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issue 9 Summer 2013 newsletter of the awareness proactive initiative

awareness newsletter

News from the Awareness Co-ordination Action project

AWASS 2013

Awareness Summer School FP7 FET Awareness projects: ASCENS Autonomic Service-Component Ensembles EPICS Engineering Proprioception in Computing Systems RECOGNITION Relevance and cognition for self-awareness in a content-centric Internet SAPERE Self-aware Pervasive Service Ecosystems Also supporting: SYMBRION Symbiotic Evolutionary Robot Organisms (funded by PerAda) CoCoRo Collective Cognitive Robots (funded by FP7 ICT) Organic Computing Initiative (funded by Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, DFG)

Awareness is a Future and Emerging Technologies Proactive Initiative funded by the European Commission under FP7

Awareness at AINA The Awareness initiative was present at the 27th IEEE International Conference on Advanced Information Networking and Applications (AINA-2013) which was held in Barcelona, Spain, from March 25 to 28. It was a chance to promote the activities of the initiative, to gather material for the AWARE Research Agenda, and to suggest interesting collaborations The conference was very broad, so we decided to focus on some specific sessions that can be more interesting for Awareness topics, to promote activities. In particular, we addressed two sessions and a workshop: Agents and Intelligent Computing; Scalable, Intelligent, and Autonomic Computing; the First International Workshop on Informatics for Intelligent Context-Aware Enterprise Systems. Copies of the Awareness newsletter were available at the conference, and many participants enjoyed them. video-opinions/

Awareness international research exchanges Adib M. Monzer Habbal from InterNetWorks Research Lab, School of Computing, Universiti Utara in Malaysia is visiting Prof. Giovanna Di Marzo Serugendo, and Dr. Jose Luis Fernandez from UniversitÊ Genève in Switzerland this summer. Adib Monzer was a participant at the Awareness Summer School held in Edinburgh in 2012 where he was introduced to Giovanna Di Marzo and Jose Luis Fernandez working on the SAPERE project and he was keen in applying bio-inspired self-organizing mechanisms to opportunistic networks. The main aim of his research visit is to consider how self-aware mechanisms can enhance routing protocols and create opportunistic networks for improved performance. Dr Marcus Endler from Pontificial Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro (PUC-Rio) in Brazil visiting Dr Nikola Serbedzija at Fraunhofer FOKUS in Berlin, Germany in September 2013 for 10 days. The purpose of the visit is exchange ideas and develop a plan for the future collaboration in the areas of context awareness and self-adaptive systems. This collaboration shall be defined at several levels, including purely researchoriented activities, software development and testing, as well as deployment of software tools and middleware in real-world applications (e.g., Smart Cities and Green Computing).


Researchers! Add your details to the Self-Awareness in Autonomic Systems research infographic. Find the link to the interactive visualisation here:

Dr Tobias Becker from Imperial College London, a

member of the EPiCS project, was invited to participate in collaborative discussions with Professor Jeong-A Lee of the Computer Systems Lab, Chosun University at Gwangju in Korea in June 2013. The research visit considered modelling and validation of perceptive selfaware systems with autonomous reconfiguration. The Chosen University team has considerable experience in reconfigurable fault-tolerant computing and wanted to explore the options for utilizing these skills in application specific self-aware systems.

Awareness Workshop at SASO

3rd Awareness Workshop on Challenges for Achieving Selfawareness in Autonomic Systems 13th September 2013 at SASO 2013, Philadelphia, USA. The third AWARENESS workshop@SASO has been organised in consultation with the Awareness Projects. The projects have each contributed a range of topics to be addressed by the workshop. We look forward to a stimulating workshop which spans the breadth of topics relevant to self-awareness in autonomic computing, providing exciting opportunities for cross-collaboration and cross-discussion of both the challenges faced and their proposed solutions.

Overview As technology continues to rapidly advance, the management of systems becomes increasingly more difficult: systems are likely to be composed of heterogeneous devices, the topology of the system can dynamically change to device mobility; components of the system are probably programmed with different models, and emergent behaviours can occur, not pre-programmed into the system. On top of this, users of systems expect 24/7 reliability, high levels of security, and privacy of their data. The scale of the challenge imposed by the necessity to manage these systems is such that control can no longer be devolved to a human. Systems must be able to manage themselves, delivering high-quality of service while at the same time optimising overall performance and resource usage.

Invited Speaker

Thomas Schmickl

Social Implications of SASO Systems and Technologies

My research is focused on the phenomena of biological self-organization (SO) and swarm intelligence (SI). My main aim in these fields of science is to investigate how a higher degree of order and collective decisions are achieved by a high number of loosely joined subunits. This research is important for technical applications, because the mechanisms behind SO and SI are based on networks of nodes that exchange information. By filtering and processing this information collectively and frequently, these systems are very robust and are simultaneously very flexible. Noisy information can be handled by these systems as well as sudden perturbations. These properties of dynamic systems are of high relevance for technical applications (sensor networks, communication networks, …). I am interested in the functionality of these systems (How are they composed? How do they work?) as well as in the history and in the biological reasoning of these systems (How and why did they evolve?). Thus, the main questions that govern my scientific research are those that are commonly summarized by the field “Artificial Life”.

The Awareness Coordination Action is pleased to sponsor a panel discussion on social implications of SASO systems and technologies on Thursday, 12 September 2012 at the SASO 2013 conference (Seventh IEEE International Conference on Self-Adaptive, SelfOrganising Systems being held in Philadelphia, USA from 9-13 September, Chaired by Jeremy Pitt, from Imperial College London, the panelists include Peppo Valetto, Drexel University, USA Rene Doursat, GMU, USA Jeffrey Wilcox, Lockheed Martin Corp, USA Mihaela Ulieru, The Impact Institute, USA The discussion will consider adaptive systems with emergent properties, exemplified by machine learning, autonomic computing, and self-organisation which are making the transition from laboratory and field trials to

fully-fledged deployment. However, many aspects of adaptive and autonomic systems found in things like mobile networks or swarm robotics seem to be primarily ‘hidden’ to the user. The aim of this panel discussion is to consider whether SASO systems are destined to be forever closed to human involvement; or if not, what will be the nature of ‘human-SASO system interaction’? Moreover, what are some of the social implications of these SASO-systems? And what impact might they have when adaptive systems are reasoning about qualitative such as legal or organisational rules, health and wellbeing, environmental issues, dispute resolution etc, issues of great human concern. The Awareness Coordination Action will present a 15 minute video entitled The Computer After Me, where Jeremy Pitt and Rebecca Mileham discuss the social implications of self-aware, super-intelligent computers.

Social Implications of SASO Systems and Technologies


the second

Awareness Summer School

Case Studies A total of four case studies were available, and lead by experienced researchers in that particular area.

Smart Cameras and Robot Swarms Lukas Esterle presented a case study on computational self-awareness in smart camera networks, followed by Mark Read who introduced a case study on self-awareness in underwater search and rescue swarm robots. The case study introduced by Matthias Hölzl and Annabelle Klarl focused on robot swarms as ensembles of cooperating components. Finally, Michele Loretti presented a case study on ensemble-oriented programming of self-adaptive systems. Students had been divided into five teams by the organizers based upon the expertise and experience, and these teams were asked to indicate their preference for each of the case studies. A good coverage of the case study emerged. As a final part of the program on the first day, Martin Wirsing gave a lecture on “Systematically Engineering Ensembles” which was partially based on the experience obtained during the ASCENS EU project. The day ended with a welcome reception in the courtyard of the Summer school venue.


The AWASS 2013 Summer School took place in the beautiful city of Lucca, Italy from June 24th till June 28th and was attended by 25 students, all working on their PhD studies. The participants came from a wide variety of countries, including Germany, the UK, Italy, the Netherlands, Switzerland, and even one participant from Algeria and had a wide range of backgrounds. During the first day, the students were informed about the precise program during the Summer School by the VU AWARE CA team consisting of Gusz Eiben and Mark Hoogendoorn as well as the local organizers Alberto Lluch Lafuente and Andrea Vandin. After an introductory round, the case studies were introduced. The case studies played a central role during the Summer School as these were the team projects students would work on for a substantial amount of time in which they really apply knowledge about self-awareness.

The second day kicked off with a lecture by Mark Read on drawing inspiration of the immune system to provide better-quality engineering solutions. The students were then split up according to their case study and attended a tutorial on the software and techniques that were deemed appropriate for the case study, followed by the first steps in the design of their solution for the case study. The afternoon was reserved for the PhD forum during which seven PhD students presented their ideas for their PhD work and obtained feedback from an experienced researcher that was assigned to them.

Computational self-awareness The third day had two lectures scheduled, in the morning Peter Lewis gave a lecture on the types of

computational self-awareness and how we might implement them. In the afternoon Alan Winfield gave an invited talk on why robots may need to be self-aware before we can really trust them. In between the students worked on their case studies with the help of their mentors. In the evening the whole group took a walking tour through Lucca, climbed two of the many towers seen in Lucca and enjoyed a very nice social dinner in a restaurant located on the old city wall.

Morphogenetic Engineering On Thursday (the fourth day) Rene Doursat gave a lecture on Morphogenetic Engineering, followed by team work. In the afternoon, AWARE CA session was organized by Giacomo Cabri to discuss the research agenda of the general theme of awareness.

Finally, on the last day the students wrapped up their projects and were asked to present their results in such a way that they would convince investors from industry to invest money in their ideas. The results shown by the groups were impressive, especially given the limited amount of time they had to work on the project.


Bilateral research exchange:

MIT (USA) and the Politecnico di Milano The topic of “Self-Aware Prospectives in the Design of Novel Computing Systems” drove a bilateral research exchange between the CARBON group at MIT (USA) and the DRESD/CHANGE group from the Politecnico di Milano (ITALY). It was sponsored in part by the Awareness Coordination Action and was held at MIT in Cambridge, Boston in May 2013. The aim of the international research exchange was to explore the hardware strengths presented by the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence laboratory (CSAIL) at MIT led by Professor Srini Devadas of the Computation Structures Group and some innovative software technologies presented by the 16 persons attending from the Politecnico di Milano led by Professor Marco Santambrogio. Awareness supported the travel costs of seven PhD students who presented their work to MIT colleagues. The research exchange allowed for collaboration on different topics, including a group of individuals from PoliMi working closely with Dr Jason Miller and colleagues on Graphite, a novel distributed parallel simulator for multi-core architecture. Professor Marco Santambrogio presented some reconfigurable computing aspects from the DRESD project and described adaptive operating systems from the CHANGE project, and a series of other relevant topics were covered as the idea was to explore different constituent parts that can work together in self-aware systems. Approximately 25 staff and students spent time together over the week culminating in a two-day workshop to present their ideas.

Collective Social Awareness and Relevance The workshop is being held in conjunction with the Third International Conference on Social Computing and its Applications, and the Third International Conference on Cloud and Green Computing, in Karlsruhe Germany, on September 30th to October 2nd 2013. This workshop focuses on the emerging topic of collective awareness in pervasive ICT systems, which can be applied to harness human cognitive functionality and social relationships to provide relevant and timely content and computation to the user. Humans are one of the few species that exhibit self-awareness; the ability to think about one’s own thoughts, manage one’s own behaviour and to action and respond to stimuli based on secondary and cumulative effects. Such self- awareness represents a higher state of consciousness that allows humans to reason, motivate action, influence situations, impact upon others as well as derive knowledge and understanding. It is possible to extend awareness to ICT by harnessing human cognitive principles and the implicit and explicit relationships captured within social networks between people and devices. This workshop seeks to develop the concept of cognitive self and collective- awareness at the device, at the artifact and at the system levels as a fundamental property of pervasive ICT systems.


EPiCS Video Student Contest Everything you need to know about self-awareness in technical systems Compose a self-contained, short video explaining self-awareness accessible to a broad audience

WHEN? Submission Deadline Extension: August 31, 2013

€500, €300 and €200 cash prizes for the top three videos Accepted videos will be promoted via the EPiCS video channel on vimeo. epics

Awareness sponsor invited speaker at SRCS13 Awareness Project EPiCS are running the 2nd Workshop on Self-Awareness in Reconfigurable Computing Systems (SRCS’13) on 5 Sept in Porto. We are sponsoring the invited speaker:

Prof. Mike Hinchey from the Irish Software Engineering Research Centre (Lero), University of Limerick.

Building Intelligent Space Exploration Missions Mike Hinchey is Director of Lero-the Irish Software Engineering Research Centre, a multi-institutional research centre funded by Science Foundation Ireland, and Professor of Software Engineering at University of Limerick, Ireland. He was previously Director of the NASA Software Engineering Laboratory at Goddard Space Flight Center and continues to serve as a NASA expert consultant. He is editor-in-chief of Innovations in Systems and Software Engineering: a NASA Journal (Springer) and is currently a Vice President of IFIP and Chair of the IFIP Technical Assembly. Full details of the workshop available here:

From Cognitive Activity to Artificial Self Awareness A workshop entitled “From Cognitive Activity to Artificial Self Awareness” was held at the Centre for the Study of Complex Dynamics in Florence on 18 June 2013 to help disseminate some of the findings from the RECOGNITION project, a multi-national research project as part of the FET Proactive Initiative on Awareness. The emphasis was on cognitive science, social psychology, socio-physics, and computer science, since the target of the RECOGNITION project has been the development of a cognitive inspired model to equip the self awareness at the level of the ICT systems. The workshop was partly sponsored by the Awareness Coordination Action, and was organized by Dr Franco Bagnoli and Dr Andrea Guazzini from Centre for the Study of Complex Dynamics (CSDC) at the University of Florence. Three invited speakers provided a significant dimension to the workshop discussion: Prof Steven Sloman from Brown University (USA) Prof Guillaume Deffuant from IRSTEA (France) Dr Josè Ramasco from the University of the Balearic Islands (Spain)


The Awareness Coordination Action project provides a collaborative environment for research into self-awareness in autonomic systems, supporting the network of researchers and engaging with a wider scientific and technological audience. Awareness reaches out to a diverse, multidisciplinary scientific community that researches self-aware autonomic systems. As technology continues to rapidly advance, the management of systems becomes more difficult, and they must increasingly be able to manage themselves implying that they must be self-aware. Achieving truly self-aware systems is of interest to almost everyone in society as it will have technical, social and economic impacts. The FET funded projects that we support are:

FP7 FET Awareness projects: ASCENS Autonomic Service-Component Ensembles EPICS Engineering Proprioception in Computing Systems RECOGNITION Relevance and cognition for self-awareness in a contentcentric Internet SAPERE Self-aware Pervasive Service Ecosystems

Also supporting: SYMBRION Symbiotic Evolutionary Robot Organisms (funded by PerAda) CoCoRo Collective Cognitive Robots (funded by FP7 ICT) Organic Computing Initiative (funded by Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, DFG)

What the Awareness project does: Organises summer schools and virtual lectures to train the researchers of the future and for interdisciplinary knowledge exchange. Arranges workshops relevant to the self-awareness community of researchers. Presents public showcase events. Creates widely accessible publications, and training materials for use in teaching and outreach work. Provides funding for research exchanges. Disseminates the research output of our supported FET funded projects. Shapes the Reseach Agenda of the future: this will gather opinion relating to the Awareness Initiative from expert researchers and scientists.

Awareness is a Future and Emerging Technologies Proactive Initiative funded by the European Commission under FP7 2010-2013

Awareness Newsletter 9  

The newsletter of the Awareness Coordination Action project