IEEE Toronto Section


Archive for the ‘Events’ Category

Big Data

Tuesday, February 21st, 2017

Monday March 6, 2017 at 12:00 p.m. Dr. Ann Cavoukian will be presenting “Big Data”.

Day & Time: Monday, March 6th, 2017
12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m.

Speaker: Dr. Ann Cavoukian

Location: Room TRS2164 (8th Floor of the Building)
575 Bay Street (Entrance at 55 Dundas Street West), Ryerson University

Contact: Dr. Maryam Davoudpour

Organizers: WIE, Measurement/Instrumentation-Robotics, Magnetics, Computer Science Department of Ryerson University

Biography: Dr. Ann Cavoukian is recognized as one of the world’s leading privacy experts. She is presently the Executive Director of Ryerson University’s Privacy and Big Data Institute. Dr. Cavoukian served an unprecedented three terms as the Information & Privacy Commissioner of Ontario, Canada. There she created Privacy by Design, a framework that seeks to proactively embed privacy into design, thereby achieving the strongest protection possible. In 2010, International Privacy Regulators unanimously passed a Resolution recognizing Privacy by Design as an international standard. Since then, PbD has been translated into 39 languages.

Dr. Cavoukian has received numerous awards recognizing her leadership in privacy, most recently as of the Top 100 Leaders in Identity (January, 2017).

Health Apps by Design: A Reference Architecture for Mobile Apps for Health

Tuesday, February 21st, 2017

Monday February 27, 2017 at 12:00 p.m. Dr. Karim Keshavjee will be presenting “Health Apps by Design: A Reference Architecture for Mobile Apps for Health”.

Day & Time: Monday, February 27th, 2017
12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m.

Speaker: Dr. Karim Keshavjee

Location: Room TRS2164 (8th Floor of the Building)
575 Bay Street (Entrance at 55 Dundas Street West), Ryerson University

Contact: Dr. Maryam Davoudpour

Organizers: WIE, Measurement/Instrumentation-Robotics, Magnetics, Computer Science Department of Ryerson University

Biography: Karim is a Family Physician with over 25 years of experience designing, developing and implementing Electronic Health Records/Electronic Medical Records and helping clinicians use them effectively. Currently working on architecting a scalable and sustainable technology system that will help us prevent diabetes cost-effectively. Diabetes prevention is feasible, but is not cost-effective. I believe an engineered solution could change things dramatically.

An Introduction to UAV Regulations

Monday, February 6th, 2017

There has been an exponential surge in the use of the small unmanned aerial vehicles (sUAV), also known as drones, ranging from recreational to professional and research activities. However, whether used as a great toy to record spectacular images from the air or a great tool for activities such as mapping, construction or emergency response, the sUAV can crash or collide with other objects, or can cause privacy concerns. This is why most countries regulate the operation of sUAS to mitigate the risks from potential inflight accidents with manned aircrafts that operate in the same airspace, collisions with vehicles and power lines, crashes in populated areas, or privacy violations that can raise trespassing and security concerns. The presentation will address various regulations and operational aspects we need to be aware of for the safe and legal operation of a sUAV.

Speaker: Costas Armenakis, PhD, PEng

Registration: Registration is free, and is open to IEEE members and non-members, but space is limited. Please RSVP through the registration website or contact Kyarash Shahriari / Dante Bolatti.

Remote Access: This meeting is accessible through IEEE WebEx service for those who may not be able to attend. Please contact Kyarash Shahriari or Dante Bolatti for more details.

Day & Time: Tuesday, February 28th, 2017
3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Location: York University
4700 Keele Street
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Building: Petrie Science & Engineering Building (building #17)
Room Number: 422

Contacts: Kyarash Shahriari
Dante Bolatti

Dr. Costas Armenakis is an Associate Professor and Program Director of Geomatics Engineering at the Lassonde School of Engineering, York University, Toronto, Canada. He has over 30 years of research experience in photogrammetry, remote sensing and GIS working on the acquisition, handling, processing and management of geo-spatial data and information from terrestrial, aerial and space-borne image sensors. His research interests are in the areas of photogrammetric engineering and remote sensing mapping, focusing on unmanned mobile sensing and mapping systems and the use of unmanned aerial vehicle systems for geomatics. He is an ISPRS Fellow and former President of the ISPRS Technical Commission IV on Digital Mapping and GeoDatabases. Currently he serves as Co-Chair of the ISPRS ICWG I/II: UAS & Small Multi-Sensor Platforms: Concepts & Applications.

Micro-Scale Robots: Magnetic Actuation for Wireless Manipulation

Saturday, February 4th, 2017

Monday February 13, 2017 at 12:00 p.m. Dr. Diller, Assistant Professor in the department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering at the University of Toronto, will be presenting “Micro-Scale Robots: Magnetic Actuation for Wireless Manipulation”.

Speaker: Dr. Diller
Assistant Professor, Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, University of Toronto

Day & Time: Monday, February 13th, 2017
12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Location: Room TRS2164, 575 Bay Street (Entrance at 55 Dundas Street West)
Ryerson University (TRS2164 is on the 8th floor of the building)

Organizer: WIE, Measurement/Instrumentation-Robotics, Magnetics, Computer Science Department of Ryerson University

Abstract: Micro-scale mobile robots can physically access small spaces in a versatile and non-invasive manner. Such microrobots under 1 mm in size have potential unique applications for object manipulation, local sensing and cargo delivery in healthcare, microfluidics and advanced materials fabrication. These devices are powered and controlled remotely using externally-applied magnetic fields for motion in 2D and 3D. This talk will introduce our experimental work in micro-manipulation using single and teams of these devices.

Biography: Dr. Diller is an Assistant Professor in the department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering at the University of Toronto. He received his B.S. and M.S. in Mechanical Engineering at Case Western Reserve University, and Ph.D. at Carnegie Mellon University in 2013. His current work focuses on fabrication and control relating to remote actuation of micro-scale devices using magnetic fields, medical robotics, smart materials, and swimming at small size scales.

Improving Communication Skills for Engineers

Saturday, February 4th, 2017

Wednesday February 22, 2017 at 6:30 p.m. IEEE Toronto Section’s Industry Relations Committee and Young Professionals Affinity Group will be hosting a seminar on “Improving Communication Skills for Engineers” with distinguished speakers who will share their experiences and speak about the opportunities, possibilities, and challenges in an engineering workplace and the required communication skills. You will hear first-hand tips on how to become an excellent communicator to advance your career.

The focus of this seminar is on communication skills one requires to be successful in an engineering profession. This seminar could be of special interest to engineering students, new graduates, young engineers, and young professionals in general.

This seminar is free; light refreshments will be provided.

Please register at the link below:

Day & Time: Wednesday, February 22nd, 2017
6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.

Location: Room 202, Galbraith Building, 35 St. George Street

Organizer: IEEE Toronto Section’s Industry Relations Committee, Young Professionals Affinity Group

Event Details:

6:15 pm-6:40 pm: Registration and Welcoming
6:40 pm-7:00 pm: 1st Speech by Dr. Tom Murad
7:00 pm-7:20 pm: 2nd Speech by Mr. Hugo Sánchez-Reategui
7:20 pm-7:40 pm: 3rd Speech by Mr. Ted Lyberogiannis
7:40 pm-8:00 pm: Open Panel and Q&A with Speakers
8:00 pm-8:30 pm: Closing and Networking

Other topics that will be covered in this seminar include:
§ What university does not teach you: the minimum level of knowledge and skills an engineer requires to perform engineering work independently, including academic knowledge, sector specific technical knowledge, business specific knowledge, emerging technologies, supervisory, management, and communication skills.
§ How much you can benefit from mentors in achieving your career goals.
§ Why life-long learning is critical for your career and life success.

Biography of speakers:

Dr. Tom Murad
Dr. Tom Murad is the Head of Siemens Engineering and Technology Academy, in Siemens Canada, with over 35 years of experience in professional engineering and technical operations executive management including more than 10 years of academic and R&D work in industrial controls and automation. In the last four years, he worked within Siemens Canada as the Head of Expert House and Engineering Director in the Industry Sector. Prior to joining Siemens Canada, Tom was the Senior Vice President and COO of AZZ-Blenkhorn & Sawle, an engineering system integration and technical solutions provider in Ontario, specialized in power distribution and controls in various industrial and infrastructure applications. He has previously held various V.P. and Director positions in a number of engineering and industrial organizations internationally, and contributed to many large global industrial projects. Dr. Murad is a Fellow of Engineers Canada and a member of Professional Engineers Ontario (PEO), APEGA in Alberta, and NAPEG in the Northwest Territories, as well as a Senior Member of IEEE in various technical societies. Tom earned a Bachelor of Engineering and a Doctorate (Ph.D.) in Power Electronics and Industrial Controls from the Loughborough University of Technology in the UK. He also received a Leadership Program Certificate from Schulich Business School, York University. Currently, Dr. Murad serves on a number of advisory boards in the industry and academia. He has been an active member of the PEO Licensing “Engineering Experience Review” Committee for the last 12 Years.

Mr. Hugo Sánchez-Reategui
Hugo Sanchez-Reategui has been a consultant of PowerStream Inc. for the past 6 years confirming capacity for Embedded Distributed Generators dealing with stakeholders, developers, utilities and government agencies. Hugo is a current member of Professional Engineers of Ontario (PEO), active member of Toastmasters International (Public Speaking) for the past 7 years. He earned a Bachelor of Engineering at National University of Callao, Peru and IEEQB Program Certificate at Ryerson University in 2010. Currently, Hugo mentors undergrad students, international engineers and junior Toastmasters members. His technical interests include Smart Grid Technologies, Distribution Reliability, Substation Communications and Protection of Distribution Systems.

Mr. Ted Lyberogiannis
Ted is a Professional Engineer with a Bachelor’s degree in Industrial Engineering from the University of Toronto and a Master’s degree in Electrical Power Systems from the University of Waterloo. He currently works as a manager at an electrical utility in Toronto. Upon graduating from his Bachelor’s degree in 2004, he realized that his technical abilities would be of little use if he was unable to communicate effectively. Shortly after graduating, he began practicing his public speaking by joining a local Toastmasters club at his work. He is now an experienced Toastmaster who has competed at the Semi-Finals of the World Championships of Public Speaking on two occasions – most recently placing 3rd in his Semi-Final this past August in Washington, DC. He has delivered talks to dozens of different audiences including the National Job Fair, students at the University of Toronto and the Water Environment Association of Ontario. He is a firm believer in the power of communication and that anyone can become a good public speaker if they practice enough – even those of us who studied engineering!

Innovative Radio Systems and Antennas for Space Telecommunication Applications

Friday, February 3rd, 2017

Wednesday February 8, 2017 at 4:00 p.m. Dr. Hervé Legay, Thales Alenia Space, will be presenting “Innovative Radio Systems and Antennas for Space Telecommunication Applications”.

Speaker: Dr. Hervé Legay
Thales Alenia Space, France

Day & Time: Wednesday, February 8th, 2017
4:00 pm

Location: BA 1230, Bahen Centre for Information Technology
40 St. George Street, Toronto, ON M5S 2E4

Contact: Sean V. Hum

Organizer: IEEE Toronto Electromagnetics & Radiation Chapter

Abstract: We stand at the dawn of a new era for the space telecommunication ecosystem, marked by a consistent exponential growth in throughput as well as the irruption of new systems based on constellation of satellites. For these challenges, new models for disruptive innovation are imagined for the future generation of payloads:
• Developing new antennas and RF subsystems concepts inspired by optics, or based on metamaterials (composite media with an internal periodic structure that provides specific characteristics such as filtering, phase-shifting, absorbing, etc.)
• Integrating of smart and agile RF systems with signal processing capability that exploit mechanically actuated RF components, smart RF surfaces as well as innovative deployment schemes.
• Introducing into space cost efficient manufacturing techniques, based on additive and subtractive processes, metallised plastics, thin organic large area electronics, etc. Recent achievements in these innovative concepts developed at Thales Alenia Space will be presented, identifying their perspectives and their limitations.

Biography: Hervé Legay was born in 1965. He received the electrical engineering and Ph.D. degrees from the National Institute of Applied Sciences (INSA), Rennes, France, in 1988 and 1991, respectively. For two years, he was a Postdoctoral Fellow with the University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB, Canada, where he developed innovating planar antennas. He joined Alcatel Space, Toulouse, France, in 1994, which is now Thales Alenia Space. He initially conducted studies in the areas of telecommunication satellite antennas and antenna processing. He designed the architecture and the antijamming process of the Syracuse 3 active antenna. He is the author of 27 patents. He is currently responsible for the R&T studies on space antennas, director of the joint laboratory MERLIN involving Thales Alenia Space and IETR (Institut d’electronique et de Télécommunication de Rennes). He coordinates the collaborations with academic and research partners. He was appointed Antenna Expert in Thales. Dr. Legay is a co-prize-winner of the 2007 Schelkunoff prize paper award. He received the Gold Thales Awards in 2008, a reward for the best innovations in the group Thales.

Innovations in Communications

Friday, January 20th, 2017

Thursday January 26, 2017 at 5:00 p.m. the IEEE Toronto Communication Society is inviting all interested IEEE and other engineers, technologists and students to our FIRST technical/social event themed “Innovations in Communications”.

Speaker: Ahmed Alsohaily, Technology Strategy, Telus
Presenting “Low Power Wireless Access for Internet of Things Connectivity”

Alberto Leon-Garcia, Professor, University of Toronto
Presenting “Enabling Smart Infrastructures with Multitier Cloud Computing on Software-Defined Infrastructure”

Nebu Mathai, Director, Strategic Initiatives + Advanced Engineering Cognitive Systems Corp
Presenting “Cognitive Electromagnetic Spectrum Operations: Emerging Trends and Technologies”

Day & Time: Thursday, January 26th, 2017
5:00 pm – 7:00+ pm

Location: Room SF 2202, Sandford Fleming Building
10 King’s College Rd, Toronto, ON M5S 3G8

Contact: Eman Hammad

Organizer: IEEE Toronto Communication Society

Kindly RVSP for event and dinner here.

We are also extending the invitation to interested volunteers to join our team, and for interested speakers to contact us.

Schedule: 5:00 pm – 5:05 pm Opening Remarks
5:05 pm – 5:30 pm Talk #1: Low Power Wireless Access for Internet of Things Connectivity
5:30 pm – 5:40 pm Coffee Break
5:45 pm – 6:15 pm Talk #2: Enabling Smart Infrastructures with Multitier Cloud Computing on Software-Defined Infrastructures
6:15 pm – 6:45 pm Talk #3: Cognitive Electromagnetic Spectrum Operations: Emerging Trends and Technologies
6:45 pm – 8:00 pm Dinner and Networking

Talk #1: Low Power Wireless Access for Internet of Things Connectivity

Abstract: This talk will discuss the emergence of Low Power Wireless Access (LPWA) connectivity to cater to many Internet of Things (IoT) applications. After providing an overview of LPWA challenges, potential solutions and innovations, 3GPP Narrowband IoT (NB-IoT) solution will be detailed as prime candidate technology for providing LPWA connectivity.

Biography: Ahmed Alsohaily (S’13–M’15) received his Ph.D. from the University of Toronto in 2015 and is currently the Assistant Director of the Wireless Lab at the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering in University of Toronto, where he holds a MITACS Elevate postdoctoral fellowship. He is also a member of the Technology Strategy team at Telus responsible for standardization at 3GPP RAN. He actively contributes to the IEEE ComSoc Standards Development and serves as an advisor to the NGMN Alliance

Talk #2: Enabling Smart Infrastructures with Multitier Cloud Computing on Software-Defined Infrastructure

Abstract: In this project we discuss the SAVI approach to integrate IoT, SDN, and cloud computing technologies into a platform that can support smart applications. From 2011 to 2016 the NSERC Strategic Network for Smart Applications on Virtual Infrastructures (SAVI) investigated the convergence of computing, networking, and sensing to create an agile platform for smart applications. We introduce SAVI’s multitier computing cloud that converges computing, SDN and sensing, and we describe the testbed that was deployed across Canada and federated with the U.S. We discuss use cases that are operational on SAVI including: service chaining, testbed-wide orchestration, intrusion-detection and protection using NFV, multilayer monitoring and modeling using machine learning, and a live intelligent transportation dashboard for the Greater Toronto Area

Biography: Professor Alberto Leon-Garcia is Distinguished Professor in Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Toronto. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Electronics an Electrical Engineering “For contributions to multiplexing and switching of integrated services traffic”. He is also a Fellow of the Engineering Institute of Canada and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He has received the 2006 Thomas Eadie Medal from the Royal Society of Canada and the 2010 IEEE Canada A. G. L. McNaughton Gold Medal for his contributions to the area of communications. Professor LeonGarcia is author of the leading textbooks: Probability and Random Processes for Electrical Engineering, and Communication Networks: Fundamental Concepts and Key Architecture. Leon-Garcia was Founder and CTO of AcceLight Networks in Ottawa from 1999 to 2002. He was Scientific Director of the NSERC Strategic Network for Smart Applications on Virtual Infrastructures, and Principal Investigator of the ORF Research Excellence project on Connected Vehicles and Smart Transportation.

Talk #3: Cognitive Electromagnetic Spectrum Operations: Emerging Trends and Technologies

Abstract: Electromagnetic spectrum operations (EMSO; a major component of CEMA, Cyber Electromagnetic Activities) are fundamental to a variety of defense and public security contexts. Forward-thinking roadmaps have highlighted the need to extend this to cognitive EMSO on dynamic land/water/air/space platforms.

Current solutions for CEMA — all based on COTS technologies — are lacking in several respects. Higher performance solutions have unfavorable size, weight and power (SWaP) characteristics, and low agility; the lower-end offers questionable quality of measurement with low flexibility. Additionally, the lack of sufficient edge computing to handle the high loads of radio signal processing often preclude aggressive real-time online sensing.

This talk will present a solution for RF situational awareness that disruptively surmounts these issues in all respects. Rather than employ COTS technologies with poor SWaP and mediocre performance, we present a custom integrated circuit (IC) that enables ultra-low SWaP with high-performance. Central to the solution is the integration of significant on-chip computing resources that enable processing of high-bandwidth RF data directly at the source. The lack of a hardened algorithmic processing chain enables flexible and rapid reconfiguration of the sensor-actuator personality. On-chip computation further facilitates a very agile loop from the high-level algorithmic processing to the low-level RF, analog and digital front ends.

We will also discuss how this uniquely Canadian technology aligns with and enables advanced defense applications.

Biography: Nebu John Mathai, PhD, PEng, is the Director of Strategic Initiatives and Advanced Engineering at Cognitive Systems Corp, a Waterloo, Ontario company. In this dual-mandate role, he directs a team at the forefront of advanced radio and computer science/engineering, while engaging with industrial, government and defence partners who require the bleeding edge. His team produced the highperformance low-power multi-processor computing architecture that forms the foundation of the company’s cognitive-radio-on-chip offering. Beyond this, they have developed real-time RF propagation and data fusion tools, and software suites for advanced cognitive radio sensing and communications applications. He also leads a number of strategic initiatives to anticipate and execute on the RF situational awareness requirements posed by next-generation civilian and defence roadmaps pertaining to electromagnetic spectrum operations.

Intermodulation Distortion Mitigation in Microwave Amplifiers and Frequency Converters

Friday, January 20th, 2017

Monday January 30, 2017 at 2:10 p.m. Professor Carlos Saavedra, Queen’s University and Associate Editor of the IEEE Transactions on Microwave Theory and Techniques, will be presenting “Intermodulation Distortion Mitigation in Microwave Amplifiers and Frequency Converters”.

Event Slides: Intermodulation Distortion Mitigation in Microwave Amplifiers and Frequency Converters

Speaker: Professor Carlos Saavedra
Queen’s University, Kingston
Associate Editor of the IEEE Transactions on Microwave Theory and Techniques

Day & Time: Monday, January 30th, 2017
2:10 pm – 3:00 pm

Location: Room WB116, Wallberg Building
184 College St, Toronto, ON M5S 3E4

Contact: Dustin Dunwell

Organizer: Solid State Circuit Society

Cost: Free for everyone.  Complimentary refreshments will be provided.

Abstract: Intermodulation distortion (IMD) refers to the phenomenon where the spectral lines of an information‐bearing signal interact with themselves to yield new, undesired, spectral lines as they pass through a circuit. While some of the spurious tones are easily eliminated through filtering, others are more difficult to deal with because they appear within the band of the information signal and interfere with it.  The study of IMD has a rich history and multiple techniques have been developed over time to mitigate it.  One such method is known as derivative superposition (DS), which reduces IMD distortion by using an auxiliary circuit to generate an out‐of‐phase replica of the IMD tones produced by the main circuit.  First introduced in the late 1990s, DS has attracted much attention due to its small footprint and low power consumption.  This talk will discuss work we have carried out at Queen’s that uses DS and digital assist to improve the output third‐order intercept point (OIP3) of gallium‐nitride (GaN) power amplifiers from by +40 dBm to +50 dBm over a 5 GHz span.  A stand‐alone distortion cancelling cell will also be presented which can improve the OIP3 of a generic off‐the‐shelf microwave amplifier by 7.5 dB. The talk will conclude with a discussion of mixer linearization using DS and digital assist techniques.

Biography: Carlos Saavedra obtained the Ph.D. degree from Cornell University, Ithaca, New York, in 1998. From 1998 to 2000 he was a Senior Engineer at Millitech Corporation (North Hampton, Massachusetts) and in 2000 he joined Queen’s University at Kingston where he currently holds the rank of Professor. He is an Associate Editor of the IEEE Transactions on Microwave Theory and Techniques, is a member of the Technical Program Review Committee of the IEEE International Microwave Symposium (IMS) and of the Steering Committee of the IEEE NEWCAS conference.  He is Past Chair of the IEEE MTT‐S Technical Coordinating Committee (TCC‐22) on Signal Generation and Frequency Conversion and was Guest Editor of the September 2013 IEEE Microwave Magazine Focus Issue titled “100 Years of Mixer Technology”. He served on the Steering and Technical Program Committees of the 2012 IEEE IMS and was a member of the IEEE RFIC Symposium TPC from 2008 to 2011.  Prof. Saavedra is a three‐time recipient of the third‐year ECE undergraduate teaching award at Queen’s University.  

CMOS Bioelectronics

Tuesday, January 17th, 2017

Friday January 20, 2017 at 2:10 p.m. Professor Ken Shepard, Electrical and Biomedical Engineering at Columbia University, will be presenting “CMOS Bioelectronics”.

Speaker: Prof. Ken Shepard
Electrical and Biomedical Engineering
Columbia University

Day & Time: Friday, January 20th, 2017
2:10 pm – 3:00 pm

Location: Room GB 248, 35 St George St, Toronto, ON M5S 1A4

Contact: Junho Jeong

Organizer: IEEE Toronto Photonics Chapter

**Refreshments will be served**

Abstract: CMOS electronics, which has revolutionized communications and computation in the last 30 years, has the same transformative potential for life science applications with appropriate “more than Moore” augmentation. In this talk, we will outline work in my group over the last 10 years, which has applied augmented CMOS to problems in molecular diagnostics, microbiology, and neuroscience. We will discuss several on-going projects in my group in these areas include high-bandwidth CMOS-integrated nanopores, point-functionalized nanotube devices integrated on CMOS for genomic diagnostics, electrochemical imaging chips for understanding microbial communities, high-density electrophysiological arrays for in vivo and in vitro studies of neural systems, biologically powered solid-state electronics, and various wireless probes to studying neural and cellular systems.

Biography: Ken Shepard received the B.S.E. degree from Princeton University, Princeton, NJ, in 1987 and the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in electrical engineering from Stanford University, Stanford, CA, in 1988 and 1992, respectively. From 1992 to 1997, he was a Research Staff Member and Manager with the VLSI Design Department, IBM T. J. Watson Research Center, Yorktown Heights, NY, where he was responsible for the design methodology for IBM’s G4 S/390 microprocessors. Since 1997, he has been with Columbia University, New York, where he is now the Lau Familty Professor of Electrical Engineering and Biomedical Engineering. He also was Chief Technology Officer of CadMOS Design Technology, San Jose, CA, until its acquisition by Cadence Design Systems in 2001. He is current serving on the board of two other start-ups, Ferric, commercializing integrated voltage regulator technology, and Quicksilver, commercializing single-molecule electronic genomic diagnostics. His current research interests include power electronics, carbon-based devices and circuits, and CMOS bioelectronics.

Abstraction in Situation Calculus Action Theories

Thursday, January 12th, 2017

Monday January 23, 2017 at 12:00 p.m. Bita Banihashemi, PhD Candidate in Computer Science at York University, will be presenting “Abstraction in Situation Calculus Action Theories”.

Speaker: Bita Banihashemi
PhD Candidate, Computer Science
York University

Day & Time: Monday, January 23, 2017
12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m.

Location: Room TRS2164, 575 Bay Street (entrance at 55 Dundas Street West), Ryerson University

Contact: Maryam Davoudpour

Organizer: WIE, Magnetics, Measurement/Instrumentation-Robotics

Abstract: We develop a general framework for agent abstraction based on the situation calculus and the ConGolog agent programming language. We assume that we have a high-level specification and a low-level specification of the agent, both represented as basic action theories. A refinement mapping specifies how each high-level action is implemented by a low-level ConGolog program and how each high-level fluent can be translated into a low-level formula. We define a notion of sound abstraction between such action theories in terms of the existence of a suitable bisimulation between their respective models. Sound abstractions have many useful properties that ensure that we can reason about the agent’s actions (e.g., executability, projection, and planning) at the abstract level, and refine and concretely execute them at the low level. We also characterize the notion of complete abstraction where all actions (including exogenous ones) that the high level thinks can happen can in fact occur at the low level.

Biography: Bita Banihashemi is currently a PhD candidate in Computer Science at York University. Her research is primarily focused on agent supervision, which is a form of control/customization of an agent’s behavior. Her research interests include Knowledge Representation and Reasoning, Autonomous Agents and Multi-agent Systems, and AI and the Web.