2nd CFP New Trends in Cog Sci

Alex Riegler riegler at ifi.unizh.ch
Wed Dec 4 05:54:10 EST 1996


Please forward to colleagues etc.
Apologies if you have received this already.


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                           International Workshop

       N E W   T R E N D S   I N   C O G N I T I V E   S C I E N C E

                                NTCS '97

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                    "Does Representation need Reality?"

            Perspectives from Cognitive Science, Neuroscience,
                     Epistemology, and Artificial Life

                    Vienna, Austria, May 13 - 16, 1997

                           with plenary talks by:
           Georg Dorffner, Ernst von Glasersfeld, Stevan Harnad,
                      Wolf Singer, and Sverre Sjoelander

      organized by the Austrian Society of Cognitive Science (ASoCS)


===========================================================================
     Latest information can be retrieved from the conference WWW-page
            <http://www.univie.ac.at/cognition/ntcs97.htm>
===========================================================================


                                                              P u r p o s e
___________________________________________________________________________

The goal of this single-track conference is to investigate and discuss new
approaches and movements in cognitive science in a workshop-like atmosphere.
Among the topics which seem to have emerged in the last years are:
embodiment of knowledge, system theoretic and computational neuroscience
approaches to cognition, dynamics in recurrent neural architectures,
evolutionary and artificial life approaches to cognition, and
(epistemological) implications for perception and representation,
constructivist concepts and the problem of knowledge representation,
autopoiesis, implications for epistemology and philosophy (of science).

  Evidence for a failure of the traditional understanding of neural
representation converges from several fields. Neuroscientific results in the
last decade have shown that single cell representations with hierarchical
processing towards representing units seems not the way the cortex
represents environmental entities. Instead, distributed cell ensemble coding
has become a popular concept for representation, both in computational and
in empirical neuroscience. However, new problems arise from the new
concepts. The problem of binding the distributed parts into a uniform
percept can be "solved" by introducing synchronization of the member
neurons. A deeper (epistemological) problem, however, is created by
recurrent architectures within ensembles generating an internal dynamics in
the network. The cortical response to an environmental stimulus is no longer
dominated by stimulus properties themselves, but to a considerable degree by
the internal state of the network. Thus, a clear and stable reference
between a representational state (e.g. in a neuron, a Hebbian ensemble, an
activation state, etc.) and the environmental state becomes questionable.
Already learned experiences and expectancies might have an impact on the
neural activity which is as strong as the stimulus itself. Since these
internally stored experiences are constantly changing, the notion of (fixed)
representations is challenged. At this point, system theory and
constructivism, both investigating the interaction between environment and
organism at an abstract level, come into the scene and turn out to provide
helpful epistemological concepts. The goal of this conference is to discuss
these phenomena and their implications for the understanding of
representation, semantics, language, cognitive science, and artificial life.

  Contrary to many conferences in this field, the focus is on
interdisciplinary cooperation and on conceptual and epistemological
questions, rather than on technical details. We are trying to achieve this
by giving more room to discussion and interaction between the participants
(e.g., invited comments on papers, distribution of papers to the
participants before the conference, etc.). According to the
interdisciplinary character of cognitive science, we welcome papers/talks
from the fields of artificial life, empirical, cognitive, and computational
neuroscience, philosophy (of science), epistemology, anthropology, computer
science, psychology, and linguistics.


                                                                T o p i c s
___________________________________________________________________________

The conference is centered around but not restricted to the following
topics:

  1. Representation - epistemological concepts and findings from
     (computational) neuroscience, cognitive science (recurrent neural
     architectures, top-down processing, etc.), and philosophy;

  2. Alternatives to representation - applying constructivism to cognitive
     systems;

  3. Modeling language, communication, and semantics as a dynamical,
     evolutionary and/or adaptive process;

  4. Representation and cognition in artificial life;

  5. What is the role of simulation in understanding cognition?



                                            I n v i t e d   S p e a k e r s
___________________________________________________________________________

Besides submitted papers the conference will also feature plenary talks by
invited speakers who are leaders in their fields. The following is a list
of invited speakers in alphabetical order:

  o Georg Dorffner, Univ. of Vienna (A)
  o Ernst von Glasersfeld, Univ. of Amherst, MA (USA)
  o Stevan Harnad, Univ. of Southampton (GB)
  o Rolf Pfeifer, Univ. of Zurich (CH)
  o Wolf Singer, Max Planck Institut fuer Hirnforschung, Frankfurt (D)
  o Sverre Sjoelander, Linkoeping University (S)



                                          P a p e r   S u b m i s s i o n s
___________________________________________________________________________

We invite submissions of scientific papers to any of the 5 topics listed
above. The papers will be reviewed by the Scientific Committee and accepted
according to their scientific content, originality, quality of presentation,
and relatedness to the conference topic. Please keep to the following
guidelines: Hardcopy submission only, 6-9 pages A4 or USLetter single sided
in Times Roman 10-12pt (or equivalent). Please send 4 copies to the
organizing committee, see address below.

  In a first step we are planning to publish the proceedings as Technical
Report of the Austrian Society for Cognitive Science. In a second step
after rewriting the papers and after a second round of review a major
publisher will be approached to publish the best papers in an edited
volume.

  For the final versions of the accepted papers electronic submissions are
preferred in one of the following formats: Word, FrameMaker, or Ascii.
Detailed formatting information will be given upon notification of
acceptance.

                  Submission due  January 7, 1997
      Notification of acceptance  February 28


                                                    R e g i s t r a t i o n
___________________________________________________________________________

To register please fill out the registration form at the bottom of this CFP
and send it by...

  o Email to franz-markus.peschl at univie.ac.at, or by
  o Fax to +43-1-408-8838 (attn. M.Peschl), or by
  o Mail to Markus Peschl, Dept.for Philosophy of Science (address below)

Registration Fee (includes admission to talks, presentations, and proceedings):

before April 1st, 1997:

  Member *              1000 ATS (about  90 US$)
  Non-Member            1500 ATS (about 135 US$)
  Student Member **      400 ATS (about  36 US$)
  Student Non-Member    1000 ATS (about  90 US$)

after April 1st, 1997:

  Member *              1300 ATS (about 118 US$)
  Non-Member            1800 ATS (about 163 US$)
  Student Member **      500 ATS (about  45 US$)
  Student Non-Member    1300 ATS (about 118 US$)


*) Members of the Austrian Society of Cognitive Science
**) Requires proof of valid student ID



            C o n f e r e n c e   S i t e   a n d   A c c o m o d a t i o n
___________________________________________________________________________

The conference takes place in a small beautiful baroque castle in the
suburbs of Vienna; the address is:

   Schloss Neuwaldegg
   Waldegghofg. 5
   A-1170 Wien
   Austria

   Tel: +43-1-485-3605
   Fax: +43-1-485-3605-112

It is surrounded by a beautiful forest and a good (international and
Viennese gastronomic) infrastructure. On the tram it takes only 20 minutes
to the center of Vienna.

  (Limited) Accommodation is provided by the castle (about 41 US$ per night
(single), 30 US$ per night, per person (double) including breakfast). Please
contact the telephone number above. You can find more information about
Vienna and accommodation at the Vienna Tourist Board or at the Intropa
Travel agent Tel: +43-1-5151-242. Further information will be available
soon.


                                      D e s t i n a t i o n   V i e n n a ?
___________________________________________________________________________

Vienna, Austria, can be reached internationally by plane or train. The
Vienna Schwechat airport is located about 16 km from the city center. From
the airport, the city air-terminal can be reached by bus (ATS 60.- per
person) or taxi (about ATS 400). Rail-passengers arrive at one of the
main stations which are located almost in the city center. From the
air-terminal and the railway stations the congress site and hotels can be
reached easily by underground (U-Bahn), tramway, or bus. A detailed
description will be given to the participants.

  In May the climate is mild in Vienna. It is the time when spring is at its
climax and everything is blooming. The weather is warm with occasional
(rare) showers. The temperature is about 18 to 24 degrees Celsius.

More information about Vienna and Austria on the web:

   Welcome to Vienna Scene
     <http://wtv.magwien.gv.at/e/index.htm>

   Vienna City
     <http://www.atnet.co.at/Tourism/Vienna/>

   Wiener Festwochen - Vienna Festival
     <http://www.infosys.tuwien.ac.at/WF/>

   Public Transport in Vienna (subway)
     <http://metro.jussieu.fr:10001/bin/select/english/austria/vienna>

   Welcome to Austria
     <http://austria-info.at/">

   General information about Austria
     <http://www.atnet.co.at/austria/>

   Austria Annoted
     <http://harvest.Austria.EU.net/Server-in-AT/categories.html>


                                    S c i e n t i f i c   C o m m i t t e e
___________________________________________________________________________

                         R. Born  Univ. of Linz (A)
                     G. Dorffner  Univ. of Vienna (A)
               E. v. Glasersfeld  Univ. of Amherst, MA (USA)
                       S. Harnad  Univ. of Southampton (GB)
                       M. Peschl  Univ. of Vienna (A)
                      A. Riegler  Univ. of Zurich (CH)
                        H. Risku  Univ. of Skovde (S)
                   S. Sjoelander  Linkoeping University (S)
                     A. v. Stein  Neuroscience Institute, La Jolla (USA)


                                    O r g a n i z i n g   C o m m i t t e e
___________________________________________________________________________

                       M. Peschl  Univ. of Vienna (A)
                      A. Riegler  Univ. of Zurich (CH)


                                                        T i m e   t a b l e
___________________________________________________________________________

                  Submission due  January 7, 1997
      Notification of acceptance  February 28
          Early registration due  April 1
                Final papers due  April 14
                 Conference date  May 13-16, 1997


                            S p o n s o r i n g   O r g a n i z a t i o n s
___________________________________________________________________________


  o Christian Doppler Laboratory for Expert Systems
    (Vienna University of Technology)
  o Oesterreichische Forschgungsgemeinschaft
  o Austrian Federal Ministry of Science, Transport and the Arts
  o City of Vienna


                                A d d i t i o n a l   I n f o r m a t i o n
___________________________________________________________________________

For further information on the conference contact:

   Markus Peschl
   Dept. for Philosophy of Science
   University of Vienna
   Sensengasse 8/10
   A-1090 Wien
   Austria

   Tel: +43-1-402-7601/41
   Fax: +43-1-408-8838
   Email: franz-markus.peschl at univie.ac.at

General information about the Austrian Society for Cognitive Science can be
found on the Society webpage <http://www.univie.ac.at/cognition> or by
contacting

   Alexander Riegler
   AILab, Dept. of Computer Science
   University of Zurich
   Winterthurerstr. 190
   CH-8057 Zurich
   Switzerland

   Email: riegler at ifi.unizh.ch


                                          R e g i s t r a t i o n   f o r m
___________________________________________________________________________

I participate at the Workshop "New Trends in Cognitive Science (NTCS'97)"


Full Name

   ........................................................................

Full Postal Address:

   ........................................................................

   ........................................................................

   ........................................................................

Telephone Number (Voice):       Fax:

   ..................................... ..................................

Email address:

   ........................................................................


[ ] I intend to submit a paper


Payment in ATS (= Austrian Schillings; 1 US$ is currently about 11 ATS).
This fee includes admission to talks, presentations, and proceedings:

Before April 1st, 1997:

   [ ] Member *                1000 ATS (about  90 US$)
   [ ] Non-Member              1500 ATS (about 135 US$)
   [ ] Student Member **        400 ATS (about  36 US$)
   [ ] Student Non-Member      1000 ATS (about  90 US$)

After April 1st, 1997:

   [ ] Member *                1300 ATS (about 118 US$)
   [ ] Non-Member              1800 ATS (about 163 US$)
   [ ] Student Member **        500 ATS (about  45 US$)
   [ ] Student Non-Member      1300 ATS (about 118 US$)

*) Members of the Austrian Society of Cognitive Science
**) Requires proof of valid student ID


Total: .................... ATS

   [ ] Visa
   [ ] Master-/Eurocard

       Name of Cardholder ........................................

       Credit Card Number ........................................

       Expiration Date .................



Date: ................  Signature: ........................................



Please send this form by...

  o Email to franz-markus.peschl at univie.ac.at, or by
  o Fax to +43-1-408-8838 (attn. M.Peschl), or by
  o Mail to Markus Peschl, Dept.for Philosophy of Science,
    Univ. of Vienna, Sensengasse 8/10, A-1090 Wien, Austria





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