FoCAS ran a networking session called Perspectives on Collectives at the ICT conference on 20 October 2015 to standing room-only capacity. The aim was to present two research-informed scenarios to stimulate discussion on some benefits and perceived problems arising from collective adaptive systems.
Chaired by Stuart Anderson, University of Edinburgh, UK from the SmartSociety project, described the DIVERSIFY web browser fingerprint scenario as dealing with issues of identity and robustness whereas the CASSTING under-floor heating example was aiming to establish an equilibrium between individual preferences and collective outcomes. An audience of over 50 provided a lively discussion especially on web security, identity issues, the often conflicting goals between individual- and collective-actions, as well as the complexity of need for suitable governance.
Scenario 1: Multiply your identities on the web!
Benoit Baudry, INRIA, France from the DIVERSIFY project showed how the particular web browsing characteristics of your computer including operating system, web browser version, plugins, fonts etc, creates a unique web browser fingerprint which is then used to track your web activity. DIVERSIFY is exploring how software diversity can add noise and camouflage your web fingerprint to prevent tracking. However, sometimes web tracking can be convenient, so balancing user expectations is far from simple.
Scenario 2: Optimise your floor heating?
Marco Muñiz, Aalborg University, Denmark from the CASSTING project described how game theory is applied to control floor heating using new algorithms and cloud computing for energy efficiency, savings and increased comfort but with potential privacy and security risks. A broader view encompassing societal preferences as well as individual benefits was also raised in the discussion.
The DIVERSIFY project also manned an exhibit called “Ecology-inspired software diversification” at the ICT exhibition to demonstrate how software diversity can be exploited to improve privacy protection on the web
Innovate, Connect, Transform was the European Commission’s ICT 2015 conference held in Lisbon Portugal on 20-22 October to cover the intertwining themes of innovation and creativity while connecting people and the digital society to transform business and industry. The event comprised a number of parallel activities including a conference presenting EC policies and innovation within Horizon 2020; the ICT exhibition showcasing 150 exhibitors presenting the best of ICT research and innovation; also 130 networking sessions targeting themes and challenges relevant to Horizon 2020 and as well as Face2Face meetings, networking booths and “cosy corners”; and the Startup Europe Forum to motivate an entrepreneurial environment.
Video of FoCAS Workshop @ ICT 2015