News: Data- och informationsteknik related to Chalmers University of TechnologyThu, 06 Aug 2020 13:17:32 +0200 agents can learn to communicate effectively<p><b>A multi-disciplinary team of researchers from Chalmers and University of Gothenburg has developed a framework to study how language evolves as an effective tool for describing mental concepts. In a new paper, they show that artificial agents can learn how to communicate in an artificial language similar to human language. The results have been published in the scientific journal PLOS ONE.</b></p>This research lies on the border between cognitive science and machine learning. There has been an influential proposal from cognitive scientists that all human languages can be viewed as having evolved as a means to communicate concepts in a near-optimal way in the sense of classical information theory. The Gothenburg researchers' method for training the artificial agents is based on reinforcement learning, which is an area of machine learning where agents gradually learn by interacting with an environment and getting feedback. In this case, the agents start without any linguistic knowledge and learn to communicate by getting feedback on how well they succeed in communicating a mental concept. <p></p> <br /><div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/DoIT/News/AI%20PLOS%20ONE/MikaelAI.gif" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="Mikael Kageback" style="margin:5px" />”In our paper we have studied how agents learn to name mental concepts and communicate by playing a several rounds of a referential game consisting of a sender and a listener. We have especially focused on the colour-domain which is well studied in Cognitive Science. The game works as follows; the sender sees a colour and describes it by uttering a word from a glossary to the listener which then tries to reconstruct the colour. Both agents receive a shared reward based on how precise the listener’s reconstruction was. The words in the glossary have no meaning at the outset; it is up to the agents to agree on the meaning of the words during multiple rounds of the game. We see that the resulting artificial languages are near-optimal in an information-theoretic sense and with similar properties as found in human languages”, says Mikael Kågebäck, researcher at Sleepcycle, and whose PhD-dissertation at Chalmers contained some of the results presented in the paper.</div> <br /><div>Together with Sayeed, researcher in computer linguistics at the Centre for Linguistic Theory and Studies in Probability (CLASP) at University of Gothenburg, and Devdatt Dubhashi, professor, and Emil Carlsson, PhD student, in the Data Science and AI division at the Department of Computer Science and Engineering, he has now published the results. </div> <div><br /></div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/DoIT/News/AI%20PLOS%20ONE/AsadAI.gif" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="Asad Sayeed" style="margin:5px" />”From a practical viewpoint, this research provides the fundamental principles to develop conversational agents such as Siri and Alexa that communicate with human language”, says Asad Sayeed.<br /><div>The underlying idea of learning to communicate through reinforcement learning is also interesting for research in social and cultural fields, for example for the project GRIPES, which studies dogwhistle politics, and is led by Asad Sayeed. <span style="display:inline-block"></span></div></div> <div><div> </div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Useful in future research studies</h2> <div> <img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/DoIT/News/AI%20PLOS%20ONE/DevdattAI.gif" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="Devdatt Dubhashi" style="margin:5px" />”Cognitive experiments are very time consuming, as you often need to carry out careful experiments with human volunteers. Our approach provides a very powerful, flexible and inexpensive approach to investigate these fundamental questions. The experiments are fully under our control, repeatable and totally reliable. Thus our computational framework provide a valuable tool to investigate fundamental questions in cognitive science, language and interaction. For computer scientists it is a fertile area to explore the effectiveness of various learning mechanisms”, says Devdatt Dubhashi.</div> <div> </div></div> <div><br /></div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/DoIT/News/AI%20PLOS%20ONE/EmilAI.gif" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="Emil Carlsson" style="margin:5px" /></div> <div><br /></div> <div>“In the future, we want to investigate whether agents can develop communication similar to human language in other areas as well. One example is if our agents are able to reconstruct the hierarchical structures we observe in human language”, says Emil Carlsson. <br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div><h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Long-standing question</h2></div> <div>The study stems from a long-standing central question in cognitive science and linguistics: whether, in all of the vast diversity of human languages, there are common universal principles. Classic work from the 20th century indicated that there were common properties in different languages in words to describe colours. Are there underlying principles accounting for these common properties? </div> <div>A recent influential proposal from cognitive scientists is that there are indeed such common universal principles when viewed from the lens of information theory when languages are viewed as a means to communicate mental concepts making the most efficient use of resources. </div> <div>A series of talks given at CLASP by Ted Gibson from MIT back in 2016, where he <a href="">described results from experiments on human subject</a>s chosen from different societies and cultures around the world, led to the question ‘what if the human subjects were substituted by artificial computer agents? Would they develop a language with similar universal properties?'</div> <div><div><br /></div> <div><a href="">Link to the article in PLOS ONE</a>.<br /></div> <div><br /></div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Contact<br /></h2> <div>Asad Sayeed, researcher researcher in computer linguistics, Department of Philosophy, Linguistics, Theory of Science. <br /><a href=""></a></div> <div><br />Devdatt Dubhashi, professor, Data Science and AI division, Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Chalmers and University of Gothenburg. <br /><a href=""></a></div> <div><br />Emil Carlsson, PhD Student, Data Science and AI division, Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Chalmers and University of Gothenburg.<br /><a href=""></a></div> </div> <div><br /></div> <div>By <br />Monica Havström <br />Communications officer, Department of Philosophy, Linguistics and Theory of Science, University of Gothenburg. <br />Phone: +46 31-786 30 42 <br /> <br />Anneli Andersson <br /><div>Communications officer, Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Chalmers and Unitversity of Gothenburg.</div> <div>Phone: +46 31-772 10 29<br /></div></div> ​Wed, 15 Jul 2020 10:00:00 +0200 to reach new diagnostics<p><b>​Research to develop new techniques for diagnostics is found all over Chalmers. Read about some examples here!​</b></p><em><a href="/en/areas-of-advance/health/news/Pages/New-technology-to-give-more-healthcare.aspx">​These examples are linked to a main article published here.</a><br /></em><div><h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Combating antibiotic resistance</h2> <div><span style="background-color:initial">Erik Kristiansson at the Department of Mathematical Sciences has developed algorithms to analyse patterns in bacterial DNA. This can pinpoint changes that lead to resistance to antibiotics, thus increasing the chances of effective treatment. </span><br /></div> <div>In partnership with Kristina Lagerstedt and Susanne Staaf, Kristiansson founded 1928 Diagnostics, whose cloud-based software analyses the genetic code of bacteria and provides information about its spread and treatment options.<br /><br /></div> <div>Fredrik Westerlund at Biology and Biological Engineering studies the DNA molecules, called plasmids, that primarily cause the rapid spread of antibiotic resistance. To identify plasmids, the scientists attach “bar codes” to them. In combination with the CRISPR gene-editing tool, they can also identify the genes that make bacteria antibiotic resistant. Now the method has been further developed to identify the actual bacterium, which is important as different types of bacteria cause infections of differing severity.</div> <div><br /> </div> <div><em>Caption to picture above: Fredrik Westerlund studies the DNA molecules that primarily cause the rapid spread of antibiotic resistance. Here with colleagues Gaurav Goyal and Vinoth Sundar Rajan.</em></div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Diagnostics using microwaves</h2> <div>Microwaves make it possible to detect patterns that can be used for diagnostics, by passing weak microwave signals through the body and processing them. The pattern created is analysed using algorithms for image reconstruction or AI-based classification.</div> <div> </div> <div>Researchers in the Department of Electrical Engineering, along with Sahlgrenska University Hospital and other partners, are applying these methods to stroke diagnostics and mammography. The technology makes it possible to build small, mobile units, which make it easier to make a fast, early diagnosis – which is particularly critical when diagnosing a stroke. </div> <div>The so called “stroke helmet” developed by the research team can be used in an ambulance to determine, even before the patient arrives in hospital, whether a stroke was caused by a blood clot or a haemorrhage. This reduces the time to treatment, allowing more stroke patients to recover with fewer aftereffects. </div> <div>“Many factors indicate that microwave technology has the potential to be a highly efficient diagnostic tool,” says Andreas Fhager.</div> <div><br /> </div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><em>Caption to picture above</em></span><em>: Andreas Fhager and the “stroke helmet”, which can determine whether a stroke was caused by a blood clot or a haemorrhage.</em></div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">AI and diagnostics</h2> <div>Artificial intelligence can provide significant help in making healthcare decisions, and several AI projects are under way at Chalmers.</div> <div>Robert Feldt, Professor of computer science, and Marina Axelson-Fisk, Professor of mathematics, are working with the Clinic for Infectious Diseases at Sahlgrenska University Hospital in a project about sepsis – blood poisoning. Rapid diagnosis and treatment are critical for survival, but modern screening tools have low precision. The aim of the project is to help doctors to make the right diagnosis faster through the use of AI. The method they are developing can also be tested on other diagnoses, and this spring the researchers have particularly looked at whether it can be used on Covid-19.<br /><br /></div> <div>Another field where AI support has potential is in the analysis of medical imaging, in which computers learn to interpret radiological images of human organs. Fredrik Kahl’s research team at Electrical Engineering has partnered with Sahlgrenska University Hospital to develop an AI-based method of assessing tomographic images of the coronary arteries. Cardiovascular diseases are still the most common cause of death in Sweden and worldwide. An AI assessment not only has the potential to be just as accurate as a human, but also goes much faster and is more consistent once the computer has been fully trained. </div> <div>In the next step, AI can help to discover hitherto unnoticed connections and patterns, and thus contribute to creating new medical knowledge.</div> <div><br /> </div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><em>Caption to picture above:</em></span><em> Fredrik Kahl is a professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering. His research team is developing AI to diagnose medical imaging.</em></div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2"><span>Identifies disease before symptoms arise</span></h2> <div>Rikard Landberg at the Department of Biology and Biological Engineering works in the field of metabolomics, an extensive analysis of molecules in biological samples such as blood plasma. Factors that affect health – genetics, lifestyle, environmental pollutants, medicines – make their mark on the metabolome, the pattern of tiny molecules in the sample. By measuring these indicators and relating them to health parameters and diseases, scientists can study the impact of various factors, as well as learning about underlying mechanisms. Research is also under way to find biomarkers that can identify diseases such as cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes or cancer.</div> <div><br /> </div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><em>Caption to picture above:</em></span><em> Biomarkers in blood samples can give information on the risks of developing common illnesses.</em></div> <em> </em><h2 class="chalmersElement-H2"><span>Fast and accurate influenza test</span></h2> <div>At the Department of Microtechnology and Nanoscience, Dag Winkler and his colleagues are building a small portable device that will be able to diagnose influenza in less than an hour, eliminating the need to send the sample to a lab for analysis. Getting the test results within an hour means that patients with contagious diseases can be isolated in time. The research project is being carried out in collaboration with several partners, including Karolinska Institutet.</div> <div>The project is focused on influenza diagnostics, but the team say the equipment can also be used to diagnose other diseases, such as malaria, SARS or Covid-19. In the past year, the research team has improved the sensitivity of the device to such a degree that they have applied for a patent and are looking into commercialisation.</div> <div><br /> </div> Texts: Mia Malmstedt and Malin Ulfvarson<br /><br /><a href="">These texts are republished from Chalmers Magasin no.1, 2020</a> (in Swedish).</div> <div><a href="/en/areas-of-advance/health/news/Pages/New-technology-to-give-more-healthcare.aspx">The exampels are linked to a main article, published here.​</a></div> <div><br /> </div>Wed, 24 Jun 2020 18:00:00 +0200 technology to give more healthcare<p><b>​Major challenges await Swedish healthcare and the need for new technology to solve them is urgent. Diagnostics is one of the pieces of the puzzle. The healthcare system as a whole, as well as individual patients, can benefit from for example AI and precision diagnostics.</b></p><span style="background-color:initial"><a href="/en/areas-of-advance/health/news/Pages/Working-to-reach-new-diagnostics.aspx"><em>This article is linked to these examples of Chalmers research in the diagnostics area.</em></a><br /><br />Let us begin by emphasising that no, this is not yet another coronavirus article. Even if most every aspect of healthcare and diagnostics in the first half of 2020 has been about Covid-19, naturally there are many other challenges and future development projects for Swedish healthcare, both pre- and post-corona.</span><div><br /></div> <div>There is no question that Swedish healthcare is at the threshold of a major transition. Patient queues, overfilled emergency wards, primary care reforms and lack of staffing flit past our eyes daily in the news flow. Perhaps most of it can be boiled down to one question: Has healthcare become too good?</div> <div> </div> <div>“We can achieve more and more, at ever-increasing ages and with better and better precision,” says Peter Gjertsson, Area Manager at Sahlgrenska University Hospital. He is responsible for Area 4, which includes radiology, clinical physiology and all the laboratories – the majority of the hospital’s diagnostics. </div> <div>“But medical advances and the increasing numbers of elderly people in the population also lead to greater need for medical care. Now we need to turn to technology to help us. We cannot just keep working as we’ve done previously, we need technological solutions that allow us to do more with the same resources.”</div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">AI makes diagnostics accurate and saves resources</h2> <div>A clear example of such a solution is AI and diagnostic imaging. If a computer can interpret images using artificial intelligence, the radiologist gets a pre-sorted selection to review; images in which the computer has already identified potential problems. This makes diagnostics more accurate, faster and more efficient. </div> <div>“We also see a development in which technology allows patients to manage more of their measuring and diagnostics at home,” Gjertsson says. “The patients become experts on their own illness, which is an advantage for the individual and saves healthcare resources.”</div> <div>He makes sure to point out that those who cannot use the new technology for whatever reason will still be taken care of with more traditional means.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Precision medicine is another burgeoning field. When genetic diagnostics can point out disease and diagnostic imaging identifies the problem area, treatments can be tailored to the individual.</div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Health research nearly all over Chalmers</h2> <div>Chalmers and Sahlgrenska University Hospital have collaborated closely for many years. Researchers from the two institutions have developed advanced medical engineering products, established new knowledge as the basis for better pharmaceuticals and conducted research on environments and architecture in healthcare. In fact, 12 of Chalmers’ 13 departments are conducting health-related research in a wide array of fields.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>It became clear just how multifaceted the research was when Chalmers catalogued all of its research projects in preparation for starting up its new Area of Advance, Health Engineering. The new Area of Advance aims to build a common thread through research at Chalmers, linking it with external partners. It opened its doors in January. <br /><br /></div> <div>“As we did an inventory of our research, we conducted interviews at every department and realised that many issues in the field of health were shared across department boundaries,” says Ann-Sofie Cans, Associate Professor at Chemistry and Chemical Engineering and Director of the Health Engineering Area of Advance.</div> <div>“Expertise is in demand, internally and externally, and as it turns out, Chalmers has a lot of it.” </div> <div>Cans thinks Chalmers researchers have developed a habit of working in “silos” for far too long.</div> <div>“Now we’re going to start up activities in which our over 200 health-related researchers at Chalmers can get to know each other, and also increase our external collaborations.”</div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Collaboration in Chalmers’ AI centre</h2> <div>One field of collaboration that has already taken steps forward is AI. In December 2019, Sahlgrenska University Hospital signed on as a partner in the Chalmers AI Research Centre, CHAIR. In practical terms, the partnership agreement is a commitment of at least five years, with jointly funded research in AI for health and healthcare. The partners have carved out several challenges that take priority. One of them is diagnostics. With AI, computer systems can process huge amounts of data – measurements, text, images – and learn to recognise symptoms.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Fredrik Johansson, Assistant Professor at Chalmers’ Department of Computer Science and Engineering, is the bridge between the Health Engineering Area of Advance, CHAIR and SU. He and his counterpart at SU are developing a joint research agenda. </div> <div>“Although we have worked together previously, we can coordinate our efforts by partnering within the Area of Advance and CHAIR,” he says. “For example, we can see if several researchers are actually working towards the same goal, so we can improve efficiency and find synergies.”</div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Searching for patterns in patient groups</h2> <div>Johansson himself is coordinating a project in which students use collected data about patients with Alzheimer’s disease to have AI search for patterns. Alzheimer’s disease has many different forms of expression and is currently diagnosed using cognitive testing – things like memory tests.</div> <div>“We know that Alzheimer’s patients have plaques that form in the brain. But some patients develop severe symptoms while others don’t, despite having equally extensive plaques. Why is that? We want to develop a tool that can provide a comprehensive look at the patient to determine the cause of the differences. We are looking at factors that can be measured when they are diagnosed, and that can also be monitored over time. The idea is primarily to be able to predict how the disease can be expected to develop, but perhaps in the long term we will also be able to develop a tool that can diagnose subgroups of Alzheimer’s patients.”</div> <div><br /></div> <div>There are plans for a shared infrastructure and also for training initiatives. One example is training in ethical review, which has been requested by many Chalmers researchers who have not had to work with this before, and which is of course important in healthcare.</div> <div>“We may need to train our staff in this,” Johansson says. “And vice versa, we are also talking about AI training for researchers at SU.”</div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">“We’re here to support them”</h2> <div>Ann-Sofie Cans points out that Chalmers is also supporting the new innovation training course for clinicians that was recently started at SU.</div> <div>“Sahlgrenska wants doctors to be versed in a variety of technologies. We can help them to find the right people to hold a lecture or arrange a study visit, like the one this spring on AI and 3D printing,“ she says.</div> <div>“The healthcare system is realising more and more that they need the skills of engineers – and we’re here to support them. If no one uses our solutions, then they won’t benefit anyone.”</div> <div><br /> </div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">ABOUT: Chalmers’ Health Engineering Area of Advance</h2> <div>Chalmers’ new Area of Advance covers 12 departments and is organised in five profile areas:<br /><br /></div> <div>• Digitalisation, big data and AI</div> <div>• Infection, drug delivery and diagnostics</div> <div>• Prevention, lifestyle and ergonomics</div> <div>• Medical engineering</div> <div>• Systems and built environments for health and care</div> <div><br /></div> <div>These profile areas were defined based on the research represented at Chalmers, but they have also proven to serve as valuable access points to the university.</div> <div><br />In addition to Sahlgrenska University Hospital, the external partners include the Faculty of Science and the Sahlgrenska Academy at Gothenburg University, the Västra Götaland region, the AstraZeneca Bioventure Hub, the University of Borås and Sahlgrenska Science Park.<br /><br /></div> <div>The Area of Advance and the partnerships embrace not only research but also education. Chalmers and SU have started a pilot project with a joint graduate school in biomedical engineering. In the long term, it is possible that doctoral students accepted to the programme will be able to earn double degrees. Chalmers has also created the new Biomedical Engineering bachelor’s programme, in which the first students will start this autumn.<br /><br /></div> <div>The Health Engineering Area of Advance has defined three social challenges of focus, in accordance with the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals: <em>Changed population and new diseases</em>, <em>Increased need for healthcare in a society with limited resources</em> and <em>Health, climate and sustainability.</em></div> <div><br />Text: Mia Malmstedt<br /><br /></div> <div><em>Caption to the picture of the operating theatre:</em></div> <div><div><em>The operating theatre in the Imaging and Intervention Centre at Sahlgrenska University Hospital, fully equipped with nearly 400 medical engineering products for imaging-supported diagnostics or treatment. This is one of the most high-tech, advanced surgical wards in Sweden. There are several so called hybrid theatres in the building, where surgery and diagnostic imaging can be done in the same room. </em></div> <div><em>This year Chalmers’ MedTech West research centre is establishing a collaborative laboratory in the Imaging and Intervention Centre. Clinical trials in microwave-based diagnostics and magnetoencephalography (MEG) are planned to start in 2021.</em></div></div> <div><br /> </div> <div><a href="">This text is republished from Chalmers Magasin no. 1, 2020​</a> (in Swedish).</div> <div><a href="/en/areas-of-advance/health/news/Pages/Working-to-reach-new-diagnostics.aspx">Read related article with examples of Chalmers research in the area of diagnostics here.</a></div> <div>​<br /></div>Wed, 24 Jun 2020 16:00:00 +0200–-the-start-of-our-smart-society.aspx – the start of our smart society<p><b>​The Swedish auction of frequency bands for 5G this autumn will be the start of the next generation of mobile systems, which is expected to result in a plethora of new connected services. Which actors will drive innovation remains to be seen – but how trust is handled will be crucial. ​</b></p><p>​<span style="background-color:initial">Initially, we will primarily experience a significantly stronger mobile broadband, and the capacity to connect a larger number of units. 5G will also be ten times more energy efficient compared to 4G. Then, the notorious 5G boost of the Internet of Things will likely follow, and the expected revolution of industry, smart cities, cloud-based augmented reality and much more. Many industries have already launched connected services, based on other communication standards such as Wi-Fi or 4G.</span></p> <p>“Which is good, a rapid development gives competitive advantage. We learn as we go, and with 5G comes the opportunity to scale up”, says Tommy Svensson, researcher in Communication Systems.</p> <p>He believes this is an important revolution and exemplifies with the automotive industry.</p> <p>“Important aspects of their operations will be cloud-based, such as product updates to vehicles via the network and collection of data on maintenance needs, and we will see new traffic safety features thanks to fast communication to and in-between vehicles”, says Tommy Svensson.</p> <p>“There are still areas of development for 5G, such as AI that could self-optimize the networks, energy distribution to sensors, or to improve coverage in challenging areas across the globe”, says Tommy Svensson.</p> <p>The scenarios for the future are attractive, but what does it take for new technology to bring innovation on a broad front? Erik Bohlin at the Department of Technology Management and Economics studies regulation and competition in telecom. He says there is an ongoing debate about which actors are likely to drive the development.</p> <p>“Mobile operators need to be on their toes if they want to drive innovation in the 5G cloud. It is very likely that there will be other actors. Cloud services of today are mostly driven by other than mobile operators”, says Erik Bohlin.</p> <p>“With 5G there is a possibility to use more frequency bands, different frequency bands may be suitable for different purposes. There is also a discussion about allocating a frequency range for specific applications. Several countries in Europe have already taking this decision, including Sweden”, says Erik Bohlin.</p> <p>Some mean that it would benefit innovation to open the market for new actors to drive and develop new applications. Erik Bohlin and his colleagues have studied the current policies for telecom and frequency allocation and compared with available research on innovation systems. The analysis shows that today's regulation of the telecom market in Europe has mainly been focused on competition issues, to avoid any individual player becoming too dominant.</p> <p>However, with the launch of 5G, the issue of promoting innovation has been raised. But there is no simple answer on how to set up a frequency allocation auction in order to promote innovation, according to Erik Bohlin. Innovation is difficult to predict. He makes a historical comparison.</p> <p>“Many believed that 3G was going to boost innovation, but it was not until smartphones came that we saw an upswing. Nor could anyone predict that today's major business areas would be based on free services on the Internet, such as Google, Facebook and Spotify.”</p> <p>Most of the debate about 5G the last year has concerned security. High security requirements will be imposed on both operators and suppliers of infrastructure. In February it was decided that the Swedish Post and Telecom Authority (PTS), who are hosting the frequency auctions, needs to consult with the Swedish Security Service (Säpo) and the Swedish National Defense before granting any frequency permits.</p> <p>5G also enables new kinds of cloud services, but trust will be crucial in order to successfully provide these services.</p> <p>“In order to trust the telecom operators with these services, they need to ensure security, confidentiality, integrity. Some industry actors mean that they need to run their own services”, says Tomas Olovsson at the Department of Computer Science and Engineering.</p> <p>“If you look at the 5G network itself, the security need not be more challenging than for 4G. It's just a matter of moving data from a to b. Security can be handled in the same way as today, at a higher level in the applications”, says Tomas Olovsson.</p> <p>In terms of security, there are also benefits with 5G.</p> <p>“With 5G there is an opportunity to put parts of the security in the network itself and for some applications it can be a big advantage”, says Tomas Olovsson.</p> <p>For example, letting the network help authenticate the party you are communicating with in time-critical situations, or using a targeted radio signal, making wiretapping more difficult.</p> <p><br /></p> <p><em>Text: Malin Ulfvarson</em></p> <p><em>Illustration: Yen Strandqvist</em></p> <p><br /></p> <p><a href="">Republished from Chalmers magazine no. 1 2020</a> (In Swedish)</p> <p><br /></p> <p><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Areas%20of%20Advance/Information%20and%20Communication%20Technology/News%20events/CM/illustration5G_CM-nr1-20.jpg" alt="illustration of a connected city" style="margin:5px" /><br /><br /><br /></p> <p>Also read: <a href="/en/departments/e2/news/Pages/5G-enables-communicating-gadgets-and-sustainability.aspx">5G enables communicating gadgets and sustainability</a></p> <p>​<br /></p>Mon, 15 Jun 2020 13:00:00 +0200 cybersecurity wins innovation award<p><b>When the recipients of the ÅForsk scholarship for &quot;most innovative entrepreneurs 2020&quot; was presented, Wissam Aoudi at the Department of Computer Science and Engineering was on the list. His company Omen Technologies builds research-based cybersecurity solutions for the emerging IoT system sector.</b></p><div>​<img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/DoIT/Profile%20pictures/NS/W-Aoudi.gif" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="Wissam Aoudi" style="margin:5px" />&quot;As the fourth industrial revolution unfolds, and with the promises offerd by the 5G technology, owners of cyber-physical systems and industrial control systems believe that connecting their systems and infrastructures to external networks, and to the Internet, is necessary to remain competitive in the market&quot; says Wissam Aoudi, PhD student in the Networks and Systems division.  </div> <div><h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Increased exposure to cyberattacks</h2></div> <div>Along with the openness and connectivity, industrial systems, including safety-critical components, face an increasing exposure to cyberattacks. Technologies are developing quickly, and the challenge of securing the to-be-connected systems leads industries to actively search for innovative solutions. </div> <div>&quot;Omen Technologies offers novel research-based methods for monitoring these types of systems in real time to detect implausible behaviour that may be due to either intentional malicious manipulation or unintentional failures. Our ambition is to commercialize our research-based technology to bring it to full potential, and thus contribute to the sustainability and safety of the imminent transition into a highly connected and digitalized society&quot; says Wissam Aoudi.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Omen Technologies is part of <a href="">Chalmers Ventures Tech Transfer-program</a>.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><a href="">In this movie</a> Wissam Aoudi describes the technology and the research behind it. <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">The ÅForsk scholarship</h2></div> <div>The scholarship is awarded so that the scholars with their solutions, services and products can create positive effects for social development. The scholars are selected through a nomination process where business developers from regionally based innovation environments across the country can suggest entrepreneurs. This year, a record number of applications were submitted.</div> <br /><div>Among the ten selected entrepreneurs, <strong>Johanna Nissén Karlsson</strong> and <strong>Simon Isaksson</strong> also represent Chalmers and Chalmers Ventures. </div> <div><br /></div> <div><a href="">Press release from SSIP</a> (in Swedish)</div> <div><br /></div> <div><h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Contact</h2></div> <div><a href="/en/Staff/Pages/wissam-aoudi.aspx">Wissam Aoudi,</a> PhD student, Networks and Systems, Computer Science and Engineering</div> <div><br /></div> <div></div>Fri, 03 Apr 2020 00:00:00 +0200 deep learning for embedded systems<p><b>EmbeDL, a company based on Chalmers research on efficient deep learning has received funding to bring their innovation to the market. Potential customers are found in all areas using deep learning, from self-driving vehicles to the Internet of Things.</b></p><div>Chalmers participation in the <a href="">Horizon2020 EU project LEGaTO </a>(low energy toolset for hetergeneous computing) provided the basis for the innovation in EmbeDL. The aim for the EU project was to develop the next generation toolset for efficient heterogeneous computing, and EmbeDL is using the results to optimize deep learning models to make them faster and more energy efficient without compromising accuracy. </div> <div>– Deep learning is a very powerful and successful technology which will drive the next generation of ubiquitous AI devices, for example in the Internet of Things, says Devdatt Dubhashi, professor in the Data Science and AI division at Computer Science and Engineering. <br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div>Devdatt Dubhashi is co-founder and chief scientific officer of EmbeDL, and sees the scaling down of large networks to allow them to run on small, inexpensive, heterogeneous hardware plattforms, as the major challenge. The core technology of EmbeDL involves a combination of algorithmic techniques to optimize both the structure and parameters of deep neural networks, so that they scale down dramatically and become much more efficient computationally, while ensuring sufficient accuracy. </div> <div></div> <div><h2 class="chalmersElement-H2"><span>Taking the product to market<br /></span></h2> <div>Almi Invest recently announced that they will invest SEK 2.5 million in the company, and Chalmers Ventures, Stoaf III SciTech AB, Butterfly Ventures and Circus Future also participate in the share issue of SEK 7 million. The market for optimization of Deep Learning models is currently estimated at EUR 3.6 billion annually and is expected to grow explosively within the next few years. <br /></div> <div>– The investment will be used to take the product to market with initial focus on the automotive industry followed by IoT. In 2021, we will also launch the technology as a cloud-based platform, says Hans Salomonsson, CEO, who founded EmbeDL with Devdatt Dubhashi. <br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div>The company has managed to reduce the number of calculations in deep learning models by up to ten times. After optimization, the models can be used on inexpensive hardware and potentially result in large savings for companies deploying deep learning in embedded systems. The software can be used in all application areas where deep learning is used, from self-driving vehicles to the Internet of Things. A major challenge in deep learning and AI development is relatively heavy calculations, expensive hardware and difficulties in achieving real-time requirements. <br /></div> <div>– EmbeDL has clearly shown the value of its technology and Chalmers Ventures is now looking forward to assisting with the commercialization, says Jonas Bergman, Investment Director at Chalmers Ventures.</div> <div><span><br /></span></div> <div><span>The industrial interest has been great from heavy technology companies, both nationally and internationally. The technology has been verified by industrial pilots in the automotive industry. Earlier this year, EmbeDL received an <a href="">award from the prestigious international network HiPEAC </a>for its commercial potential. <br /></span></div> <div><span><br /></span></div> <a href="">Press release from Almi Invest</a>  (Swedish) <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Contact</h2> <div><span><a href="/sv/personal/Sidor/dubhashi.aspx">Devdatt Dubhashi</a>,</span> professor, Data Science and AI division, chief scientific officer, EmbeDL. </div> <br />Hans Salomonsson, CEO, EmbeDL<br /><a href=""></a><br />+46 730 63 28 37</div> <div><a href=""><br />EmbeDL webpage</a><br /> <span><span style="display:inline-block"></span></span><br /></div>Fri, 13 Mar 2020 10:00:00 +0100 has scaled up AI, autonomous systems and software at Chalmers<p><b>​WASP Chair Sara Mazur and KAW Chair Peter Wallenberg visited Chalmers to gain insight into the activities. The large research program has scaled up the research at several of Chalmers departments.</b></p>​<span style="background-color:initial">During the visit, Sara Mazur and Peter Wallenberg met Chalmers’ WASP researchers and learned about how the programme has developed at the university. They first met three of the research leaders that Chalmers has recruited with funding from WASP.</span><div><br /></div> <div>Professor Ross D. King has been recruited from the University of Manchester. He aims to make science more efficient with the aid of artificial intelligence (AI). At the Department of Biology and Biotechnology, he will continue his work with a &quot;Robot Scientist&quot;. The focus is to understand how cells work - a research area that is so complex that human scientists struggle, and where robotic help is needed.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Christopher Zach, joining recently from Toshiba's research lab in Cambridge, is now a Research Professor at the Department of Electrical Engineering, and Fredrik Johansson, with a postdoc from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, is now an Assistant Professor at the Department of Computer Science and Engineering. </div> <div><br /></div> <div>Christopher's research topic is computer vision and image understanding, and Fredrik's research area is machine learning with a focus on medical applications. With mathematical theory and modelling as a scientific basis, the goal is to develop tools to be used as decision support in autonomous systems and health care. Is it possible to design a system with an ability to reason its way to a correct conclusion?</div> <div><br /></div> <div>“Artificial intelligence offers very promising support in radiology, to identify tumours and other abnormalities in tomography or X-ray images. But work remains to be done to make the systems robust to changes in personnel, equipment and patient groups,” says Fredrik Johansson.</div> <div><br /></div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">WASP projects at five departments</h2> <div>The WASP program has scaled up the research in AI, autonomous systems and software at Chalmers. Since the start in 2018, approximately 50 PhD students and postdocs have been recruited and further recruitments are planned. The initiative is particularly noticeable at the Department of Mathematical Sciences, according to Daniel Persson, Assistant Professor and supervisor in the WASP program.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>“Mathematics for AI has increased at the department, not least the collaboration between research groups and with industry. A total of 14 research projects within AI are ongoing at the department today – thanks in large part to the fact that our researchers have been successful in obtaining grants from WASP,” says Daniel Persson.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Chalmers Vice President for Research and Doctoral Education Anders Palmqvist is very pleased with how WASP has spread across the university departments.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>“We have ongoing WASP projects at five different departments. Chalmers has a strategic ambition to work across departments through its Areas of Advance, and Chalmers' initial work to mobilise for the launch of WASP was handled in collaboration with the Information and Communication Technology Area of Advance,” says Anders Palmqvist.</div> <div><br /></div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Successful graduate school</h2> <div>In addition to research projects and strategic recruitments, WASP also runs a graduate school for PhD students with a range of joint courses and network meetings. Christian Berger, from the Department of Computer Science and Engineering, was involved in building up the graduate school.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>“The courses and network meetings, both nationally and internationally, offer great value to the PhD students. It was a challenge to develop an educational programme adapted to students from many disciplines, but what we have achieved broadens the students’ expertise and gives them an ability to communicate their research between the disciplines – which is not always easy,” says Christian Berger.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>During their visit to Chalmers, Sara Mazur and Peter Wallenberg also visited Chalmers Biomechatronics and Neurorehabilitation Lab. Director Max Ortiz Catalan demonstrated two types of research projects with assistance from two patients.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>About WASP</strong></div> <div>The Wallenberg Artificial Intelligence, Autonomous Systems and Software Program (WASP) is a major national initiative for strategically motivated basic research, education and faculty recruitment in artificial intelligence, autonomous systems and software development, funded by the Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation together with the partner universities and participating industry. The starting point for WASP is the combined existing world-leading competence in Electrical Engineering, Computer Engineering, and Computer Science at Sweden’s five major ICT universities: Chalmers University of Technology, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Linköping University, Lund University and Umeå University. Research projects are also conducted at Uppsala University and Örebro University.</div> <div>The aim is to strengthen, expand, and renew the national competence through new strategic recruitments, a challenging research program, a national graduate school, and collaboration with industry.</div> <div><a href=""></a></div> <div><br /></div> <div>At Chalmers, there is an established collaboration between WASP and Chalmers AI Research Centre, CHAIR, to ensure good synergy.</div> <div><a href="/en/centres/chair/Pages/default.aspx"></a></div> Tue, 25 Feb 2020 17:00:00 +0100 method to protect critical infrastructures against cyberattacks<p><b>Cyberattacks are on the rise and malicious actors are shifting focus towards targeting larger companies and organizations, a recent movement known as &quot;big game hunting&quot; in the cybersecurity industry.</b></p><div>In recent years, large companies, organizations, and public institutions have been subject to a wave of blackmail and ransomware threats. As an example, SVT (Swedish Television), recently reported that they had discovered a number of <a href="">intrusion attempts</a>, and that they are now setting up a special cybersecurity team. Similarly, Norsk Hydro, a multinational company in the process-control industry, <a href="">lost large sums after an attack in 2019</a>.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>In a project financed by the <a href="">Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency</a>, <span>researchers at the Department of Computer Science and Engineering have <span style="display:inline-block"></span></span>proposed a new method for detecting stealthy attacks, tailored in particular to the protection of critical infrastructures. In the movie above, Wissam Auodi, PhD student in the Networks and Systems division, describes the proposed system, PASAD, and how it works.  <br /></div> <div><h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">PASAD – solving an easier problem</h2></div> <div>At the basis of the algorithm is an innovative new way of measuring if and when the monitored system departs from its normal dynamics and starts to behave differently. The method works by first capturing the normal behaviour of the underlying system during an analysis phase, and then monitoring the real-time behaviour to detect anomalous changes and raise an alert on suspicion of a potential attack. </div> <div><br /></div> <div>Traditional methods are based on historical measurements and try to predict the system's future behaviour based on them, and then compare this with real-time observations and warn when the difference becomes too large. But it is difficult to predict the future. The methods only work to detect obvious attacks and miss more advanced intrusions, where attackers hide their tracks in noise from data.</div> <br /><div></div> <div>The now proposed method has significantly better accuracy. Removing the step of predicting future behaviour means that the new method is more sensitive and can thus detect more advanced, stealthy attacks that could previously be hidden in the noise.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Contact </h3></div> <div><strong></strong><a href="/sv/personal/Sidor/wissam-aoudi.aspx">Wissam Aoudi</a>, PhD student, Networks and systems.</div> <div><a href="/sv/personal/Sidor/magnus-almgren.aspx">Magnus Almgren</a>, docent, Networks and systems.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Related projects and publications</h3></div> <div><a href="">Swedish national research centre on Resilient Information and Control Systems</a>. <br /></div> <div><a href=""><br /></a></div> <div><a href="">&quot;Truth Will Out: Departure-Based Process-Level Detection of Stealthy Attacks on Control Systems&quot;</a><br />Proceedings of the ACM Conference on Computer and Communication Security 2018. </div> <div><br /></div> <div><a href="">&quot;A probe into process-level attack detection in industrial environments from a side-channel perspective&quot;</a><br />ACM International Conference Proceeding Series 2019. <br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div><a href="">&quot;Model-Free Detection of Cyberattacks on Voltage Control in Distribution Grids&quot;<br /></a></div> <div>15th European Dependable Computing Conference, 2019. <br /></div> Mon, 17 Feb 2020 08:00:00 +0100 the internet more energy efficient<p><b>​Researchers at Chalmers ​recently completed a 5-year research project looking at how to make fibre optic communications systems more energy efficient. Among their proposals are smart, error-correcting data chip circuits, which they refined to be 10 times less energy consumptive. The project has yielded multiple scientific articles, in publications including Nature Communications.</b></p>​<span style="background-color:initial">Streaming films and music, scrolling through social media, and using cloud-based storage services are everyday activities now. But to accommodate this digital lifestyle, a huge amount of data needs to be transmitted through fibre optic cables – and that amount is increasing at an almost unimaginable rate, consuming an enormous amount of electricity. This is completely unsustainable – at the current rate of increase, if no energy efficiency gains were made, within ten years the internet alone would consume more electricity than is currently generated worldwide. The electricity production cannot be increased at the same rate without massively increasing the usage of fossil fuels for electricity generation, which of course would lead to a significant increase in carbon dioxide emissions.</span><div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/E2/Nyheter/Smarta%20datachips%20del%20av%20lösningen%20för%20att%20göra%20internet%20energisnålare/Peter-Andrekson_250x333px.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="Peter Andrekson" style="margin:5px;width:200px;height:263px" /><br /><span style="background-color:initial">“The challenge lies in meeting that inevitable demand for capacity and performance, while keeping costs at a reasonable level and minimising the environmental impacts,” says Peter Andrekson, Professor of Photonics at the Department of Microtechnology and Nanoscience at Chalmers.</span><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div>Peter Andrekson was the leader of the 5-year research project <a href="" target="_blank">‘Energy-efficient optical fibre communication’</a>, which has contributed significant advances to the field.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>In the early phase of the project, the Chalmers researchers identified the biggest energy drains in today's fibre optic systems. With this knowledge, they then designed and built a concept for a system for data transmission which consumes as little energy as possible. Optimising the components of the system against each other results in significant energy savings.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Currently, some of the most energy-intensive components are error-correction data chips, which are used in optical systems to compensate for noise and interference. The Chalmers researchers have now succeeded in designing these chips with optimised circuits.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/E2/Nyheter/Smarta%20datachips%20del%20av%20lösningen%20för%20att%20göra%20internet%20energisnålare/Per-Larsson-Edefors_250x333px.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatLeft" alt="Per Larsson-Edefors" style="margin:5px;width:200px;height:263px" />“Our measurements show that the energy consumption of our refined chips is around 10 times less than conventional error-correcting chips,” says Per Larsson-Edefors, Professor in Computer Engineering at the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at Chalmers.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>At a systemic level, the researchers also demonstrated the advantages of using ‘optical frequency combs’ instead of having separate laser transmitters for each frequency channel. An optical frequency comb emits light at all wavelengths simultaneously, making the transmitter very frequency-stable. This makes reception of the signals much easier – and thus more energy efficient.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Energy savings can also be made through controlling fibre optic communications at the network level. By mathematically modelling the energy consumption in different network resources, data traffic can be controlled and directed so that the resources are utilised optimally. This is especially valuable if traffic varies over time, as is the case in most networks. For this, the researchers developed an optimisation algorithm which can reduce network energy consumption by up to 70%.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>The recipe for these successes has been the broad approach of the project, with scientists from three different research areas collaborating to find the most energy-saving overall solution possible, without sacrificing system performance.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/E2/Nyheter/Smarta%20datachips%20del%20av%20lösningen%20för%20att%20göra%20internet%20energisnålare/Erik-Agrell_250x333px.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="Erik Agrell" style="margin:5px;width:200px;height:263px" />These research breakthroughs offer great potential for making the internet of the future considerably more energy-efficient. Several scientific articles have been published in the three research disciplines of optical hardware, electronics systems and communication networks.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>“Improving the energy efficiency of data transmission requires multidisciplinary competence. The challenges lie at the meeting points between optical hardware, communications science, electronic engineering and more. That’s why this project has been so successful”, says Erik Agrell, Professor in Communications Systems at the Department of Electrical Engineering at Chalmers.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><div><strong>More on the research</strong></div> <div>The research could have huge potential to make future internet usage significantly more energy efficient. It has resulted in several research publications within the three scientific disciplines of optical hardware, electronics systems and communications networks.The research results have been published in multiple articles, including the following three:</div> <div><ul><li><a href="">Phase-coherent lightwave communications with frequency combs</a>, in the journal Nature Communications</li> <li><a href="" target="_blank">Energy-Efficient High-Throughput VLSI Architectures for Product-Like Codes</a>, in the Journal of Lightwave Technology</li> <li><a href="" target="_blank"><span style="background-color:initial">Join</span><span style="background-color:initial">t power-efficient traffic shaping and service provisioning for metro elastic optical networks</span>​</a><span style="background-color:initial">, in the journal IEEE/OSA Journal of Optical Com</span><span style="background-color:initial">munications and Networking, </span><br /></li></ul></div> <div><br /></div> <div>The 5-year research project <a href="">’Energy-efficient optical fibre communication’</a> ran from 2014–2019, and was financed by the Knut and Alice Wallenberg Foundation.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>Some more information on some of the research breakthroughs:</strong></div> <div>Smart, error correcting chips:</div> <div>The data chips have been designed by Chalmers and manufactured in Grenoble in France. The Chalmers researchers subsequently verified the chips’ performance and measured the energy usage, which was just a tenth of current error-correcting chips. </div> <div>At an energy transfer speed of 1 terabyte per second (1 terabyte = 1 trillion bits) <a href="" target="_blank">the researchers demonstrated that the chip drew less energy than 2 picojoules​</a> (1 picojoule = 1 trillionth of a joule) per bit. This equates to a power consumption of 2 Watts at this data rate. Comparatively, the current energy usage at such high transfer speeds is around 50 picojoules per bit, around 50 Watts.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Text: Yvonne Jonsson</div> <div>Portrait photos: Johan Bodell, Chalmers, Laurence L Levin</div> <div><br /></div> <div><div><strong>For more information, contact:</strong></div> <div>Optical hardware: </div> <div><a href="/en/Staff/Pages/Peter-Andrekson.aspx">Peter Andrekson</a>, leader of the research project, and Professor of Photonics at the Department of Microtechnology and Nanoscience at Chalmers University of Technology</div> <div><a href=""></a></div> <div><br /></div> <div>Electronics systems: </div> <div><a href="/en/staff/Pages/perla.aspx">Per Larsson-Edefors</a>, Professor in Computer Engineering at the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at Chalmers <span style="background-color:initial">University of Technology</span></div> <div><a href=""></a></div> <div><br /></div> <div>Communications networks: </div> <div><a href="/en/staff/Pages/erik-agrell.aspx">Erik Agrell​</a>, Professor in Communications Systems at the Department of Electrical Engineering at Chalmers <span style="background-color:initial">University of Technology</span></div> <div><a href=""></a></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial">​</span></div></div></div></div>Thu, 13 Feb 2020 00:00:00 +0100 change day – how to act<p><b>​Hello there Andrei Sabelfeld, Professor at the division of Information Security at Chalmers. January 20, is the annual Password Change Day set to remind us to review and change login to our Internet accounts. We often hear reports of leaked login information, hijacked accounts and are urged to choose a safe password. So how can we keep our accounts secure online?</b></p><strong>​</strong><span style="background-color:initial"><strong>What constitutes a good password?</strong></span><div>A good password is both difficult to guess for someone else and difficult to detect with a password cracker but it’s at the same time easy for the user to remember. Tools for cracking passwords usually test typical patterns using common words in different languages, common passwords and passwords that have leaked before, so those are important factors to consider when choosing a new password.</div> <div>There are various password meters for evaluating passwords, but one should be careful not to share sensitive password information for evaluation by a third party online.</div> <img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Areas%20of%20Advance/Information%20and%20Communication%20Technology/News%20events/CM/AndreiSabelfeld_170x220px.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="" style="margin-right:10px" /><div><br /></div> <div><strong>Why change my password?</strong></div> <div>Unfortunately, password information is often breached. The list is long on companies and authorities, including Sony and Sega, where users' passwords have been leaked and circulated online. Therefore, it is important to change passwords sometimes.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>How often should I change it?</strong></div> <div>It is good to change passwords every now and then, but at the same time you should not change them too often. It is not uncommon that guidelines tell us to change passwords, say every 90 days, but that can be quite confusing for the user. A rule of thumb is to change at least one, but preferably a few times a year and really consider your choice of password so that you can easily remember it, even after changing.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>The security firm Splashdata has listed people's worst passwords, based on millions of leaked and scattered data. The 2019 list is topped by: &quot;123456&quot;, &quot;123456789&quot; and &quot;qwerty&quot;. In fourth place comes “Password”. What do you say about such passwords?</strong></div> <div>Unfortunately, it proves that users sometimes don't care about making stronger passwords. In addition, this shows that it is not always a good idea to rely on password-based authentication mechanisms.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>Many people use the same password for multiple accounts. What is your word on that?</strong></div> <div>The problem with using the same password for multiple accounts is that leaked information about one account is enough to access other accounts with the same password. Different accounts may have different security requirements. Here, your email account is especially important. Because if the attacker manages to access an e-mail account, it is enough to reset the passwords of all accounts linked to that e-mail address. Therefore, one should take passwords for email account especially seriously.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>What do you think about using a password manager?</strong></div> <div>One advantage is that password managers are good at generating strong passwords that the user does not need to remember. At the same time, some of the password managers have been susceptable to attacks. Therefore, one should be careful when choosing a password manager and make sure it is secure. There are both built-in password managers in most browsers and separate password managers that work on different devices.</div> <div><br /></div> <div><strong>To summarize, please give me your three best tips for my new passwords today?</strong></div> <div><ol><li>Try to avoid password-based authentication when possible. Use multifactor authentication, where instead of relying only on a single password, you present different proofs (factors) of your identity to log in. Such factors can be about something you know (for example, a password) combined with something you have (for example, a credit card) or something you are (for example, your fingerprint). Multifactor authentication is already widely used by, for example, the banks, which for their Internet services require either a bank card reader with a PIN code or a registered smartphone with software (Mobile Bank ID), which also requires a PIN code.</li> <li>If you do need a password, make sure to use a secure password manager.</li> <li>If you must come up with your own password, there are techniques to improve security. You often get the advice to use capital letters and special symbols, but such a password can be difficult to remember. One trick is to make up your own rule based on a phrase that is easy to remember. For example, you can pick the first letters of the words from a line in a song that is special to you and combine them with a few special symbols.</li></ol></div> <div><br /></div> <div>Text: Helena Österling af Wåhlberg<br />Photo: Pixabay/Anneli Andersson</div>Mon, 20 Jan 2020 08:00:00 +0100 Berger awarded Wallenberg Academy Fellow<p><b>​Developing complex software for vehicles, telephones, computers or apps, requires managing many different versions or variants of the software. As a Wallenberg Academy Fellow Thorsten Berger will develop methods and tools for the next generation of version control systems that facilitate the age of continuous software development and artificial intelligence.</b></p>​<p><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/DoIT/News/191203_berger-thorsten-foto-markus-marcetic-239px.jpg" alt="Thorsten Berger. Photo: Markus Marcetic." class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" style="margin:5px;width:200px;height:280px" />Thorsten Berger at the Department of Computer Science and Engineering, along with 28 other young researchers, has been awarded the <a href="">Wallenberg Academy Fellow</a>. The grant will facilitate for young researchers in Sweden to make important scientific breakthroughs by obtaining long-term research funding. As a Wallenberg Academy Fellow, Thorsten Berger will create a modern and digital system for handling different versions of software.</p> <p>– I am deeply honored to receive this award, says Thorsten Berger. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all my students and collaborators who contributed to the body of knowledge we established together in this area. I hope my research provides new perspectives on software evolution and contributes to building the software engineering methods and tools of the future.</p> <h2>Software development deeply dependent on version control systems</h2> <p>Software for modern technology is always under development and as such has become a multimillion-dollar industry. Large web hosting companies store source code and offer version control systems, which manage software versions and variants so that innovators can experiment and develop new ideas.</p> <h2>Today's system has to be handled manually</h2> <p>However, a major problem with current version control systems is that they are built upon old structures that were developed in the 1970s. The source code must be copied and saved manually in files and folders. This practice is time-consuming and hardly compatible with modern software development, in which programs are continuously improved, sometimes using artificial intelligence where the machine creates the code itself.</p> <h2>Methods and tools for the next generation of version control systems</h2> <p>Associate Professor Thorsten Berger from the Department of Computer Science and Engineering, will develop a new theory of software evolution as well as methods and tools for the next generation of version control systems. He will reuse the good elements from the contemporary systems and combine them with modern methods from software synthesis and software product lines, in which the software is flexibly put together from a number of different features. The aim is to create a version control system for modern technology that undergoes continuous change.</p> <p><br /></p> <p>Photo: Markus Marcetic</p> <p><br /></p> <p><strong>The Department of Computer Science and Engineering is shared between Chalmers University of Technology and University of Gothenburg.</strong><br /></p> Tue, 03 Dec 2019 12:00:00 +0100 students show the invisible at Universeum<p><b>​60 students from two of CSE&#39;s master programs presented their projects to 4,500 visitors at the Universeum during the exhibition &quot;Showing the Invisible&quot; on October 25-26, 2019.</b></p><p>For the seventh consecutive year, students from CSE's master programme <strong>Interaction Design and Technologies</strong> exhibited their projects at IDXPO, this year students from the <strong>Game Design &amp; Technology</strong> programme participate as well. Since 2016 the exhibition is held at the Universeum, and this year's visitors were able to follow the food's path through the body, test what it is like to be a cyborg and experience the northern lights.</p> <p>You can see more of the exhibition and the projects at <a href=""></a></p> <p>For more information about idxpo, contact <a href="/sv/personal/Sidor/josef-widestrom.aspx">Josef Wideström</a>. </p> Thu, 21 Nov 2019 13:00:00 +0100 participants on the fourth Centre Day<p><b>​With around 130 participants, the fourth joint day of the GigaHertz Centre and ChaseOn also became a success. &quot;We gather Sweden&#39;s industry and academia in wireless research, probably the best in Sweden,&quot; says Jan Grahn, director of the GigaHertz Centre.</b></p><div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/MC2/News/centreday_191106_IMG_8116_665x330.jpg" alt="Picture from Centre Day 2019." style="margin:5px" /><br /><span style="background-color:initial">It was a huge agenda in Palmstedtsalen in the student union building on 6 November. And Gustav Adolf's baking was of course a mandatory element in honor of the day. One new feature for this year was a &quot;poster flash presentation&quot; where all the poster exhibitors held an elevator presentation of about a minute about their respective posters.</span><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div>A number of speakers from Chalmers, the business community, other educational institutions and organisations replaced each other on the stage. Particularly invited keynote speaker was Dr Thomas Merkle from Fraunhofer IAF in Freiburg, Germany. </div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/MC2/News/centreday_191106_IMG_8155_isab_toppbild_750x340.jpg" alt="Picture from Centre Day 2019." style="margin:5px" /><br /><span style="background-color:initial">For the first time, all members of the International Scientific Advisory Board (ISAB) were also gathered, from left to right Christoph ​Mecklenbräuker, TU Vienna, Riana Geschke, Fraunhofer FHR, Christophe Gaquière, Univ. de Lille, IEMN, and Wolfgang Heinrich, FBH, Berlin.</span><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/MC2/News/centreday_191106_wolfgang_IMG_7924_350x305.jpg" alt="Picture from Centre Day 2019." class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" style="margin:5px" />Professor Heinrich also gave a speech explaining why wireless is an ever-present area:</div> <div>&quot;Microwaves are everywhere, even in space. If you want to communicate between galaxies, you can only use microwaves. If you are looking for extraterrestrial life - either human or not - you can only use... that's right! ... microwaves&quot;, he said among other things.</div> <div>He predicted a bright future:</div> <div>&quot;Our biggest challenge is to make millimeter waves 5g-compatible.&quot;</div> <div><br /></div> <div>The Centre Day was organized by the departments Microtechnology and Nanoscience - MC2, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and Engineering. This year the GigaHertz Centre hosted the event.</div> <div>&quot;What is unique about these events is the high industrial participation with Chalmers researchers and students&quot;, says Jan Grahn.</div> <div><br /></div> <div>Text and photo: Michael Nystås</div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"> </span><br /></div> <div><a href="/en/centres/ghz">Read more about the GigaHertz Centre​</a><span style="background-color:initial"> &gt;&gt;&gt;</span><br /></div> <div><br /></div> <div><a href="/en/centres/chaseon">Read more about ChaseOn</a> &gt;&gt;&gt;<span style="background-color:initial">​</span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div> <div><span style="background-color:initial"><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/MC2/News/centreday_191106_IMG_8009_665x330.jpg" alt="Picture from Centre Day 2019." style="margin:5px" /><br /></span><em style="background-color:initial">Jan Grahn, head of the GigaHertz Centre, and Erik Ström, head of ChaseOn, were pleased with the Centre Day 2019.</em><span style="background-color:initial"><br /></span></div>Tue, 19 Nov 2019 10:00:00 +0100 new projects at CSE funded by the Swedish Research Council<p><b>​Eight researchers at the department of Computer Science and Engineering were awarded grants by the Swedish Research Council within the Natural and engineering sciences 2019 call.</b></p><div> &quot;We are very pleased to see that our research is top notch in such a wide range, from computer architecture to type theory, from smart contracts to AI.” says Patrik Johansson, Deputy Head of Department at Computer Science and Engineering at Chalmers and University of Gothenburg. </div> <div> </div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Smart Contract Verification </h2> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div><em><strong><a href="/en/staff/Pages/ahrendt.aspx">Wolfgang Ahrendt</a> is a professor in the Formal Methods division.<br /></strong></em></div> <div> </div> <div> <img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/DoIT/Profile%20pictures/ST/Wolfgang.gif" alt="Wolfgang Ahrendt" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" style="margin:5px;width:150px;height:150px" /></div> <div> </div> <div>Blockchain is an open infrastructure in the internet that records transactions between parties which do not trust each other, without relying on any central authority. The most famous application of blockchain is cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. Another one is 'smart contracts', which are programs automating the exchange of cryptocurrencies and information between parties. If there is any error in the programming of a smart contract, the error can be exploited by malicious users, causing substantial financial damage, in some cases millions of Dollars. </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div>In this project, we will develop methods to verify, with mathematical certainty, whether a smart contract is free of errors. The outcome of the project will contribute to the safety of the arising digital market places.</div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div><strong>Funding: 4 year project grant, total of 4 million SEK.</strong><br /> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Information, Fairness and Socially Beneficial Artificial Intelligence</h2> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <div><em><strong>Christos Dimitrakakis is a docent in the Data Science and AI division. To read more about fairness in artificial intelligence, <a href=""> visit this page</a></strong></em>. <div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/DoIT/Profile%20pictures/CS/Christos.gif" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="Christos Dimitrakakis" style="margin:5px;width:150px;height:194px" /> </div> <div> Artificially intelligent (AI) systems are playing an ever increasing role in society. To ensure that they are beneficial, we must guarantee that they act not only according to the designer's intentions, but also in a way that is fair to all individuals and groups affected by their decisions. Many applications integrate human and AI decisions, such as crowdsourcing, recommendation systems, navigation and autonomous vehicles, as well as decision support systems for credit risk and criminal recidivism. AI systems are also deployed in semi-automated design tools, and diagnostics in medicine. Humans interact with a pre-designed AI, which may be unaware of the motivations, behaviour or knowledge of people. When such an AI is used at scale, it must take into account broader, societal considerations, such as fairness and privacy. Our project will create algorithms for automatically aligning AI behaviour with societal values.</div> <div><strong>Funding: 4 year project grant, total of 4 million SEK</strong>.<br /></div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Context-Infused Automated Software Test Generation</h2> <div><em><strong>Gregory Gay is a senior lecturer in the Software Engineering division. More information about his research is available at <a href=""><br /></a></strong></em><div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/DoIT/Profile%20pictures/SE/Gregory-Gay.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="Gregory Gay" style="margin:5px;width:150px;height:150px" /> Software testing is invaluable in ensuring reliability. It is also difficult and expensive, with serious consequences. Automation is critical in controlling costs and focusing developers. A promising avenue of automation is search-based test generation – the framing of tasks such as input selection as optimization problems. However, current approaches to search-based generation fail to match the effectiveness of human developers because of the use of naive universal strategies to guide input selection. Developers are driven by context – domain, requirements, and past experience. Effective automated test generation requires this context to control &quot;how&quot; code is executed. The next generation of test generation tools must be multi-objective, incorporate domain-specific information, and be adaptable to the system under test. I propose two families of context-infused strategies and a new self-adaptive generation approach that can customize its selection of strategies. These research advances should yield more &quot;human-like&quot; – and human-competitive – results.</div> <div><strong>Funding: 4 year starting grant, total of 3,9 million SEK.</strong><br /></div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Non-Functional Requirements for Machine Learning: Facilitating Continuous Quality Awareness (iNFoRM)</h2> <em><strong><a href="/en/Staff/Pages/jenho.aspx">Jennifer Horkoff</a> is an associate professor in the Software Engineering division. </strong></em><br /><div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/DoIT/Profile%20pictures/SE/Jennifer-Horkoff.png" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="Jennifer Horkoff" style="margin:5px;width:150px;height:150px" /> <div>Machine Learning (ML) uses big data to enable software algorithms to “learn”, solving difficult problems such as recognizing images and diagnosing cancer. Software Engineering (SE) focuses on understanding, decomposing, managing, formalizing and reasoning over software qualities (e.g., performance, reliability, security, maintainability, usability), also called non-functional requirements (NFRs). </div> <div>From an SE perspective, the meaning of certain qualities, how to refine those qualities, and how to use such qualities for design and run time decision making is relatively well established and understood. However, in a context where the solution involves ML, much of our knowledge about NFRs no longer applies. E.g., what does it mean for a ML enabled system to be maintainable, modifiable and testable? How are these qualities measured for an ML solution? Are NFRs such as compatibility and modularity still relevant for ML solutions? Furthermore, new NFRs such as fairness and transparency have become critical from an ML perspective, including knowledge of new NFR tradeoffs, e.g., fairness vs. accuracy. <br /></div> <div>The overall objective of the project is to create a framework to define, decompose, express, monitor, and reason (make tradeoffs) over NFRs for systems involving ML, accounting for the uniqueness of ML solutions compared to typical software.</div> <div><strong>Funding: 4 year project grant, total of 4 million SEK.</strong><br /></div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">X-LEGAL: smart legal contracts <br /></h2> <strong><em><a href="/en/staff/Pages/gersch.aspx">Gerardo Schneider</a> is a professor in the Formal Methods division</em></strong><em><strong>. </strong></em><br /><em><strong></strong></em><div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/DoIT/Profile%20pictures/ST/Gerardo-Schneider2.jpg" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:150px;height:225px" /> <div>This project aims at legal automation, by integrating two notions of &quot;contracts&quot;: legal contracts, i.e., legally binding normative documents establishing mutual agreements between competent and freely participating parties, and &quot;smart contracts&quot;, computer programs executed in the blockchain. The problem today is that smart contracts are not &quot;smart&quot; nor &quot;contracts&quot;. The dream of executable legal contracts is still not a reality but a desirable outcome on blockchain technologies. We will bridge this gap by proposing two languages: one closer to the non-technical users having an explicit and clear presentation of the contractual clauses, the other one closer to executable code but still in connection with the contractual language. </div> <div><strong>Funding: 4 year project grant, total of 4 million SEK.</strong><br /></div></div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">PRIME: Memory that can compute on stored data. </h2> <strong><em><a href="/en/staff/Pages/per-stenstrom.aspx">Per Stenström</a> is a professor in the Computer Engineering division.</em></strong><br /><div><img src="/SiteCollectionImages/Institutioner/DoIT/Profile%20pictures/CE/Per-Stenström.gif" class="chalmersPosition-FloatRight" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:150px;height:195px" /> <div>In today’s computers, most of the time is spent by the central processing unit (CPU) bringing the data from memory, performing the operations and sending the result back to memory. Such systems become very inefficient due to costly data transfers specially for modern applications such as Machine Learning and Big Data analytics, which perform many operations on large amounts of data stored in memory. </div> <div>With this project we exploit adding computation capabilities to the memory so that operations can be performed where the data is stored, thus eliminating the inefficient data transfers. We will develop a new computational model in which code move around instead of data, which is more inefficient. This will yield computer systems with substantially higher processing rates and lower energy consumption.</div> <div><strong>Funding: 4 year project grant, total of 4 million SEK.</strong> </div></div></div></div></div> <div> </div> <div> </div> <h2 class="chalmersElement-H2">Also granted</h2> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Modal type theory with dependent types</h3> <div><em><strong>Andreas Abel, senior lecturer in the Logic and Types division.</strong></em></div> <div><strong>Funding: 4 year project grant, total of 4 million SEK.</strong><br /></div> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Evidence theory and semantics for homotope theory in higher order categories</h3> <div> <em><strong>Christian Sattler, Logic and Types division. </strong></em></div> <div><strong>Funding: 4 year starting grant, total of 3,9 million SEK.</strong><br /></div> <div> </div> <div> </div>Tue, 19 Nov 2019 00:00:00 +0100 better way to catch bugs<p><b>​As software is becoming a key component in every part of society, the consequences and costs of errors in software are daunting. Out of sheer curiosity and playfulness, researchers at Chalmers developed the testing tool QuickCheck, now used by major companies to find and fix crucial bugs in software before it’s released.</b></p>​The cost of software errors is estimated to be over a trillion USD each year worldwide. Perhaps that is why software development companies spend half their effort on testing. Research into new ways of software testing is making it not only better and more efficient but also fun, at least according to professor John Hughes at the department of Computer Science and Engineering. He is one of the brains behind what is called property-based testing. “You’re not working with one test case at a time, you’re working with whole families of test cases. You’re not thinking about what your code should do for this particular input, you’re thinking about what your code should do in general. It’s just a higher level of abstraction. So, one of the strengths of property-based testing is that it’s actually a lot of fun.” <p>In traditional software testing the tester has to compose each test case individually. This is an enormous manual process, even when running the tests is automated. In property-based testing the software developer specifies general properties that the software should satisfy in a wide variety of cases. Examples to test these properties are then chosen automatically, enabling very many tests to be run and more bugs to be found. </p> <p>“And when there are bugs, instead of finding them a couple of weeks after writing the code, you find them just like that” says John, and snaps his fingers. “You see an example of the bug and realize, I never thought of this. Then you can go back and fix the code while it’s still fresh in your mind.”</p> <p><a href=""><img class="ms-asset-icon ms-rtePosition-4" src="/_layouts/images/ichtm.gif" alt="" /> Watch the video of John explaining functional programming</a></p> <p>John has been developing the idea of property-based testing for nearly two decades. Together with Koen Claessen he developed the first property-based testing tool, an open source tool called QuickCheck. It was followed by a commercial version developed by John’s company Quviq.  However, this success was not inevitable. If it hadn’t been for his curiosity and being in the right room at the right time, the idea might not have had the same impact.</p> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">The right idea in the right room</h3> <p>In 1999 John Hughes had just managed to meet an important deadline in his research and was, in his own words, “completely pooped”. With nothing else pressing, he started playing around with a few ideas. “I was just hacking away in my room. One of the ideas was to write properties and then generate random input to perhaps discover the ones that were false.” Koen Claessen, a PhD student in the department at the time, knocked on his door and asked what he was doing. Koen came up with ways to improve the idea, and showed up the next day with some code he’d written.  “I used that and kept hacking and made another version and showed it to him and so forth. We worked on it together and by the end of the week we had a first basic version working.” John says.</p> <p>They co-authored a paper about the research which, after initially being rejected, was published at the International Conference on Functional Programming in 2000. Ten years later they received the Most Influential Paper award at the same conference. “It’s quite funny. Now it’s the most cited paper from the ICFP, ever.” John adds.</p> <p>While the idea was now scientifically recognized, John Hughes didn’t quite realize the importance of the method they’d created until a meeting of SSF’s programme committee in 2005. The foundation asked the researchers they were funding to present their work to representatives from Swedish industry. In the room were both John’s first customer and one of Sweden’s leading entrepreneurs. John’s presentation included a short demo of the QuickCheck tool before he went on to explain other parts of his current research project. “At the end of the presentation Mike Williams from Ericsson basically said, that QuickCheck stuff, we want that.” </p> <p>Also there was serial entrepreneur Jane Walerud. She saw the potential of the idea and advised and pushed John to start a company based on QuickCheck. “I was very excited. I’d worked with my research for a long time and I wanted to see it have industrial impact. This was an opportunity to do just that.”</p> <p>As a result, John Hughes and his colleague Thomas Arts founded the company Quviq AB with the intent of developing, licensing and selling services around the commercial version of QuickCheck. During the next decade, the company would help find software bugs for customers in telecoms, the vehicle industry, healthcare, blockchains, online gaming, and other internet services. </p> <h3 class="chalmersElement-H3">Research goes to work</h3> <p>In 2006 the first commercial application of QuickCheck was at Ericsson, to their Media Proxy product. Several bugs were discovered, among them one that was quite bizarre, but it shows the strengths of property-based testing. The bug was provoked by adding two callers to a multimedia phone call, then removing one and adding another, then removing the third and adding a fourth, then removing the fourth, upon which the product would crash. “An oddly specific scenario like this would never be included in a hand-written test suite. But QuickCheck discovered not only the scenario but also a serious, underlying fault, that data corruption occurred every time a caller was removed from a call.” John explains. Thanks to this, Quviq earned Ericsson as a long-term customer.</p> <p>In 2010 staff from Ericsson were working at the financial service company Klarna. For six weeks they’d been trying to figure out why the main server was crashing every couple of months. Ericsson was responsible for the failing component causing the crashes, each time requiring the database to be restored from a backup, a process which took several hours each time. After weeks of looking for the now notorious bug in the Mnesia database, Ericsson contacted Quviq. “We were able to provoke the bugs in the database using at most six function calls. Once these simple test cases were found, Ericsson was able to fix each bug in less than a day” says John.</p> <p>During the last two years Quviq has been working with IOHK, who run the 13th largest crypto currency, called Cardano. The blockchain was initially built by consultants, but once it was up and running, then IOHK quickly realized there were problems with the quality of the code. Quviq was brought in to help train the 25 developers already using QuickCheck. Errors were found in one of the most crucial functions of the block chain, the allocation of new blocks, which is the way transactions are rercorded. For Cardano this is determined by what is called proof of stake. “You have a number of people that are candidates for committing the next block, and you elect someone to do it, and it’s supposed to be proportional to the stake that they put in. We discovered that because of their poor testing, it wasn’t.” The deviation in proportionality was too small to be significant, but still considered a serious bug since it affected such a crucial function. “They have now improved their testing dramatically, thanks to the work we did with them, and they’re able to link it directly to the theory that their blockchain is based on.”</p> <p>Property-based testing has proven to be somewhat more difficult than regular testing and requires properly trained testers. “But if you have those, I would argue that you save a lot of time, and you get much higher quality code.” John explains. </p> <p>For John the synthesis of research and business has been a rewarding experience. “It’s great to put your research to work for a customer. Then you really find out what works well and what needs improvement. I really like that!”</p> <p><br /></p> <p><strong>The Department of Computer Science and Engineering is shared between Chalmers University of Technology and University of Gothenburg.</strong><br /></p>Mon, 21 Oct 2019 12:00:00 +0200