present at the event. The cocktail party was opened by an address from the TUCS director, professor Johan Lilius followed by recollections from the founding members of TUCS; professors Ralph-Johan Back, Timo Järvi and Arto Salomaa. The rector of University of Turku, Kalervo Väänänen and the chancellor of the Åbo Akademi University, Jarl-Thure Eriksson, presented short greetings from the universities and  Rikumatti Levomäki from Turku Science Park presented the city of Turku’s greetings. Juhani Karhumäki as a long standing TUCS Board member and Head of the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at the University of Turku also gave a short speech. The more formal part of the evening was finished off with a greeting by Olli Mertanen from Turun Ammattikorkeakoulu. The cocktail event was followed by a three course dinner with short speeches by the Chairman of the TUCS Board, Tapio Salakoski, and a TUCS Graduate School Alumnus, Tiberiu Seceleanu.

News items in the media about the TUCS 20 years anniversary:





TUCS Research Programme activities

TITLE:  Cyclic reducibility and conjugacy in Coxeter groups  
ABSTRACT:  Loosely speaking, a Coxeter group is a generalized reflection group. Reduced words give rise to natural labeled posets called heaps. Conjugating a word by an initial or terminal generator cyclically shifts it, which puts an equivalence on the underlying posets, generated by converting minimal into maximal elements. We call the resulting equivalence classes "toric posets," and they correspond to regions of graphic toric hyperplane arrangements, just as ordinary partial orders correspond to regions of graphic hyperplane arrangements. There are natural toric analogues of many standard features of ordinary partial orders, such as chains, antichains, intervals, transitivity, Hasse diagrams, extensions, total orders, morphisms, and order ideals. This leads to a notion of a toric heap, which is a labeled toric poset. Classic problems on reducibility in Coxeter groups turn into new problems on cyclic reducibility and conjugacy. This talk should be accessible to anyone who knows wh

1st lecture: “Alan Turing was one of our great 20th century mathematicians, and pioneer of computer science. However, he may be best remembered as one of the leading code breakers of Bletchley Park during World War II. It was Turing's brilliant insights and mathematical mind helped break Enigma, the apparently unbreakable code used by the German military. We present a history of both Alan Turing and the Enigma, leading up to this fascinating battle of man against machine.”  

2nd lecture: “For as long as we have had secrets we have had secret messages. We present a look at the fascinating history and mathematics of codes and code breaking  - from ancient Greece to the present day, including the famous Enigma Machine used in World War II.”

More information on James Grime can be found from his homepage http://singingbanana.com/

James Grime is visit in Finland is a collaboration of LUMA-Suomi and Federation of Finnish-British Societies. Lectures in Turku are organized by Lounais-Suomen LUMA-keskus and Resurscenter för matematik, natusvetenskap och teknik I skolan.

TUCS Short Course: Challenges of Secure Computation and Communication on Energy-Constrained Devices

Lecturer: Prof. Joerg Keller, FernUniversitaet in Hagen, Germany


Tue 14.10.2014, 9-16 in Algol (B3039)

Wed 15.10.2014,  9-16 in Algol (B3039)


Energy-constrained devices such as sensor nodes have conflicting targets: increasing mission time by reducing power consumption, increasing security of operation by adequate encryption and authentication techniques. On the one hand, reducing the number of instructions per cryptographic operation or reducing processor speed decreases power consumption. On the other hand decreasing key length increases vulnerability, and increasing the time to perform a protocol increases energy consumption due to longer

activation of the radio receiver.

Most students are either familiar with the security aspects or with the hardware and energy-efficiency aspects of such scenarios, but not with both. Hence, the goal of the course is to provide the necessary level of familiarity with both aspects, and use the example scenario to demonstrate the challenges and solution approaches for these kinds of multi-criteria optimization problems.


The first part of the course will summarize facts from security/encryption, computer hardware and power consumption, and optimization, each field is treated with consideration of the other two fields (3 lectures). The second part of the course will focus on two problem fields from the example scenario: (1) determine the required key length given a certain attacker strength (more security related) (2 lectures), (2) how to choose speed when performing a cryptographic protocol such as authentic code update to minimize total energy consumption (2 lectures). The final part will give an outlook where similar problems appear in theory and practice (1 lecture).

Students should have their own laptop to perform the lab. exercises.

Addressed student groups:

Doctoral students or master students with a background and interest in hardware, security and energy efficiency.


basic knowledge of security primitives

basic knowledge of computer organization

basic knowledge of combinatorial optimization

knowledge of C or Java programming for exercises


2 days

8 lectures (45 min each), 4 per day (morning)

2 lab exercises (2+hrs each), 1 per day (afternoon)

TUCS GP PhD defences

On Friday, October 17th, TUCS GP Student Muhammad Nazrul Islam presented his Doctoral thesis "Design and Evaluation of Web Interface Signs to Improve Web Usability: A Semiotic Framework" for public critisism. The opponent of M.Sc. Islam was Professor Simone D. J. Barbosa, Pontifícia Universidade Católica do Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Docent Frank Tétard acted as a custos at this public defence.

Time: 12 noon
Place: Auditorium Gamma, ICT Building

On Thursday, October 9th, TUCS GP Student Adnan Ashraf presented his Doctoral thesis "Cost-Efficient Virtual Machine Management: Provisioning, Admission Control, and Consolidation" for public critisism. The opponent of M.Sc. Ashraf was Dr. Radu Calinescu, University of York, UK. Professor Ivan Porres acted as a custos at this public defence.

Time: 11:00 a.m.

Place: Auditorium Alpha, ICT Building  

On Tuesday, September 30th, TUCS GP Student Hongyan Liu presented her Doctoral thesis "On Advancing Business Intelligence in the Electricity Retail Market" for public critisism. The opponent of M.Sc. Liu was Akademischer Oberrat Dr. Henning Baars, Stuttgart University, Germany. Professor Barbro Back acted as a custos at this public defence.

Time: 12 noon
Place: Auditorium Gamma, ICT Building

New courses

New INFORTE courses


Qualitative Research Methods in Information Systems

October 13th – 14th



Professor Michael D. Myers (University of Auckland Business School, New Zealand)


Professor Tuure Tuunanen (University of Jyväskylä)


Registration: August 1st – October 1st

Registration and more information: http://inforte.jyu.fi/events/qualitative_research_methods


Digital Activism

November 28th



Assistant professor Lisen Selander (University of Gothenburg, Sweden)

Professor Sirkka Järvenpää (McCombs School of Business, University of Texas Austin / Aalto University School of Science)


Professor Matti Rossi (Aalto University School of Business)


Registration closing date: November 14th

Registration and more information: http://inforte.jyu.fi/events/digiact


Software Release Planning

December 15th – 17th



Professor Guenther Ruhe (University of Calgary, Canada)


Professor Burak Turhan, University of Oulu, Finland


Registration closing date: December 1st

Registration and more information: http://inforte.jyu.fi/events/SWP


Please, see all detailed programs in INFORTE.fi: http://inforte.jyu.fi/


Courses on transferable skills at University of Turku



Call for papers: special issue of Theoretical Computer Science on CS2Bio

We invite submissions of papers on the theory and practice of formal methods in biology for publication in a special issue of the Journal of Theoretical Computer Science (TCS),

Section C (Theory of Natural Computing).

We especially welcome extended versions of papers presented at the CS2Bio 2014 Workshop in Berlin, affiliated with DisCoTec 2014 (http://combio.abo.fi/cs2bio14/); it is expected that such submissions incorporate the changes suggested in the reviews of your original conference submission; moreover, such submissions are expected to have additional material (proofs omitted in the conference proceedings version, new results, etc.) that did not appear in the conference paper.

We also invite submissions of papers not presented at CS2Bio 2014, provided they fall within the scope of the call.


This special issue is devoted to original research papers on the theory and applications of formal methods in biology. Of special interest are contributions on the computational modelling of a specific biological phenomenon, and on developments in modelling, simulation, testing or verification approaches in computer science that lead to novel and promising applications in biology and biomedicine. While the main focus is on computational processes in living cells, we also encourage submissions concerning the modeling and analysis of processes and systems in synthetic biology.

Topics of Interest

In particular, the topics of interest include but are not limited to:

Submission Format and Guideline

Papers should have no more than about 20 pages and should be formatted according to Elsevier's elsarticle.cls document style used for articles in the journal of Theoretical Computer Science. A detailed submission guideline is available as “Guide to Authors” at:


All manuscripts and any supplementary material should be submitted through Elsevier Editorial System (EES). The authors must select as “SI:CS2Bio” when they reach the “Article Type” step in the submission process. The EES submission website is located at:


All papers will be peer-reviewed by three independent reviewers. Requests for additional information should be addressed to the guest editors.

Call for papers: 23rd European Conference on Information Systems (ECIS 2015)


Track: Sustainably Digital



May 26-29, 2015, Münster, Germany (http://www.ecis2015.eu/)



Paper Submission System open: October 6th, 2014 (Monday next week!)

Paper Submission deadline (and yes, it's a HARD deadline): November 28th, 2014



Chadi Aoun, University of Technology, Sydney, Australia

Helena Karsten, Åbo Akademi University, Finland, ekarsten@abo.fi (Corresponding track chair)

Stefan Seidel, University of Liechtenstein, Principality of Liechtenstein

Helen Hasan, University of Wollongong, Australia




The networked digital society has promise for a sustainable society, and this poses both challenges and opportunities. Sustainability is a multidimensional concept encompassing environmental, economic, human and social aspects, all of which could be strongly influenced by information systems (Elliot 2011; Melville 2010). Information systems carry significant potential for supporting sustainable development, that is: “development which meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs” (Our Common Future –report, UN, 1987). We can look at sustainability from different perspectives (Elkington 1997; Kasvio 2012; Urry 2011):

  1. Environmental sustainability: In the future, there will not be enough natural resources to allow for a continuous expansion of the existing forms of work. This calls for a shift towards more environmentally responsible organizational and societal work processes.
  2. Economic sustainability: Responsible economical endeavors are competitive enough to be expected to continue in future. The productivity level allows those who participate in these economic activities to expect to earn decent incomes.
  3. Human sustainability: People must be given the possibility to maintain their health and to enjoy their work so that they can – and want – to continue working until the normal retirement age.
  4. Social sustainability: The sacrifices and rewards are distributed on a just manner. The working possibilities of one group of people are not realized at the cost of another group. If injustices exist they will probably lead to social tensions which sooner or later threaten the continuity of existing arrangements.

In terms of environmental sustainability, information systems can, for instance, help individuals, groups, and firms choose sustainable alternatives that reduce waste and use of energy. Economic sustainability has always been at the core of management information systems, transaction processing, and data management. Human sustainability concerns personal health and well-being, where individuals can be supported by sensor networks, personal information systems, and data management, amongst others. Social sustainability can be supported not only buy social software but also by governments, cities, companies and people, all together.

The aim of this track is to advance the discussion on the role and relevance of information systems in the context of sustainability. It intends to provide thought leaders with a forum that accounts for the breadth of sustainability research in the information systems discipline in terms of environmental, economic, human, and social sustainability. Potential topics range from the design of systems and digital services for sustainability to the application of existing theories on change at the individual, group, organizational, and societal levels, as well as the development of new theory.

Conceptual papers are very welcome. We also invite rigorous and relevant empirical studies employing a wide variety of methods. In order to fully incorporate societal, technical and business aspects, we welcome contributions from a broad spectrum of disciplines.

Types of Contributions

Topics of interest include, but are not limited to

Sustainable digital life

Sustainable business practices and processes

Sustainable outsourcing

We are primarily searching for full research papers. However, to foster the timely dissemination of innovative ideas, we also welcome groundbreaking research in progress.



This track is supported by the Special Interest Group for Green Information Systems (SIGGreen) of the Association for Information Systems.

The Information Society will invite the best papers to be published in a Special Issue.



Pamela Abbott, Brunel University

Ron Babin, Ryerson University

Sarah Beecham, University of Limerick and Lero

Nicholas Berente, University of Georgia

Aileen Cater-Steel, University of Southern Queensland

Vanessa Cooper, RMIT University

Brian Donnellan, National University of Ireland Maynooth

Gilbert Fridgen, University of Bayreuth

Johann Kranz, University of Goettingen

Alemayehu Molla, RMIT University

Prasong Praneetpolgrang, Sripatum University

Stephen Smith, Macquarie University

Matti Vartiainen, Aalto University

Savanid Vatanasakdakul, Macquarie University

Richard T Watson, University of Georgia

A Course on Ultra-low-power Electronics

Title: Special Topics in Embedded Electronics

Course Code: ETT_3074, Total ECTS: 5

Part-1: Advanced Architectures: July 7-14, 2014 (Done Already)

Part2: Ultra Low Power Electronics: In August, November 12-14, 2014 (2 ECTS)

Part-2: Ultra Low Power Electronics: Nov 12-14 (10hours)


Place: First Floor, ICT Talo, Joukahaisenkatu 3-5 B, 20520, Turku Finland

Wednesday 12th November, Time: 10:00-14:00, Lauri Koskinen (4 hours), @Beta Auditorium

Topic: Survey of Low Voltage Implementation and Minimizing Energy Consumption

-Technology Scaling

-Low Voltage Logic Designs

-History of Minimum voltage and Energy

-Survey of sub-threshold CMOS Circuits

-Energy Performance Contours

-Modeling Minimum energy consumption

Thursday 13th of November, Time: 10:00-12:00, Rajeev Kanth (2 hours)@Alpha Auditorium

Topic: Low Power Design Essentials

-Nanometer Transistors and Their Models

-Power and Energy Basics

Friday 14th November, Time: 12:00-16:00, Zhuo Zou (4 hours) @Beta Auditorium

Topic: Ultra Low power wireless

-Low power short range radio

-energy harvesting,

-power management

Course Registration: Students can register this course by sending an email: rajkan@utu.fi by 05.11.2014

DAAD – German Academic Exchange Service – Research Grants for foreign PhD


1. One-Year Grants, Application deadline: 19.12.2014

2. Short-Term Grants, Application deadline: 1.10.2014 / 1.04.2015

3. Cotutelle Doctoral Programmes, Application deadline: 19.12.2014

Information on application requirements and application procedure: www.funding-guide.de

DAAD (German Academic Exchange Service) offers Research Grants for foreign PhD Candidates:

1.Research Stays for University Academics and Scientists

2.Re-invitation Programme for Former Scholarship Holders

Application deadline: October 1st for the scholarship period January 1st to June 30th of the following year. / April 1st for the scholarship period July 1st of the same year to January 31st of the following year.

Information on application requirements and application procedure: www.funding-guide.de

Information and advisory centres: DAAD-Lecturers in Finland

Dina Heegen



Dr. Anta Kursisa


Anne Stegemann


SLUSH start-up conference        


The Northern Europe's biggest start-up event SLUSH will gather more than 10000 visitors and 2500 companies to Helsinki, Finland on 18-19 November. EIT ICT Labs will be bringing around 20 health start-ups from all over Europe to demonstrate, pitch and meet potential investors. We are also supporting start-ups from other EU countries where EIT ICT Labs is not present with reduced ticket prices.

You can meet these innovative companies and our business developers on the latter day, 19th of November at the Health Track area. Mark your calendar and join us at this fantastic event full of passion and innovation!

More information of SLUSH from here: www.slush.org

Anita Borg Memorial Scholarship: Europe, Middle East and Africa

Scholarship for female Bachelor’s, Master’s and PhD students studying Computer Science or a closely related technical field. Recipients will receive a 7000 EUR Scholarship and have the opportunity to attend a networking retreat in summer 2015

Deadline for applications: February, 2015

More information: www.google.com/anitaborg/emea/

Europe Scholarship for Students with Disabilities  

Scholarship for Bachelor’s, Master’s or PhD students with a disability studying Computer Science or a closely related technical field. Recipients will receive a 7000 EUR Scholarship.

Deadline for applications: February 17, 2015

More information: www.google.com/studentswithdisabilities-europe/

TUCS GP travel reports

TUCS GP travel report: Mediterranean Conference on Information Systems by Tingting Lin

Full name of the event: Mediterranean Conference on Information Systems

Place and date: Italy, Verona, September 3rd – 5th, 2014

Type of event: Conference

My article:

The scientific profile of the event: The conference theme is “IS in times of metamorphosis”, exploring challenges and opportunities in an ever-changing digitalized world. A wide range of research areas are covered, including digital innovation and design, enterprise engineering, corporate social responsibility, social media analytics, and many more. Although this conference is “Mediterranean”, participants are from many different countries in Europe. I met many Swedish and Danish researchers there, for example

Opinion on the best paper and its topic: It is the key-note by professor Carlo Pelanda, on “The challenges of the governance of info-genesis”, in which he talked about many problems on the understanding of new technology hindering the progress of our society.

Number of participants: Around 100

Social events: Welcome party: with drinks and light cocktail food in Casa Mazzanti Caffè; Social dinner: in Aquila Nera Caffè, with light food only

Touristic impressions: The conference was held in the premise of University of Verona. I didn’t have much time to walk around the city, just a walk on the leaving day from the hotel to the bus station. It looks like a typical Roman city, with lots of old buildings and a river. Food is nice, except the conference offered lunch and dinner.

TUCS GP travel report: Asia conference of Information Systems by Petter Sandvik 

Full name of the event: IEEE International Symposium on a World of Wireless, Mobile and Multimedia Networks (WoWMoM 2014)

Place and date: Australia, Sydney, June 16th – 19th, 2014

Type of event: Conference

My article:

The scientific profile of the event: The 15th IEEE International Symposium on a World of Wireless, Mobile and Multimedia Networks took place on June 16-19 in central Sydney. The focus was on academic but practical research into computer networks, covering a wide variety of subjects: from nanoscale sensor networks and vehicular networking to video streaming and peer-to-peer networking. The first day consisted of three workshops in parallel in the morning, with a further three in parallel in the afternoon. During the three following days, i.e., the actual conference, there were two sessions in parallel except for during the two keynotes, PhD forum, best paper session, and work-in-progress poster session.

Opinion on the best paper and its topic: For me, the best presentation was the one that also was given the "best paper"-award: 'Practical Interference Alignment in the Frequency Domain for OFDM-based Wireless Access Networks', by Adrian Loch et al. There were others where the subject matter was more interesting to me, but they were not as nicely presented.

Number of participants: approximately 100 including the workshops

Social events: Apart from lunches all days there was a reception at The Theatre Bar at the End of the Wharf (overlooking Sydney Harbour) on the 17th, and on the 18th there was a dinner at The Malaya (a restaurant in Darling Harbour in Sydney).

Touristic impressions: I arrived in Sydney the day before the conference, and did not have much time to see the city then or during the conference, but fortunately I had decided to stay a full two weeks in Australia. After the conference ended I first went with a few other people from the conference on a ferry trip to Manly Beach north of Sydney, which was very nice. I then spent a few days in Blue Mountains west of Sydney, which I very much enjoyed, although since it was winter in Australia the nature did not seem as spectacular as it could have been. I then went back to Sydney and had time to visit Bondi Beach, Featherdale Wildlife Park, Cronulla Beach, Sydney Botanical Garden, and other sights. Apart from the long travel time to and from Australia I very much enjoyed my visit.

TUCS GP travel report: Asia Conference of Information Systems by Abayomi Baiyere

Full name of the event: Pacific Asia Conference of Information Systems 2013 Conference

Place and date: China, December 2nd – 3rd, 2013

Type of event: Conference

My article:

The scientific profile of the event: The Pacific Asia Conference on Information Systems is an international IS conference a representative of the Association of Information Systems AIS in the pacific Asia region. The conference aims to enable and encourage international and regional practitioners and researchers from both the industry and academia to have a scientific rendezvous and have a platform for knowledge and information exchange.

Opinion on the best paper and its topic: Felix Tan et al. paper was one of the 3 selected papers and one that I found relevant to my research.

Number of participants: About 800

Social events: A visit to the Panda is one of the highlights of the city. Additionally, the conference organized a Chinese opera event for participants which was very well appreciated.

Touristic impressions: The attractions in the city is worth visiting again.

Open jobs at University of Turku and Åbo Akademi University

Latest publications at TUCS

Edited books (1):

Articles in journals (15):

Articles in proceedings (31):

Chapters in edited books (1):

Ph.D. thesis (2):

Technical reports (3):