Pursuing the research objective of a more unified and democratic social media ecosystem

Facebook, Twitter and Co. are centralised platforms that are owned by private corporations and that control the respective networks unilaterally. An international project financed by EU-H2020 under the project leadership of Radu Prodan (University of Klagenfurt) aims to create a decentralised social media ecosystem using blockchain technology.

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Finding faults in Excel

A familiar situation for many: A large Excel file that includes many sheets, rows and columns – and in the end, the correct result stubbornly refuses to materialize. Troubleshooting can be complicated whenever numerous formulas and references are involved. Patrick Koch is working on the project “Debugging of spreadsheet programs (DEOS)”, funded by the FWF, which aims to simplify the search for errors. He recently received the “ACM SIGSOFT Distinguished Paper Award” for his publication on this subject.

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Firefly synchronization of a robot swarm

In a recent video posted on Youtube, Agata Gniewek and Michał Barciś  (supervisor in the Karl Popper Kolleg “Networked Autonomous Aerial Vehicles”: Christian Bettstetter) present viewers with a firefly synchronization. We asked them to tell us a little bit more.

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Andrea Tonelleo was honored with the Aerospace Best Paper Award

Stochastic Trajectory Generation Using Particle Swarm Optimization for Quadrotor Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) has been selected as the best research article published in 2017 in the MDPI Aerospace journal. The paper is co-authored by Babak Salamat and Andrea Tonello. It provides a realistic stochastic trajectory generation method for unmanned aerial vehicles. It offers a tool for the emulation of trajectories in typical flight scenarios, for instance, flight level, takeoff-mission-landing, and collision avoidance with complex maneuvering. The trajectories for these scenarios are implemented with quintic B-splines, which grants smoothness in the second-order derivatives of the Euler angles and accelerations. In order to tune the parameters of the quintic B-spline in the search space, a multi-objective optimization method called particle swarm optimization (PSO) is used. The proposed technique satisfies the constraints imposed by the configuration of the UAV. Further constraints can be introduced such as: obstacle avoidance, speed limitation, and actuator torque limitations due to the practical feasibility of the trajectories.

In the domain of aerial robotics, there is a large body of literature on path planning  and flight control. However, to assess performance, for instance of navigation algorithms, the trajectories followed by the moving aerial vehicle must be generated with a statistically representative emulator. In this paper, we have provided a new seminal idea on how to do so, and we believe that the results can open the door to a novel methodology to develop stochastic trajectory generator – prof. Tonello says.

Publications: Babak Salamat and Andrea M. Tonello. Stochastic trajectory generation using particle swarm optimization for quadrotor unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).  Aerospace 2017, 4(2), 27. Aerospace best paper awards 2017 – Editorial. Aerospace 2018, 5(2), 61.

“Can we fly this on Mars?” Mars helicopter joins Mars Mission

When JPL-NASA staff member Stephan Weiss demonstrated his drone navigation technology during a flight demonstration in 2013, Charles Elachi, head of JPL at the time, asked him: “Can we fly this on Mars?” This marked the beginning of a successful development story, which will shortly culminate in the Mars Mission 2020 deployment of an adapted version of the drone flight technology developed by Weiss, who is now a professor at the Alpen-Adria-Universität. 

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Artificially intelligent metal detector for the needle in the haystack of knowledge

There are individuals who are immensely knowledgeable. And yet, as Maria von Ebner-Eschenbach tells us, “knowledge expands when it is shared.” But does knowledge that has been gathered in vast knowledge bases always remain free of errors? And how does one go about drawing accurate conclusions from collected knowledge? Patrick Rodler, Post Doc at the Department of Applied Informatics, is working on artificially intelligent error detection and error correction in knowledge bases.

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Mathematiker Benjamin Hackl im Gespräch über seine Studienzeit

Benjamin Hackl begann mit 15 Jahren zu studieren, mit 20 Jahren hat er sein Masterstudium der Mathematik abgeschlossen. Er ist damit der jüngste Absolvent eines Masterstudiums an der Alpen-Adria-Universität. Heute arbeitet er als Doktorand am Institut für Mathematik.
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