Once a week during the academic year, an invited speaker (from abroad, as well as from the Czech Republic) talks about his or her scientific work. Colloquium takes place at the Faculty of Informatics and is open to the scientific community. Lecture dates can be found in the programme. Tuesday 14.00 - 15.00, D2, FI MU, Botanická 68a

Colloquia programme with abstracts for the Spring 2018 semester

20. 2. 2018
ao. Univ.-Prof. Dipl.-Ing. Dr. Renate Motschnig, Faculty of Computer Science, University of Vienna
Transforming Communication in Leadership and Teamwork – Why should computer scientists care?
Abstrakt: Numerous sources report that the major reason for ICT-project failure are people- rather than technical issues. Thus, in order to improve project success, the most evident thing to do seems to care about the human factor in ICT projects. This influential “soft”, “fuzzy”, and “complex” factor, however, has tended to be overlooked, such that a number of research gaps at the interface between software engineering and human sciences became apparent and need to be filled. In this talk, my objective is to raise awareness of the salience of communication issues in ICT projects and illustrate, what can be done (or what computer scientists, in particular, can do) scientifically and practically, to fill the research/practice gaps and concurrently improve communication, leadership, and teamwork in ICT projects.
27. 2. 2018
asst. prof. Dimitris Sacharidis, Ph.D., Institute of Information Systems Engineering, TU Wien
Managing and Analyzing Big Geo-Social Data
Abstract: The widespread adoption of online social networks and location-aware mobile devices has resulted in a continuously increasing amount of published user-generated, geo-tagged content. Typical examples include tweets, check-ins, photo/video uploads, route posts (e.g., taxi rides, running trails). This big geo-social data essentially captures people's everyday interactions between the physical and digital world, and presents immense opportunities for creating added value to domains such as location-based services, smart cities, tourism. In this talk, we will present methods for efficiently handling and effectively analyzing large amounts of such data.
6. 3. 2018
RNDr. Robert Ganian, Ph.D., Algorithms and Complexity Group, TU Wien
Backdoors to Tractability for Constraint Satisfaction
Abstract: Constraint Satisfaction (CSP) is one of the most studied NP-complete problems, with numerous applications in both theory and practice and featuring its own dedicated conference. A significant amount of research has targeted the identification of classes of CSP instances which are polynomially tractable; this has led to celebrated results such as Schaefer's Dichotomy Theorem and Bulatov's recent proof of the Feder-Vardi Dichotomy Conjecture. Such classes of instances are often called "islands of tractability".

In this talk, we will present techniques and recent developments on solving CSP instances that lie outside of an island of tractability. In particular, we will use the notion of "backdoors" to capture the distance of an instance from an island of tractability and show how these backdoors can be exploited to obtain algorithms for CSP with good runtime guarantees.

13. 3. 2018
Atreyee Sinha, Ph.D., Computing & Information Sciences Department, Edgewood College, Madison, USA
How Do Computers See?
Abstract: Image classification is one of the most important Computer Vision problems being addressed by researchers around the world today. Classification is the task of labelling images with different predefined category labels. These category labels may be based on some low-level features such as color, texture or shape, but more often, they are based on high-level features such as semantic description, activity or objects present.

In this talk, I will present the different techniques and recent advances in image classification and retrieval with particular examples from different applications.

20. 3. 2018
RNDr. Vladimír Ulman, Ph.D., FI MU
Image analysis and synthesis in the context of cell tracking
Abstract: The present biomedical research increasingly relies on automated processing and analysis of large amount of image data. Two fundamental tasks in this area are automated cell segmentation and tracking. The task of cell segmentation is to split the image into several disjoint regions, each accurately outlining every single cell. The task of cell tracking is to link together the regions that represent the same cell in a time-lapse image sequence. This allows for time-resolved quantitative description of events and changes in displayed cell behaviour. Needless to say, the accuracy of the two tasks influences accuracy of the consequent biological analysis.

This talk will be focused on ways to evaluate performance quality of segmentation and tracking algorithms. In particular, I will review the evaluation protocol implemented in the Cell Tracking Challenge, an international benchmarking initiative that FI MU is part of, and identify current challenges in the field. Last but not least, I will give an outlook on a artificial image synthesis, which I see as a prospective way to foster the future development in the field.

27. 3. 2018
Ing. Vlad Popovici, M.Sc., Ph.D., PřF MU
Case studies in multimodal biomarker discovery
Abstrakt: High throughput genomic revolution started almost twenty years ago with the first in-house printed DNA chips. Since then, various technologies evolved, allowing the interrogation of the whole (human) genome, proteome, metabolome, etc., all producing large amounts of data. Bioinformatics tools and methods evolved to account for all these data modalities with the current bottleneck being the integration of these perspectives into a more comprehensive picture. In parallel and completely independent of bioinformatics, digital pathology also witnessed significant advances fuelled mostly by technological developments: slide scanners and computational infrastructure. However, both “classical” bioinformatics and digital pathology/bioimaging are often used to investigate the same biological phenomenon. It is, therefore, natural to attempt to combine these two seemingly incompatible fields with the hope of unveiling new connections between them. In this talk we will look at three examples of jointly mining the transcriptome and the histopathology images in the context of breast and colon cancers. We will also discuss the computational challenges one faces when working with these data.

• V. Popovici et al. Joint analysis of histopathology imaging features and gene expression in breast cancer. BMC Bioinformatics. 2016, 17(209).
• V. Popovici et al. Identification of "BRAF-Positive" Cases Based on Whole-Slide Image Analysis. Biomed Research International. 2017, issue: April 24
• V. Popovici et al. Image-based biomarkers for molecular subtypes of colorectal cancer. Bioinformatics. 2017, 33(13): 2002-2009

3. 4. 2018
doc. JUDr. Radim Polčák, Ph.D., PrF MU
Liability of Autonomous Robots
Abstract: In my note, I would like to discuss some legal issues related to development and use of autonomous robots. One of obvious problems is liability. Robots do not have legal personalities, so it is questionable who and for what should be liable when a robot causes harm (physical or other - e.g. through discriminatory decisions). In real life, this issue translates mostly to compliance and modelling insurance schemes that technically define basic parameters of respective markets. In addition, I would like to briefly discuss legal barriers to use of different types of data for development or operations of robots. In that regards, we need complex legal solutions (not necessarily legislation - e.g. contractual data trusts) to overcome complicated and differentiated legal obstacles that prevent pooling and use of data from different jurisdictions within the EU and offshore.
10. 4. 2018
Ing. Leonard Walletzký, Ph.D., FI MU
Can Cities be truly Smart? Findings from the Smart Service research group
Abstract: Two years ago the Smart Service research group was established at the Faculty of Informatics. During this short period of time, its members have become relevant part of the research community, focusing on new challenges in ICT applications (IoT, Smart Cities, Industry 4) within Service Science. The presentation will outline some of our main findings on the field of Smart City, focused on the comparison of academic approaches with industrial practice.
17. 4. 2018
doc. Fotios Liarokapis, Ph.D., FI MU
Virtual Reality Assessment for Examining Functional Neurological Symptoms
Abstract: Functional neurological symptoms (FNS) are somatic symptoms that still remain poorly understood. Their diagnosis is made by exclusion of organic cause and therefore does not provide any specific cues for the subsequent treatment. Virtual reality (VR) seems to be mature enough to be experimentally tested as a potential therapeutic intervention for the functional neurological disorders. Biofeedback is the process of gaining greater awareness of many physiological functions primarily using instruments that provide information on the activity of those same systems, with a goal of being able to manipulate them at will. Some of the processes that can be controlled include brainwaves, muscle tone, skin conductance, heart rate and pain perception.

This presentation will evaluate immersive virtual reality as a potential therapeutic tool for a treatment of functional neurological symptoms. The first part will examine the effects of immersive virtual reality intervention on changes in autonomic arousal in FNS (in both healthy subjects and patients) by introducing emotional stress. The effect of immersion manipulation on changes in emotional reactivity to stress inducing stimuli is assessed by measuring skin conductance and heart rate variability. The second part will examine how biofeedback affects immersive virtual reality intervention on effective connectivity patterns in patients with FNS.

Short biography: Dr. Fotis Liarokapis is an Associate Professor at the Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) Laboratory, Masaryk University, Czech Republic. His research interests include: virtual reality, augmented reality, brain-computer interfaces and serious games. He has contributed to more than 100 refereed publications and has more than 2200 citations (h-index: 23 and i10-index: 43). He has secured more than €1,000,000 from a number of national and international research projects. Finally, he is the co-founder of VS-Games conference and has organised numerous conferences and journal special issues. For more information visit: http://www.fi.muni.cz/~liarokap/,
24. 4. 2018
Kateřina Falk, Ph.D., Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf, Dresden, Germany
Astrophysics and fusion research with high power lasers
The most powerful laser systems in the world and their uses
Abstract: The talk will be about speaker research on dense plasmas using some of the most powerful lasers in the world. At the first an outline of the field will be given, including an introduction of some of the best laser laboratories and about applications in laboratory astrophysics and fusion technology. Thanks to the development of high power and high energy lasers, scientists are now able to generate extreme states of matter, accelerate particles and simulate many astrophysical phenomena including the interiors of planets, supernova explosions, gigantic astrophysical jets or even create antimatter. By dynamically compressing matter, lasers can create exotic phase transitions like the diamond rain inside Neptune or formation of rare structures like londsdaleite, which is harder than diamond. One of the most important applications of this research is an efficient generation of clean energy using thermonuclear fusion, the same reactions that power all stars including our Sun.
Short biography: graduated MSci Physics, Imperial College London, D.Phil Atomic & Laser Physics, University of Oxford postdoc: Los Alamos National Laboratory, Plasma Physics (2012-2014) Senior Scientist: ELI Beamlines, FZÚ, AV ČR (2015-2017) Helmholtz Young Investigator Group Leader: Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (March 2018 – present) Awards: Neuron Impulz 2017; FY12 LAAP Award, Sep 2012 - Los Alamos National Laboratory, Sep 2012; SET for BRITAIN 2011 - Bronze Award in Physical Sciences (Physics) for early-career research scientists, Parliamentary and Scientific Committee and Institute of Physics, United Kingdom
15. 5. 2018
prof. Ing. Lukáš Sekanina, Ph.D., FIT VUT
Approximate multiplication
Abstract: Approximate computing has been established as a promising approach to address energy efficiency of computer systems. Much attention has been paid to the design of approximate arithmetic circuits, where the approximate multipliers play a key role. In this context, this talk deals with three topics. (i) Automated design methods for approximate multipliers. (ii) Formal verification techniques for approximate multipliers (the error analysis, in particular). (iii) Employing approximate multipliers in selected applications such as convolutional neural networks and image filters.
22. 5. 2018
Mouzhi Ge, Ph.D., FI MU
Recommender System Research in E-Commerce
Abstract: Over the last decade, recommender systems have been widely applied in e-commerce, for example, video recommendations in Youtube, book recommendation on Amazon, and movie recommendation on Netflix. Recommender systems are developed to help users find relevant products that may interest them. The goal of recommender systems is to reduce the information overload and provide personalized recommendations for users. In this talk, I will discuss the state-of-the-art research of recommender system in E-Commerce, which includes rationale and algorithms inside the recommender black box, important features and evaluations in recommender systems. Finally, a real-world food recommender system project in E-Commerce will be described and demonstrated to show how to construct and evaluate the recommender system in practice, as well as possible challenges that are related to the food recommender systems.
25. 9. 2018
RNDr. Vít Rusňák, Ph.D., FI MU
Interactive tabletop systems: A tool and its applications
Abstract: Interactive tabletop systems are intensively studied in the HCI and CSCW fields for almost two decades. They combine computer system with horizontally placed multi-touch display(s) and resemble office desks or conference tables. They are beneficial especially in co-located collaborative scenarios where users can work with digital-only or digital-physical content naturally. In the last couple of years, their technology matured and interactive tabletops become widely used in multiple domains from pre-school education to military operations.

In this talk, we are going to present the area of interactive tabletops from the three perspectives. First, we will overview the fundamental technologies driving the interactive tabletops and their design. Next, we will present several applications of interactive tabletops in computer-supported cooperative scenarios and computer-based learning to demonstrate their pros and cons. Finally, we will outline current research challenges in the field.