Last modified on October 2, 2014, 7:39 am

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Prof. Luciano Floridi (Oxford Internet Institute, University of Oxford)

Luciano Floridi is Professor of Philosophy and Ethics of Information at the University of Oxford, Senior Research Fellow at the Oxford Internet Institute, and Governing Body Fellow of St Cross College, Oxford. He is also Adjunct Professor, Department of Economics, American University, Washington D.C. Among his recognitions, he has been awarded the Cátedras de Excelencia Prize by the University Carlos III of Madrid (2014-15), was the UNESCO Chair in Information and Computer Ethics and Gauss Professor of the Academy of Sciences in Göttingen. He is a recipient of the APA's Barwise Prize, the IACAP's Covey Award, and the INSEIT's Weizenbaum Award. He is an AISB and BCS Fellow, Editor in Chief of Philosophy & Technology and of the Synthese Library. In 2012, he was Chairman of EU Commission's "Onlife Initiative". His most recent books are: The Fourth Revolution - How the infosphere is reshaping human reality (Oxford University Press, 2014), The Ethics of Information (Oxford University Press, 2013), The Philosophy of Information (Oxford University Press, 2011), The Cambridge Handbook of Information and Computer Ethics (editor, Cambridge University Press, 2010), and Information: A Very Short Introduction (Oxford University Press, 2010).

The Logic of Information Design

At least since the sixties, there have been many attempts to understand the logic of design, when the latter is broadly understood as a purposeful way of realising an artefact. In this talk, I shall explore current methodologies to see how they may be adapted to cases in which what is being designed is information, in the sense of both a semantic artefact (e.g. a train timetable) and a communication process (e.g. the announcement that a specific train is leaving from particular platform).

Prof. Andrei Voronkov (University of Manchester)

Andrei Voronkov graduated from the department of Mathematics at Novosibirsk State University in 1982. Between 1982 and 1989 he was a PhD student in Novosibirsk State University and a researcher at the Institute of Mathematics, Novosibirsk. He received his PhD in mathematics from Novosibirsk State University in 1987, He was then interested in constructive logic, realisability and program synthesis and also did some work in the foundations of theorem proving. In 1989 he moved as senior researcher to the International Lab of Intelligent Systems in Novosibirsk and in 1991 as researcher in European Computer Industry Research Centre (ECRC) in Munich, this time interested in logic programming. In 1993 he moved to Uppsala University as senior lecturer. He worked on a variety of topics, including theorem proving, decision procedures, infinite state model checking and database theory until 1999.

In 1993 he visited a Bull research lab in France. This visit sparked his interest in practical aspects of theorem proving, so he quickly implemented a first-order theorem prover Vampire, which since then has won 28 World Championship titles in theorem proving. His research interest shifted to implementation techniques for theorem provers, equality reasoning and decision procedures and he started to dedicate considerable time to programming.

In 1999 he joined the Department of Computer Science at the University of Manchester as Professor of Formal Methods. While chairing two program committees in 2002, he designed a simple conference management system to assist him. The system, now called EasyChair, was growing fast in popularity and has become the largest system of this kind in 2006. EasyChair now has over 1,100,000 users.

Andrei Voronkov is working at the University of Manchester and spends his time doing research in theorem proving and EasyChair-inspired areas, such as automatic code analysis and (secure) code generation, scientific document analysis, keyphrase extraction and constraint satisfaction problems related to conference management. He published over 150 papers in various areas of computing and math. He is currently working on changing the life of scientists forever and to the better with EasyChair.


EasyChair started in 2002 as a small collection of scripts helping the author to organise submission and reviewing for the conferences LPAR and CADE. Since then it has served over 30,000 conferences and 1,100,000 users. The system has over 240,000 lines of source code and automates paper submission, reviewing, proceedings generation, publishing, conference registration and conference programme generation. Several new modules are under development.

The design and architecture of every very large Web service is unique, and EasyChair is not an exception. This talk overviews design features of EasyChair, which may be interesting for the software engineering community:

(1) Highly agile development methodology
(2) Design centred around a small number of concepts
(3) Automatic generation of efficient and secure code
(4) An object caching technique eliminating mismatch between objects
and relational data
(5) Server-side generation of client-side code
(6) Automation of code management
(7) Light-weight code analysis
(8) Automatic generation of documentation
(9) Integrity constraint management

Nearly 50% of EasyChair code is now generated automatically. The high level of code management automation of EasyChair has allowed the author to increase the code size by around 50,000 lines in the last 12 months and also make the code easier to maintain and understand.

Dr. Magnus Larsson (ABB, Head of India Development Center)

Magnus is the head of ABBs development center in Bangalore, India. In Bangalore He work closely with ABB research and lead the implementation of the many of the research results into ABB products. Prior to his position in India, Magnus worked as manager at ABB Corporate Research in Västerås, Sweden where his department worked in the area of software architecture and user experience. Magnus is also engaged part time in the academia as an adjunct professor at Mälardalen University in the area of component-based software engineering and software architecture. Since 2007 Magnus has been invited to the Swedish foundation for strategic research, mainly to define new national research programs.

Experiences from developing industrial software systems with long lifecycles

Industrial systems very often control critical infrastructure like power plants or factories. A failure can have huge impact on the production from such a plant and impact both companies as well as society. Since the investment in industrial control systems for a plant or factory is big it is expected and requested that the systems can stay operational for a time period very often exceeding a decade or more. This talk highlights experiences from the research and development of such systems. Especially we look at automation of software engineering tasks to enhance developer productivity and how quality can be assured. The talk will also highlight the importance of understanding the domain and customer in order to make the best possible industrial software.

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