J6′ 2nd Spring School for “Studies on Intelligence & Cognition” SICS-COOL: “FUTURE APPLICATIONS OF COGNITIVELY INSPIRED AI”

The Joint Exploratory Society for Interdisciplinary and Cognitive Studies (abbreviated JESICS) is a German-Egyptian research society that is being funded by the DAAD within the German-Arab Research partnerships since January 2015. The mission of JESICS is to maintain an active research and educational society that fosters the advancement in artificial intelligence and cognitive science.

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As one of the new activities of JESICS, and to further support the initiation and migration of the interest in interdisciplinary studies, JESICS proudly organizes the second interdisciplinary spring school in Cairo, Egypt, during the period 14–18/April/2018.

(N.B. The first interdisciplinary spring school in Cairo, Egypt, has been organized during the period 25–30/March/2017).

The school lays the foundational background in interdisciplinary and cognitive studies for interested, young Egyptians who think to pursue interdisciplinary research but lack the guidance or the opportunity so far. During the school days, the participants learn about a plethora of topics closely related to cognitive science (CogSci) & artificial intelligence (AI), delivered by prestigious figures in the respective fields from allover the world. The school is rich of interesting topics, international experts, and social activities.

Cognitive Computing:

The focus of the school is on interdisciplinary studies that quintessentially contribute to the cognitive computing paradigm. The delivered lessons generally belong to one or more of fields such as: Artificial Intelligence (AI), Knowledge Representation & Reasoning (KRR), Computational Neuroscience, Machine Learning, Cognitive Modeling, Computer Vision, Computational Linguistics, Human-Computer Interaction (HCI), etc.

It goes without saying that the school does not provide an exhaustive overview over each and every subject related to cognitive computing. The intended level of the presented lectures is basic and introductory, with some specific workshop sessions dedicated to demonstrations on the delivered lectures. This kind of mix simply attracts the attention of interested researchers and sheds some light to these fields.

Attendees in seminar room
The Mathematics Department Seminar room hosted part of the 2nd JeSICS Spring School’s activities.

Subjects, Speakers, and the Schedule:

The lectures of the 2nd version of 6-cool give a broad overview on interdisciplinary issues related to “Future Applications of Cognitively Inspired AI”. This includes:

  1. Artificial Intelligence (AI + KRR),
  2. Machine Learning,
  3. Cognitive Modeling (CogMod),
  4. Human-Computer Interaction (HCI), and
  5. Computational approaches to cognitive science (CogSci).

Here is the current list of confirmed teachers:

  1. Prof. Dr. Kai-Uwe Kühnberger (University of Osnabrück, Germany).
  2. Prof. Dr. Martin V. Butz (University of Tübingen, Germany).
  3. Prof. Dr. Haythem O. Ismail (Cairo University & the German University in Cairo, Egypt).
  4. Dr. Felix Weber (University of Osnabrück, Germany).
  5. Dr. Stefan Schneider (University of Osnabrück, Germany).
  6. Dr. Wael Zakaria (Ain Shams University, Cairo, Egypt).
  7. Dr. Ahmed M. H. Abdelfattah (Ain Shams University, Cairo, Egypt).
Cog Sci Lex
Prof. Martin V. Butz (Uni. Tübingen)

And, here is a list of selected material provided by the teachers:

  1. Eye-tracking lectures (day 1).
  2. A Computational Perspective on Mind and Brain. (day 1)
  3. Eye-tracking lectures (day 2).
  4. A Computational Perspective on Mind and Brain. (day 2)
  5. Other shared DropBox material for the lab practical sessions.
  6. A Computational Perspective on Mind and Brain. (day 3)
  7. Knowledge Representation features in SNePS.
  8. Sketching and sketch recognition.
  9. Dynamic Assembly of Figures in Visuospatial Reasoning..
  10. EEG in medical applications (project).
Eye-tracking Lecture
Dr. Felix Weber (Uni. Osnabrück)

The Schedule:

The school opens on Saturday, the 14th of April, 2018, at 1:30pm after a gathering breakfast organized by the Mathematics Department at the Faculty of Science, Ain Shams University. After the short opening talks, two more lecture sessions follow on that same day. There are generally three lecture sessions on each of the following weekdays of the school’s week (except on Wednesday, which is reserved for the social activities). To continuously urge interesting discussions and social activities of several kinds, the sessions on each day interleave with three breaks inbetween (where the middle break from 11:30am to 1:00pm is a coffee break).

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A group photo of the participants and teachers.
The last day of the school is Tuesday, 17-April-2018, where we conclude the school by an open discussion after the lectures, and then hand-on the certificates of attendance and appreciation. A group photo at the main entrance of the Faculty of Science’s building is shown.

The Social Day: Moving Around Cairo and Alexandria

There are no classes of 6-cool on Wednesday, 18-April-2018. This is a day fully dedicated to social activities. There is a planned group trip by an air-conditioned bus to visit Cairo’s most interesting places (namely, the Pyramids, the Egyptian Museum, and the Citadel of Qaitbay in Alexandria).

The trip is followed by a group lunch on Al-Azhar Park.

Cairo at night
Cairo at night (from Al-Azhar Park, Cairo)

Venue:

The school is held at the AI & Cog Sci Lab., Mathematics Department, Faculty of Science, Ain Shams University, Cairo, Egypt.

Application Procedure [closed]: 

[N.B. Registration is currently CLOSED!]

Participation is free of charge for the interested Egyptian undergraduate students as well as the Egyptian researchers in their first years of postgraduate studies (from all related field).

Interested young Egyptians may apply by sending an application message to Dr. Ahmed M. H. Abdel-Fattah at jesics@sci.asu.edu.eg. The application message must include the contact information of a reference professor who will be contacted to recommend and confirm the participation of the applicant. [N.B. We hope that potential applicants appreciate that both our efforts to organize the school as well as their participation decisions are serious issues. A considerable amount of effort, people, money, hours of preparations, contacts, etc., have been –and will be– devoted to delivering the school and making it available for free. An applicant’s mere intention of participation is not enough; they need to prove that they took an educated, serious decision, which they intend to commit to and not waste any resources invested by others.]

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Acknowledgements

We’d like to express our gratitude and thanks to everyone who helped and supported the event. People in the following non-exhaustive list particularly contributed a lot. Others thankfully helped in making the event achievable, either by presentation, preparation, fund, or support in other ways:

  • Prof. Dr. Ahmed A. Ismail (Dean of the Faculty of Science, Ain Shams University),fos
  • Prof. Dr. Kai-Uwe Kühnberger (University of Osnabrück, Germany).
  • Prof. emeritus Fayed F. M. Ghaleb (Ain Shams University).
  • The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD). -daad-.jpg
  • University of Osnabrück, Germany. -uos-.jpg
  • The Mathematics Department at the Faculty of Science, Ain Shams University.

… and the team members of the JESICS group. We also thank you for visiting and reading this page.

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