During the Information Universe conference we aspire to bring together experts as well as young researchers from a number of different communities, to discuss and debate the definition and interpretation of information. We study the role of information in the way we try to build understanding and accumulate insights in physics, astronomy, cosmology, computational science, mathematics, bioinformatics and neuroscience. Contributions from any of these fields are strongly encouraged.

The conference will host sessions on:

1. Emergent space-time and gravity - Information Universe in vivo

Keynote: Thanu Padmanabhan

“Instead of the conventional view that gravity is a fundamental interaction, it could be that a microstructure - the 'atoms of space time' - give rise to it. … The connection between gravity and thermodynamics which started out as an analogy … has now become a physical reality.” in Scientific American India.

Keynote: Erik Verlinde

“We use concepts like time and space, but we don’t really understand what this means microscopically. That might change… I think there’s something we haven’t found yet, and this will help us discover the origins of our universe.” in Uva in the Spotlight.

Chris van den Broeck on unraveling black holes with gravitational waves.

2. Euclid, cosmology and large-scale structure

Keynote: Alan Heavens

“Advances in astrophysics and cosmology are driven by large and complex data sets, which can only be analyzed, interpreted and understood thanks to refined statistical methods.” - ICIC Mission statement.

Henk Hoekstra on cosmology and more with the Euclid mission, focusing on weak lensing.

Alessandra Silvestri on the theoretical aspects of the current cosmological challenges, with particular focus on dark energy.

Florent Leclercq on using Information Theory for classification of the Cosmic Web.

3. Quantum information and computation

Keynote: Lieven Vandersypen

“Quantum technology, technology making use of quantum effects, is about quantum computers faster than any computer we can imagine today, about ways of communicating with each other that are just impossible today, and about sensors and imaging techniques with unprecedented accuracy. But perhaps the most important applications we can’t even imagine quite yet.” - at TEDxBreda.

Michael Walter on quantum information theory and exploring the connections between quantum entanglement and space-time.

4. Machine learning - Information Universe in vitro (including industrial applications)

Keynote: Ashish Mahabal

“When one sees that the same kinds of techniques can be applied, that's fantastic. Because once you take a dataset and abstract it enough, the tools that you are using don't care where the data came from. It's highly rewarding to be able to work on these completely different scales: from the Universe level to the cell level.” - in an interview on data-driven astronomy.

Giuseppe Longo on Machine Learning in astronomy.

Target Holding on business applications: Machine learning as a service, finding the best applicant, BenCompare for personal contracts and the Internet of Things.

Horus experience on mobile 360 degree imaging and Machine Learning enabled surveillance.

5. Information, complexity and handling big data (including industrial applications)

Keynote: Peter Sloot

“I believe that if we can gain a better understanding of what complex systems actually amount to and develop the computational models to mimic them, we will get very close to predicting life, the universe and everything, and the best coffee for that matter.” - in UvA in the Spotlight.

Pratika Dayal on disentangling petabytes of data from the Cosmic Dark Ages.

Maarten Breddels shall guide us through full-dome visualizations of a billion stars from the latest GAIA data release.

Edwin Valentijn, Facts and Fakes on validating Big data, from cosmology with Euclid to open Science and the news media.


6. Life science and biology

Keynote: Karlheinz Meier (coordinator of the human brain project)

“What makes the brain so specific and so attractive in terms of computing? I mean: It runs on very little food, it’s ‘banana power’ that safely keeps you running; it’s very compact, obviously much smaller than a supercomputer; and maybe the most important thing: it doesn’t need any software updates. ... To implement the learning process in artificial systems is to me the biggest challenge, but also the most rewarding aspect, of brain inspired computing.” - at the SAI conference 2015.

© Information Universe. All rights reserved.
Design by Iva Kostadinova. Template based on Templated. Background image John Dubinski (University of Toronto).
Banner image: Niels Bos, Erwin Platen & Rense Boomsma (Kapteyn Institute, RUG)