From Sensitive to Formal Barbaric Systems Biology
Oded Maler often characterized as “barbaric” some of his approaches to solving complex problems. By this, he meant the modern meaning, i.e., “unsophisticated”, for example when he suggested to compute bunch of simulations to approximate reachable sets of dynamical systems - at a time when the trend was to fill pages of fancy theorems in advanced computational geometry or functional analysis. However, it is fair to say that he was in effect a true Barbarian but in the antique sense: Ancient Greeks called “Barbarians” those who were not Greek themselves. As a matter of fact, Oded as a scientist knew no boundaries: he wandered freely between theoretical computer science and applied mathematics, control theory, logics, Physics and Biology, etc. Always with humility, humor, and avid curiosity about local customs and knowledge he would bring in his own extended scientific baggage with genuine intention and efforts to mix in and contribute to the fields he was exploring. Systems Biology was a natural target of these explorations. There he found problems related to hybrid dynamical systems, another cross-field he contributed to pioneer. Together with various collaborators including biologists, both from wet labs and theoreticians, and myself, we experimented with and improved techniques such as systematic simulation and the monitoring of signal temporal logic, an extension of a logic used in program verification adapted to continuous and real-world processes, to help in particular with the difficult problem of parameter uncertainty in the modeling of living systems. I will try to recount some results we obtained and the avenues of research that this work from Oded’s legacy helped create and remain open today.
Sat 6 Apr
|16:00 - 17:00|
Alexandre DonzeUniversity of California, Berkeley
|17:00 - 18:00|
Eugene AsarinIRIF, University Paris Diderot and CNRS, France