Wednesday 24 November 13:00-16:00 Ballroom


During the past few decades our understanding of the fundamental information processes of the living world has progressed with giant leaps. During the same period of time information sciences and technologies have produced dazzling breakthroughs. These developments have fueled the emergence of new interdisciplinary areas of science and inspired novel applications for the benefit of citizens, industries and societies.

Today scientists are actively employing wetware, hardware and software methodologies to uncover the basic principles and mechanisms governing the behavior of living organisms at molecular, cellular, organism and population levels. Some scientists study how to do biology with computers whilst others are trying to do computing with biology. The prospects of possible future applications are breathtakingly vast.

The purpose of the session is to give a visionary overview of the biological frontier and the potential areas of convergence and impact on emergent Information Society Technologies. The speakers will highlight the main axes of development reaching beyond conventional software and hardware implementations and drawing its inspiration from concepts found in living organisms. They will debate the future visions and ethical constraints of these brave new information technologies that prospect and exploit the areas on the wet frontier and beyond.


Moderator: Prof. Bill O’Riordan (UK)

Introduction by: Simon Bensasson, Head of Unit, Future and Emerging Technologies, European Commission, Information Society Directorate General

  • Prof. Teuvo Kohonen (FI) Helsinki University of Technology: Artificial abstraction (.doc, 21kb)
  • Prof. Aaron Sloman (UK), University of Birmingham: Deep and shallow models of motivation and emotion (.doc, 32kb)
  • Dr. Chris Winter (UK), CyberLife Technology Ltd: Artificial organisms: Blending biology and computers
  • Dr Giacomo Indiveri (CH), University of Z├╝rich: Neuromorphic engineering: from neurons to transistors
  • Prof. Uri Sivan (IL) TECHNION Israel Institute of Technology: Self assembly of molecular scale electronics by biotechnology
  • Mr. Peter Warren (UK) Technology Editor, Scotland on Sunday: The Frankenstein factor


Pekka Karp (Pekka.Karp@cec.eu.int)

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