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On June 3rd and 4th, 2019, I attended the second meeting "Research and Teaching in China" co-organized by the DAAD, the [Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst], i.e., the German Academic Exchange Service [德国学术交流中心], and the German Consulate General in Shanghai. Similar to the first meeting in Beijing, there was a great attendance of about 60 German researchers who live, work, study, and teach in China. I had the chance to meet and talk with researchers from such diverse fields as material science, social science, law, water science, spatial planning, mathematics, theoretical computer science, city planning, project management, chemistry, agriculture, and bio-informatics. This second meeting again shows how strongly the science communities of China and Germany are connected and how much exchange is taking place for the benefit of both of our countries, from the level of young researchers up to the very top-level of senior and world-leading experts. I want to wholehearted thank both the team of the German Consulate General and the DAAD, who did a marvelous job in organizing this meeting. On one hand, there were there many highly interesting talks, discussing topics such as cross-cultural project management as well as research funding opportunities in China. On the other hand, us attendees also had plenty of opportunities for socializing and personal discussions. After a very nice opening ceremony in the residency of the German Consulate General on June 3rd, the talks on June 4th took place in the beautiful meeting room in the 40th floor of the Kunlun Jingan Hotel, granting a perfect view on Shanghai. In summary, I am very thankful for the opportunity to attend this meeting and I hope that many such meetings will follow.

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Today, we had the honor to host excellent talks by two outstanding researchers. Prof. Dr. Dachuan Xu [徐大川] from the School of Mathematics and Physics [北京工业大学数理学院] of the Beijing University of Technology (BJUT) [北京工业大学] presented his work on "Streaming Submodular Maximization under Noise." Prof. Dr. Xiaoyan Zhang [张晓岩] from the School of Mathematical Sciences [南京师范大学数学科学学院] of the Nanjing Normal University (NNU) [南京市仙林大学] gave a talk on his results on the "Max-3-Cut with Limited Unbalance and Application via Complex Semidefinite Programming." These two talks were a highlight for our team and colloquium and were followed by inspiring discussions. We want to thank again both speakers for their visit and their presentations.

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Our team warmly welcomes Mr. Lalin Heng, lecturer at the Department of Information Technology and Communication of the Institute of Technology of Cambodia (ITC) [វិទ្យាស្ថានបច្ចេកវិទ្យាកម្ពុជា] in Phnom Penh [ភ្នំពេញ], Cambodia [កម្ពុជា] for a research stay from February to March 2019. Mr. Heng has received his Master of Electrical Engineering with specialization in Information Technology in 2017 from the Gadjah Mada University, Yokyakarta, Indonesia and holds two Bachelor degrees, a Bachelor of Engineering in Computer Science also from ITC (2015) and a Bachelor of Education in TEFL from the Institute of Foreign Languages (IFL) of the Royal University of Phnom Penh (RUPP) [សាកលវិទ្យាល័យភូមិន្ទភ្នំពេញ], Phnom Penh, Cambodia (2018). He holds several professional certificates in computer networking both from Cisco and Huawei and has gathered work experience in several internships in this field, too. He has published four academic papers on routing and cell selection. The research interests of Mr. Heng include computer networks and security, which are important areas of application of optimization and computational intelligence. His work and interests are therefore closely related to the Distributed Computing research field of our institute. We are is looking forward to working with Mr. Heng. Welcome to Hefei University!

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On Wednesday, 2019-01-30, we presented our paper "An Improved Generic Bet-and-Run Strategy with Performance Prediction for Stochastic Local Search," co-authored by Thomas Weise, Zijun Wu, and Markus Wagner at the Thirty-Third AAAI Conference on Artificial Intelligence (AAAI-19).

Thomas Weise, Zijun Wu, and Markus Wagner. An Improved Generic Bet-and-Run Strategy with Performance Prediction for Stochastic Local Search. Proceedings of the Thirty-Third AAAI Conference on Artificial Intelligence (AAAI 2019), January 27 – February 1, 2019, Honolulu, Hawaii, USA. Palo Alto, CA, USA: AAAI Press. accepted for publication

The conference was very nice and interesting. The seven sessions on "Search, Constraint Satisfaction and Optimization" as well as the ten sessions on "Game Theory and Economic Paradigms" showed that our research fields are core topics at one of the most important venues on soft computing. It was very nice presenting our work in such a context and we had several interesting discussions with interested researchers.

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The paper submission deadline of the 2019 IEEE Congress on Evolutionary Computation has been extended until January 31, 2019. As a result, we are happy to announce that there are also two more weeks for authors to submit their papers to our Special Session on Benchmarking of Evolutionary Algorithms for Discrete Optimization (BEADO).

Evolutionary Computation (EC) is a huge and expanding field, attracting more and more interests from both academia and industry. It includes a wide and ever-growing variety of optimization algorithms, which, in turn, are applied to an even wider and faster growing range of different problem domains, including discrete optimization. Benchmarking is the engine driving research in the fields of Evolutionary Algorithms (EAs) for decades, while its potential has not been fully explored. With our special session, we want to bring together experts on benchmarking, evolutionary computation algorithms, and discrete optimization and provide a platform for them to exchange findings, to explore new paradigms for performance comparison, and to discuss issues such as

  • modelling of algorithm behaviors and performance
  • visualizations of algorithm behaviors and performance
  • statistics for performance comparison (robust statistics, PCA, ANOVA, statistical tests, ROC, …)
  • evaluation of real-world goals such as algorithm robustness, and reliability
  • theoretical results for algorithm performance comparison
  • comparison of theoretical and empirical results
  • new benchmark problems
  • the comparison of algorithms in “non-traditional” scenarios such as
    • multi- or many-objective domains
    • parallel implementations, e.g., using GGPUs, MPI, CUDA, clusters, or running in clouds
    • large-scale problems or problems where objective function evaluations are costly
    • dynamic problems or where the objective functions involve randomized simulations or noise
  • comparative surveys with new ideas on
    • dos and don'ts, i.e., best and worst practices, for algorithm performance comparison
    • tools for experiment execution, result collection, and algorithm comparison
    • benchmark sets for certain problem domains and their mutual advantages and weaknesses

Please visit the special session website for more information. Here you can download the BEADO Special Session Call for Papers (CfP) in PDF format and here as plain text file.

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