Symposium L. Self-* Systems – Biological Foundations and Technological Applications

Part 1. Biologically and Socially Inspired Self-* Systems

Chairs: Vesna Sesum-Cavic, Institute of Computer Languages, Vienna University of Technology, Vienna, Austria, and Carlos Gershenson, Instituto de Investigaciones en Matemáticas y en Sistemas, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Mexico City, Mexico

Call for papers

The increased complexity in today’s’ IT industry is one of the top problems and important obstacles. Self-organization appears as one promising way to cope with the increased complexity. Generally, self-* systems should posses as many self-* properties as possible (self-healing, self-tuning, self-learning,…) in order to achieve self-organization. Self-organization surrounds us. Many interesting self-mechanisms exist in our environment from which we can learn a lot. A careful observation of mechanisms in nature and society can discover some new tools that could beneficially be applied to different IT-problems. This conference track will focus on both biologically and socially based self-* systems. The papers could be theoretically based as well as with practical applications to important IT-problems.

Part 2. Self-Organizing Networked Systems

Chairs: Wilfried Elmenreich, Networked and Embedded Systems, Alpen-Adria-Universität Klagenfurt, Austria, and Carlos Gershenson, Instituto de Investigaciones en Matemáticas y en Sistemas, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Mexico City, Mexico

Part 2 of this symposium will present and discuss current and novel approaches for applications of self-organizing systems.

A self-organizing system typically consists of many networked entities that organize themselves and cooperate through the exchange of information without the need of a centralized control instance but using a distributed approach. Information is exchanged locally among individual entities in the frame of the fulfillment of a certain global objective. Some simple and high-level rules in the individual entities lead to sophisticated functionality of the overall system. Many examples of successful distributed localized organization can be found in nature (e.g., ants, fireflies).

Self-organizing systems have various favorable properties:

  • They typically adapt very easily to changes from inside and outside the system.
  • Additional entities can be added and will be assimilated into the global system.
  • Entities may be removed without too much affect on the global system, and other entities may take over crucial tasks of them.
  • Furthermore, self-organizing systems scale very well and there is no bottleneck of a central authority.

Research into self-organizing networked systems not only has technical and user-oriented aims, it also enables a high degree of interdisciplinarity.

We encounter self-organizing systems on an almost daily basis in:

  • the formations of swarms of fish and migratory birds
  • the interplay of termites when they build their hills
  • the activity of body cells during the healing of wounds.

In many areas of nature, single individuals or organisms work together without central coordination, but in perfect harmony. Large areas of the economy have already been functioning for many years according to this paradigm.

It is the aim of this symposium to create a forum for exchanging ideas, discuss solutions and share experiences among researchers and developers of self-organizing systems applications.


Session 1 (Chair: Wilfried Elmenreich)

  • Barry McMullin, Tomonori Hasegawa: Von Neumann Redux: Revisiting the Self-referential Logic of Machine Reproduction using the Avida World 
  • Vesna Sesum-Cavic, Milan Tuba, Sinisa Rankov: The Influence of Self-Organization on Reducing Complexity in Information Retrieval
  • Sander van Splunter, Bernard van Veelen: Coordination and Self-Organisation in Crisis Management

Session 2 (Chair: Vesna Cavic)

  • Carlos Gershenson: Living in Living Cities
  • Anita Sobe, Wilfried Elmenreich, Manfred del Fabro: Self-organizing content sharing at social events 
  • Istvan Fehervari, Wilfried Elmenreich, Evsen Yanmaz: Evolving a Team of Self-organizing UAVs to Address Spatial Coverage Problems

Session 3 (Chair: Carlos Gershenson)

  • Guided discussion: Challenges and Opportunities of Self-organizing Systems