Greg WelchSunday, 13:00

Greg Welch

Florida Hospital Endowed Chair in Healthcare Simulation
University of Central Florida

Greg Welch is the Florida Hospital Endowed Chair in Healthcare Simulation at the University of Central Florida (UCF) with appointments in the College of Nursing, Computer Science Department, and the Institute for Simulation & Training. Welch is also the Co-Director of both the UCF Synthetic Reality Laboratory and the Interactive Systems & User Experience Research Cluster at UCF, and an AdjunctProfessor in the Department of Computer Science at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

In 1986 he received a degree in Electrical Engineering Technology from Purdue University (with Highest Distinction), and in 1996 a Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Prior to coming to UCF, Welch was a Research Professor at UNC. He also worked on the Voyager Spacecraft Project at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and on airborne electronic countermeasures at Northrop-Grumman’s Defense Systems Division.

Welch conducts research in virtual and augmented reality, human-computer interaction, human motion tracking, and computer graphics and vision, with a focus on healthcare related applications. Welch co-developed the HiBall Tracker, which was sold commercially around the world for many years. He has co-developed systems for healthcare training and practice, including physical-virtual patient simulators, and systems for 3D capture and display of patients for remote medical consultation. To capture human behaviors during experimental interactions he developed a laboratory-based Human-Surrogate Interaction Space (HuSIS). He has co-authored over 100 publications, and is a co-inventor on multiple patents. He is an Associate Editor for the journals Presence: Teleoperators and Virtual Environments and Frontiers in Virtual Environments, and has co-chaired numerous international conferences, workshops, and seminars. He maintains an internationally-recognized web site dedicated to the Kalman filter, the most popular stochastic algorithm used for calculating position, orientation and velocity of moving objects. Welch is a member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (Senior Member), the Association for Computing Machinery, the European Association for Computer Graphics (Eurographics), the Southern Nursing Research Society, the International Nursing Association for Clinical Simulation & Learning, and the Society for Simulation in Healthcare.

Abstract of Mr. Welch’s talk:

Bridging the Telepresence Valley

Humans have been representing other humans in the context of acting for over 2,500 years. For at least 500 years we have been using technology to create human surrogates. For example, in the mid 1500s Leonardo da Vinci was designing and building mechanical animatronic humans, and in the mid 1900s we began using electromechanical technology to represent other humans, including both audio-animatronic humans such as pioneered by Walt Disney, and virtual humans created by computer graphics. Technological human surrogates are used in circumstances including education, training, and telepresence for domains such as defense, healthcare, entertainment, and reference services.

In the context of such technological human surrogates, there exists a relatively popular hypothesis often referred to as the uncanny valley. The hypothesis, offered by Masahiro Mori in 1970, refers to the revulsion (disgust) one might feel if the appearance and behavior of a human surrogate is almost, but not quite, realistic. And yet, evidence exists to support a related hypothesis that any such revulsion is less apparent, or even absent, when the human surrogates are “inhabited” by a real human, as in the case of telepresence.

However, telepresence introduces a unique phenomenon that one might call the telepresence valley—a metaphorical valley separating one person from another in a telepresence situation. This is not a valley of revulsion, but more a valley of repulsion. In a sense one wants to bring the remote people together to a common place, yet many environmental, technological, psychological, and social factors constantly “pull” each person back into their distinct remote environments. The valley can be “jumped” by conscious effort on the parts of the participants, or “shrunken” by minimizing perceptual differences. In this talk we will discuss telepresence, the valley, and some novel mechanisms aimed at “bridging” the valley such that geographically separated individuals may naturally feel as if they are together, able to share information in work and everyday life situations as effectively as if they were face-to-face.


Markus Bundschus

Monday, 10:30

Markus Bundschus

Roche Diagnostics
Head Scientific & Business Information Services

Markus Bundschus has served as the Head of Scientific & Business Information Services at Roche Diagnostics Bavarian Site (Penzberg) since June 2010. Roche Penzberg is one of the largest biotechnology centers in Europe. For decades, scientists in Penzberg have researched, developed, and produced new biopharmaceutical ingredients (biologicals) as well as diagnostics. People often underestimate the importance of diagnostics, but they are the basis for the doctor’s choice of treatment. The path to a successful diagnostic tool is simpler than the path to an effective medication, but it is still a long lasting puzzle.

Markus is keen on building bridges between industry and research and has been applying information and technology to create knowledge that  contributes to the development of diagnostic tools for this major biotechnology company.  Markus holds a master’s degree in Bioinformatics from the Technical University of Munich and a Doctor of Philosophy in Informatics from Ludwig-Maximilians Universität München.  His research interests include Data Science,  Machine Learning, Data Mining, Information Retrieval, Bioinformatics, Semantic Web, Text mining, and Document Modeling.

He has served as an external reviewer for journals including Bioinformatics and IEEE Transactions on Knowledge and Data Engineering (TKDE ) as well as the following conferences: SIGKDD Conference on Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining, International Conference on Machine Learning and the European Conference on Machine Learning.   Marcus is a member of  Pharma Documentation Ring a think tank of information and knowledge-management professionals representing major research-based pharmaceutical companies.

Abstract of Mr. Bundschus’ talk:

Text and Data Mining Meets Biomedical Research

Even though Text and Data Mining is part of the technology portfolio for many years in the industry, only recently it is shifting from being a niche player towards becoming an integral part of business critical processes. The range of applications is huge and diverse in pharmaceutical companies – from traditional use cases such as drug and biomarker discovery, analyzing clinical trials, or optimizing biotechnological production processes, to finding key opinion leaders, among others. Given the unprecedented growth of scientific knowledge represented in written documents, there are currently not so many alternatives in the future to these types of automated processing techniques.

Marcus will discuss a strategy on how to successfully implement text mining projects in a challenging industrial setting outlining design criteria tand selected use cases. The presentation will include open research questions that would be important to be tackled from the industry perspective. Among others this will include important open issues in full text mining (e.g. proper text segmentation) or the current lack of linking the literature systematically back to publicly available biobanks.