Life, an instruction manual

How algorithms shape our lives? B·Debate and "La Caixa" Foundation invite us to learn the secrets and potential of these very human tools

On May 14, 21, 28 and June 4, 2014, the new series of B·DEBATE "Life, instructions. How algorithms shape our life" will be held in Cosmocaixa (Isaac Newton 26, Barcelona). 

Algorithms are groups of instructions that are used to execute problem-solving tasks. Since ancient Babylonia, 4,500 years ago, humanity has developed mathematical theorems based on algorithmic calculations to find systematic solutions to problems of all kinds and levels of complexity. Today their number and fields of application are endless. 

Our daily life is completely enveloped and conditioned by activities that are only possible thanks to algorithms. The appliances we use to make breakfast, the current economic/financial situation and the weather report in the newspaper, the phones and devices we use to communicate, the therapeutic and diagnostic equipment healthcare professionals use to heal us, the search engines we use online, the alarms and cameras that watch over us and keep us safe, the most sophisticated espionage tools, the complex machinery used to design and construct buildings, planes, roads, and all research activity, require algorithms to generate new knowledge and new technology. In short, our knowledge-based economic model is nourished by and needs the development of algorithms. 

Wednesday 14  May · Information and history
An approach to algorithms, from ancient Greece to Wall Street
Pilar Bayer, Professor of Algebra at the University of Barcelona

Wednesday 21 May · Instructions and money
The algorithms in the economy and industry
José García Montalvo, Professor of Economics. University Pompeu Fabra
Eugenio Oñate, director of the Center for Numerical Methods 

Wednesday 28 May · Instructions and biology
The algorithms in life sciences
Modesto Orozco, director of Life Sciences at the Barcelona Supercomputing Centre
Javier Macia, researcher at the Laboratory of Complex Systems, University Pompeu Fabra

Wednesday, June 4 · Looking ahead: new instructions
Beyond classical algorithms: encryption algorithms and quantum cryptography
Antonio Acín, leader of Group Theory of Quantum Information, Institute of Photonic Sciences (ICFO)

All sessions start at 7 PM, will be held in the CosmoCaixa Barcelona Agora Room and cost 4€ per session (2€ "La Caixa" customers). Ticket sales on this link

Further information: B·DEBATE


Publication date: Wednesday, 14 May 2014
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