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Thursday, May 26th at 2:30PM

This is the 4rd DSS seminar for the 2021-2022 academic year from Prof. John Doyle will be held on Thursday, May 26th at 2:30PM until 4:00PM Via Zoom. Please see the seminar details as well as the link for Zoom below. This is part of ELEC 891 and attendance will be taken at the Seminar.

Title: Think Global, Act Local: Universal Laws and Architectures and Their Fragilities

Abstract: Recent years have unfortunately highlighted intrinsic and systemic unsustainability and fragilities in our society and technologies.  Detailed mechanisms underlying these in immune, medical, computing, social, legal, energy, and transportation systems are incredibly diverse, but all are enabled by shared universal features of their architectures, whose designs are largely ad hoc historical artifacts.  We need to more systematically design architectures that produce more robust and sustainable systems, including allowing higher layer learning and lower layer efficiencies to contribute.  I’ll sketch the basic architectural concepts of laws, layers, levels, diversity, and sweet spots and the new math necessary to connect them, including System Level Synthesis (SLS). Crucial hardware layer constraints on sparsity, locality, and delay limit system layer functionality, robustness, and efficiency, but proper layering can mitigate this via diversity-enabled sweet spots (DeSS). Illustrative examples include all our tech nets, layered brains, layered immunity augmented by medicine and policy, systemic legal fragilities and the US 14th amendment, cascading failures in energy systems, climate change, language and its hijacking in social media, and wildfire ecosystems.  New theory and technology is promising if it can be properly deployed.  There are even some encouraging but relatively unexplored animal models for social architectures that give some broader hope.

Bio: Chameau Professor at Caltech. BS, MS EE MIT. PhD Math UC Berkeley. Research interests in integrated theory foundations and architectures for complex networks that enable robust efficiency, with applications to tech, bio, neuro, and social systems.  Has/had the shortest abstract in IEEE history, multiple world records and championships in various sports, and fantastic students and colleagues.

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Topic: Distinguished Seminar Series Speaker - Prof. John Doyle
Time: May 26, 2022 02:30 PM Eastern Time (US and Canada)

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Thursday, May 12, 2022 at 2:30 PM

This is a joint seminar between School of Computing and ECE from Dr. Andrew Adamatzky. Please find information and a Microsoft Teams Meeting link below.

TITLE:  Neuroscience without Neurons

ABSTRACT:  Spikes of electrical potential can be seen as one of the key attributes of neurons. However, not only neurons spike. In the invited talk we will overview our research results on spiking in chemical, physical and living substrates and demonstrate how various substrates can realise their sensing and information processing potential via electrical response to a stimulation. Examples of spiking substrates presented include Belousov-Zhabotinsky chemical medium, slime mould and fungi. We outline pathways towards experimental laboratory prototyping of living brains from theses. We present experimental laboratory prototypes of reservoir computing with slime mould and fungi and show how the spiking behaviour of cytoskeleton networks can be used to realise logical circuits. We complete our talk discussing a language of fungi derived from electrical spiking behaviour of mycelium bound composites.

BIO: Andrew Adamatzky is a Professor of Unconventional Computing and head of the Unconventional Computing Group at UWE, Bristol, UK. His research interests include non-standard and nature inspired computation, theoretical computer science, artificial intelligence and crowd dynamics, mathematical biology and psychology, non-linear sciences. His recent work has included development of logical and arithmetical circuits in excitable chemical media, slime mould, and liquid crystal figures; and also, development of intelligent massively parallel actuator arrays, formal languages and complexity of cellular automata models, novel types of information processing in memristive devices, design of parallel hybrid computers from living slime mould and fungi. He authored 7 research monographs (published in Springer, Elsevier, World Scientific): "Identification of Cellular Automata", "Computing in Nonlinear media and Automata Collectives", "Reaction-Diffusion Computers", "Dynamics of Crowd Minds", "Physarum Machines". "Reaction-Diffusion Automata", "Bioevaluation of World Transport Networks",  edited 14 monographs (published in the MIT Press, Elsevier, Springer, World Scientific), authored over 300 papers in peer reviewed international journals, founded the Unconventional Computing Lab at UWE, Bristol, founded two international Journals: "Int J Cellular Automata" and "Int J Unconventional Computing"  and one book series "Emergency, Complexity, Computation".  News stories about Adamatzky research are published in New Scientist, Scientific American, Wired, Technology Reviews, The Guardian, New York Times, etc. He was amongst key figure in the documentary movies `The Creeping Garden’ (2014, UK) and `The Blob’ (2019, France).


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Friday, April 29, 2022 at 2:30PM until 4:00PM

The second DSS seminar for the 2021-2022 academic year from Prof. Marsha Chechik will be held on Friday, April 29th at 2:30PM until 4:00PM Via Zoom (see link below). Please see the seminar details as well as the link for Zoom below. This is part of ELEC 891 and if you cannot attend due to attending class, please send an email. Attendance will be taken at the Seminar.

Title:  On Safety, Assurance and Reliability: A Software Engineering Perspective

Abstract: From financial services platforms to social networks to vehicle control, software has come to mediate many activities of daily life. Governing bodies and standards organizations have responded to this trend by creating regulations and standards to address issues such as safety, security and privacy. In this environment, the compliance of software development to standards and regulations has emerged as a key requirement. Compliance claims and arguments are often captured in assurance cases, with linked evidence of compliance. Evidence can come from test cases, verification proofs, human judgement, or a combination of these. That is, we try to build (safety-critical) systems carefully according to well justified methods and articulate these justifications in an assurance case that is ultimately judged by a human. Building safety arguments for traditional software systems is difficult ­­ they are lengthy and expensive to maintain, especially as software undergoes change. Safety is also notoriously non­compositional ­­ each subsystem might be safe but together they may create unsafe behaviors. It is also easy to miss cases, which in the simplest case would mean developing an argument for when a condition is true but missing arguing for a false condition. Furthermore, many ML­based systems are becoming safety­ critical. For example, recent Tesla self­ driving cars misclassified emergency vehicles and caused multiple crashes. ML­based systems typically do not have precisely specified and machine­verifiable requirements. While some safety requirements can be stated clearly: "the system should detect all pedestrians at a crossing", these requirements are for the entire system, making them too high­ level for safety analysis of individual components. Thus, systems with ML components (MLCs) add a significant layer of complexity for safety assurance. I argue that safety assurance should be an integral part of building safe and reliable software systems, but this process needs support from advanced software engineering and software analysis. In this talk, I outline a few approaches for development of principled, tool-supported methodologies for creating and managing assurance arguments. I then describe recent work on specifying and verifying reliability requirements for machine-learned components in safety-critical domains.

Bio: Marsha Chechik is Professor and Chair in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Toronto. She received her Ph.D. from the University of Maryland in 1996. Prof. Chechik’s research interests are in the application of formal methods to improve the quality of software. She has authored over 200 papers in formal methods, software specification and verification, computer safety and security and requirements engineering. Marsha Chechik is Program Chair of the 2023 International Conference on Formal Methods (FM'23).  She has been Program Committee Co-Chair of the 2021 International Conference on Foundations of Software Engineering (ESEC/FSE’21), 2018 International Conference in Software Engineering (ICSE’18), 2016 International Conference on Tools and Algorithms for the Construction and Analysis of Systems (TACAS'16), the 2016 Working Conference on Verified Software: Theories, Tools, and Experiments (VSTTE16), the 2014 International Conference on Automated Software Engineering (ASE'14), the 2008 International Conference on Concurrency Theory (CONCUR'08), the 2008 International Conference on Computer Science and Software Engineering (CASCON'08), and the 2009 International Conference on Formal Aspects of Software Engineering (FASE'09). She is a Distinguished Member of ACM, a Vice Chair of ACM SIGSOFT, and holds a Bell University Chair in Software Engineering.


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Thursday, November 4, 2021 at 2:30 pm

The first DSS seminar for the 2021-2022 academic year from Prof. Julia Schnabel will be held on Thursday, November 4th at 2:30PM until 4:00PM Via Teams. It is a joint seminar between CS and ECE. Please see the seminar details as well as the link for Teams below.

Title:  AI-enabled image quality control

Abstract: Artificial intelligence, in particular from the class of machine learning and deep learning, has shown great promise for application in medical imaging. However, the success of AI-based techniques is limited by the availability and quality of the training data. A common approach is to train methods on well annotated and curated databases of high-quality image acquisitions, which then may fail on real patient cases in a hospital setting. Another problematic arises from the trade-off between scanning time and image resolution, and the differences between imaging domains.. In this talk I will present some of our recent approaches that aim to address some of these challenges, by using AI as an enabling technique for improved image reconstruction, realistic data augmentation and further downstream tasks.

Bio: Julia A. Schnabel is Professor of Computational Imaging and AI in Medicine at Technical University of Munich (TUM Liesel Beckmann Distinguished Professorship) and Director of a new Institute of Machine Learning in Biomedical Imaging at Helmholtz Center Munich (Helmholtz Distinguished Professorship), with secondary appointment as Chair in Computational Imaging at King’s College London. She graduated in Computer Science (equiv. MSc) from Technical University of Berlin, Berlin, Germany, and was awarded the PhD in Computer Science from University College London, UK. In 2007, she joined the University of Oxford, UK as Associate Professor in Engineering Science (Medical Imaging), where she became Full Professor of Engineering Science by Recognition of Distinction in 2014. She joined King’s College London as a new Chair  in 2015, and in 2021 joined TUM and Helmholtz Munich for her current positions. Her research interests include machine/deep learning, nonlinear motion modeling, as well as multimodality and quantitative imaging, for cancer imaging, cardiac imaging, neuroimaging and perinatal imaging. Dr. Schnabel has been elected Fellow of IEEE (2021), Fellow of ELLIS (2019), and Fellow of the MICCAI Society (2018). She is an Associate Editor of the IEEE Transactions on Medical Imaging on whose steering board she serves since 2021, the IEEE Transactions of Biomedical Engineering, on the Editorial Board of Medical Image Analysis and Executive/Founding Editor of MELBA. She currently serves as elected Technical Representative on IEEE EMBS AdCom, as voting member of the IEEE EMBS Technical Committee on Biomedical Imaging and Image Processing (BIIP), as Executive Secretary to the MICCAI board, and as member of ELLIS Health and ELLIS Munich.


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