2012 conferences
Hacking Life


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Hacking Life
February 22–23, 2012
San Jose, California

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field trip
February 24, 2012

Thinking, Fast and Slow
by Daniel Kahneman

The Children of the Sky
by Vernor Vinge

Conference schedule
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Topics include:
• Neural computing machines
• Self-generating software
• Reengineering systems
• Bio-based energy
• Biology-inspired analogs
• Biomimetic models
• Direct neural I/O
• Artificial life
• Synthetic biology
• Democratizing biology

conference overview
Quite possibly the next killer app for informatics, biology will dramatically shape the future of IT. Many of the stunning advances in biology have come from improvements in computer technology. Now, IT is starting to leverage new biological discoveries and inventions. This conference will shed light on interplay between IT and biology that's likely to produce a seismic shift in the computing landscape—indeed, to change every aspect of our enterprises and our society.

Many of our organizational hierarchies are surprisingly similar to those we see in biological systems. Algorithms, inspired by epidemiology, can be used for pattern recognition, including intrusion and botnet detection. Biology's impact on large-scale computing, information diffusion, and content-centric networking will lead to new ways of thinking about the design and resilience of information systems. The accelerating pace of acquisition of new knowledge in the biological sciences is placing unprecedented demands on computation and information sciences, and is emerging as a driving force behind technological innovations in IT.

We'll look at some of the nontraditional applications of bioengineering, including interfaces between biological and mechanical systems. The blurring of electronics (hard and rigid) with biology (soft and elastic) will give us better sensory devices, a more thorough understanding of how our brains operate, and increasingly sophisticated neural interfaces. Are we on the verge of memory prosthetic devices and more "natural" man-machine-brain interfaces? We might see the day when biology-based transistors enable us to use our own bodies as computing and communications devices.

Inspirations from biology will allow for the development of self-replicating genetic programming that can help us make better use of our computers and devices. DNA-based artificial neural networks could well mimic our brains in their ability to recognize what things are, with implications as diverse as the development of true AI. Biofuels hold the promise of replacing fossil fuels with a renewable source of energy that does not contribute to an increase in atmospheric CO
2. Biomimetic principles may become models for software development. Hacking life has as many possibilities as life itself.

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Partial list of speakers
Dr. Adam Arkin, Director, Physical Biosciences Division, E.O. Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Dr. Lawrence Bonassar, Associate Professor, Department of Biomedical Engineering, Cornell University
Dr. Rhiju Das, Assistant Professor of Biochemistry and Physics, Stanford University School of Medicine
Dr. Jonathan Eisen, Professor, University of California, Davis Genome Center
Mr. Federico Faggin, President, Federico and Elvia Faggin Foundation
Dr. William Haseltine, Founder and President, ACCESS Health International
Mr. John Hockenberry, Journalist, PRI/WNYC Public Radio International
Ms. Jini Kim, Founder, NunaHealth
Dr. Kendall Lee, Director, Neural Engineering Laboratories, Mayo Clinic
Mr. John Markoff, Senior Writer, The New York Times
Dr. Robert Murphy, Director, Ray and Stephanie Lane Center for Computational Biology, Carnegie Mellon University
Mr. Carey Nachenberg, Symantec Fellow, Symantec
Dr. Miguel Nicolelis, Co-Director, Center for Neuroengineering, Duke University
Mr. Josh Perfetto, Co-Founder, Seqify
Dr. Andrew Phillips, Head, Bio Computation Group, Microsoft Research
Dr. Larry Smarr, Founding Director, California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology (Calit2)
Dr. Vernor Vinge, Author

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Conference Schedule
Tuesday, February 21:
6:30 pm, Welcome Reception/Dinner (7:00 pm)
Wednesday, February 22: 8:30 am–4:30 pm, Conference Day 1
5:00 pm, Computer History Museum Tour
7:00 pm, Computer History Museum Reception/Dinner
Thursday, February 23: 8:30 am–4:00 pm, Conference Day 2
7:00 pm, Off-Site Dinner
Friday, February 24: 8:30 am–1:00 pm, Field Trip to H-STAR

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