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Bulletin #2, September 2008
Presidential addressDear ECCAI society member,
during ECAI in Patras I was elected new president of ECCAI by the ECCAI board -- a job I happily accepted for several reasons. First of all, I feel, of course, very honoured to be given the chance to become active for European AI in this new role. Secondly, my predecessor, Werner Horn, did a perfect job and left ECCAI in excellent shape. He deserves a big Thanks from all of us (and I am sure I will ring him up quite often for his advice). ECCAI finances are solid; the international standing of European AI is excellent (there are several areas where Europe is clearly having a lead); ECAI regularly attracts a high number of participants and highest quality submissions from all over the world; ACAI has established itself as a highly valuable event for PhD students and young researchers; AICom is continuously gaining reputation and readership. All this, of course, does not mean there isn't much to do for me. Here are some of the issues I would like to focus on. (1) There are several European countries with excellent AI research which are not yet ECCAI members (e.g. Poland and Cyprus). I would like to encourage researchers from these countries to build AI societies and join us. It is worth it! (2) I got the impression some of our societies, especially from Eastern Europe, feel somewhat "underrepresented" within ECCAI. I would certainly like to increase participation at ECCAI events, submissions and also ECAI/ACAI bids from these countries. (3) Transparent procedures are highly important for an organization like ECCAI. Wherever we can increase transparency we will do so. (4) After its internationalization and corresponding name change to Association of the Advancement of AI, AAAI has become even more of a competitor. Of course, the competition is friendly, many of us (including myself) are members of both an ECCAI society and AAAI, and I do not see much of a risk that AAAI will once rule the entire AI world. Still, to strengthen ECCAI I think it is important to establish close links and partnerships with AI societies, e.g. in Asia, and also with AAAI itself (for instance, I could imagine that AAAI and ECCAI agree on reduced conference fees for members of the respective partner). So I guess there will be enough to do, besides the more regular ECCAI business (bids, fellows, dissertation award and the like).
Let me take this opportunity to thank also Ulises Cortés who served on the board for the last 6 years. He put in a tremendous amount of effort, in particular as the person responsible for the dissertation award, certainly one of the most time consuming jobs a board member can get (this is why we are currently forming a selection committee headed by Toby Walsh; it will consist of 6 people covering different areas of AI).
Finally, let me welcome the two new board members, Grigoris Antoniou and Patrick Doherty, both very well-known in our community, experienced researchers and organizers. Looking forward to working with you!
With ACAI 2009 in Belfast, ECAI 2010 in Lisbon and ECAI 2012 in Montpellier we have excellent events ahead of us. I think it is just exciting to be part of European AI these days. Let us all keep it rockin'!
New ECCAI fellowsThe ECCAI Fellows program has been started in 1999 to recognize individuals who have made significant, sustained contributions to the field of artificial intelligence (AI) in Europe. Nine ECCAI fellows have been nominated in 2008 and celebrated during ECAI'08:
To get more information on the ECCAI fellows, have a look here : https://eccai.org/fellow.php?sort=year
|14 - 18 Sep 2008||ICAPS'08||International Conference on Automated Planning and Scheduling, Sydney (Australia)|
|16 - 19 Sep 2008||KR 2008||11th International Conference on Principles of Knowledge Representation and Reasoning, Sydney (Australia)|
|19 - 22 Oct 2008||ICAI-08||International Conference on Advanced Intelligence, Bejing (China)|
|30 - 31 Oct 2008||RuleML-2008||International RuleML Symposium on Rule Interchange and Applications, Orlando, Florida (USA)|
|02 - 04 Oct 2008||SETN ´08||5th Hellenic Conference on Artificial Intelligence, Syros (Greece)|
|09 - 11 Dec 2008||AI-08||28th SGAI International Conference on Artificial Intelligence, Cambridge (UK)|
Computer technology is leading to sweeping changes in how we reason about groups in diverse cultures. This special issue features articles on computational models for cultural dynamics and on applications that employ such models to achieve such goals as understanding other cultures, recovering from conflicts and disasters, and reducing terrorism.Also in this issue: video game characters, the smart power grid, robots and war, Semantic Web agents, and more
The following articles are available without an electronic subscription:
A Letter from the Editor
Why It Matters(pdf)
James Hendler and Jie Bao
Computer science research and technology can make a real difference in the world. The recent earthquake in China provides one example.
Computational Cultural Dynamics
A Computational Approach to Etiquette: Operationalizing Brown and Levinson's Politeness Model (pdf)
Christopher A. Miller, Peggy Wu, and Harry B. Funk
A central source of cultural differences is the communication of politeness, which can powerfully affect perception and behavior. A computational adaptation of a universal theory of human politeness could reduce software development costs and increase an intelligent agent's behavior repertoire.
Histories & Futures Cassandra or False Prophet of Doom: AI Robots and War (pdf)
The possible future deployment of autonomous fighting systems raises serious questions. For example, will these systems be able to discriminate between innocents and combatants? What are the responsibilities of AI researchers embarking on such projects?