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Automated Experimentation

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International Conference on Automated Experimentation 2011

The popular image of traditional science involves researchers toiling laboriously over laboratory experiments, driven by the desire to establish definitive and permanent results. Modern natural sciences, applied sciences, e-Science, and Web science provide more opportunities for yet larger series of experiments. Demand for experimental results also has become more diverse, requiring results that have direct connections to systems outside the laboratory. With this has come an ability to automate many areas of experimental science, not only the experiments themselves but also the larger processes that contribute to experimentation and analysis more broadly. Our aim is to bring together the diverse forms of automated experimentation and, by studying them in an abstract but practical way, understand how they generalise across domains. In this way we hope to promote new styles of computationally inspired experimental thinking. For example:

  • Formal process languages allow rapid replication and enactment of experimental designs;
  • Service and grid architecture permit experimental data to be shared in large volume;
  • Roboticised laboratory systems permit fast translation of experiments to the physical world;
  • Verification methods allow experimental protocols to be more rigoriously tested;
  • Systems are available for maintaining experimental context, such as provenance of data; and
  • Systems exist to chart broader requirements and argumentation surrounding experiments.

The main objectives of this multidisciplinary conference are to:

  1. identify relevant methodologies and technologies that would enable automated scientific experimentation,
  2. survey test protocols and guidelines for conducting and reporting automated experiments, and
  3. establish an international network of research collaboration with universities and institutes for conducting automated experimentation research.

Best papers from this conference will be selected to publish in the Automated Experimentation journal, which is a new open-access journal published by the BioMed Central.

The scientific programme will be announced soon. If you have any relevant manuscripts to present in this conference, please feel free to contact us.

International Workshop on Automated Experimentation

23-24 February 2010

This workshop was held as part of an e-Science Institute theme on Automated Experimentation led by Dave Robertson (principal contact, University of Edinburgh), Stephen Oliver (University of Cambridge), Jano van Hemert (University of Edinburgh) and Siu-wai Leung (University of Macau).


23 February 2010

Open Lecture (e-Science Institute, 15 South College Street, Edinburgh EH8 9AA)

16:00 – 17:00 Dave Robertson (Edinburgh) Automated Experimentation as a Means to Promote Computational Thinking in the Sciences

19:30 – 21:30 Workshop dinner at Hotel du Vin

24 February 2010

Workshop (Informatics Forum, 10 Crichton Street, Edinburgh EH8 9AB)

08:30 – 08:50 Registration; Coffee and Tea

08:50 – 09:00 Dave Robertson (Edinburgh) [Opening]

Session 1: Protocol-based Biomedical Informatics

09:00 – 09:30 Maurizio Marchese (Trento) Automated experimentation in social informatics

09:30 – 10:00 Srinandan Dasmahapatra (Southampton) Mechanism, causality and experiments in systems biology

10:00 – 10:30 Marco Schorlemmer (Barcelona) Peer-to-peer proteomics: a novel form of data sharing for protein identification

10:30 – 11:00 Dietlind Gerloff (Santa Cruz) Automated experimentation in biological & bioinformatics practice: opportunity or challenge

11:00 – 11:30 Coffee and Tea

Session 2: Clinical Protocols and Guidelines

11:30 – 12:00 Jeremy Wyatt (Dundee) Randomised trials and automated experiments

12:00 – 12:30 Liz Black (Oxford) Argumentation in automated experimentation

12:30 – 13:00 Paul Groth (Amsterdam) Background knowledge for automated experimentation: provenance and publications

13:00 – 14:00 Lunch

Session 3: Protocol-based Biomedical Experimentation

14:00 – 14:30 Jan Top (Wageningen) Sharing knowledge in food research

14:30 – 15:00 Meihua Yang (Beijing) Quality control and safety evaluation of Chinese medicine

15:00 – 15:30 Siu-wai Leung (Macao) Identification and assessment of scientific evidence: why Chinese medicine?

15:30 - 16:00 Dave Robertson (Edinburgh) General discussion

16:00 – 16:30 Coffee and Tea

Session 4: Protocols for Automated Experimentation

16:30 – 17:30 Dave Robertson (Edinburgh) Discussion on the research theme and the organisation of the conference in October, 2010

17:30 Closing

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