Colloquium d'informatique de l'UPMC – Sorbonne Universités
Manuel Silva, University of Zaragoza

Tuesday 25 November 2014 at 18:00
Location: Amphithéâtre Astier, Esclangon Building, Université Pierre et Marie Curie (Jussieu Campus)


Manuel Silva received the Industrial–Chemical Engineering degree from the University of Sevilla (1974) and the Ph.D. degree from the INP de Grenoble (1978). From 1975 to 1978, he worked for the CNRS at the Laboratoire d’Automatique de Grenoble. In 1978 he started the group of Systems Engineering and Computer Science at the University of Zaragoza, where he has been dean of the School of Engineering (1986-1992).

At the intersection of Computer Science, Automatic Control and Operations Research, his main research interests did include modelling, validation, performance evaluation, and implementation of distributed Discrete Event Systems (DES) using Petri Nets. Last years he has been especially concerned with fluidization of DES. Moreover, interested in the History of Technology, he is the editor of Técnica e Ingeniería en España (in Spanish).

Prof. Silva has been distinguished with a medal from the city of Lille (France) and by the Association of Telecommunication Engineers of Aragón. He is Honoris Causa Doctorate by the University of Reims-Champagne-Ardennes, member of the Royal Academy of Engineering of Spain, and member of the Royal Academy of Sciences of Zaragoza.

Colloquium: Fluidization of discrete event models or a marriage between the discrete and the continuous

Formal discrete event, hybrid and continuous representations of systems provide “views” of their structure and behaviour in potentially many fields of application. In information technology (also in epidemiology, biochemistry, etc.), discrete event models are frequently “adequate” from a descriptive point of view (idea of faithfulness or accuracy), but the so called “state explosion problem” may eventually make their consideration not very practical.

Technically speaking, the fluidization of a discrete event model can be viewed as a (partial) relaxation of its state “from the integers into the reals”. From a more conceptual perspective, it can be viewed as a change of the point of view “from the individuals to populations” (i.e., single agents in a given internal state would not be distinguishable). The goal of such kind of relaxation or change of the point of view may be to reduce the computational complexity of the algorithms for certain analysis and synthesis problems, eventually to make decidable some properties. Of course, some price should be paid for that, and certain properties cannot be studied on the hybrid or continuous derived model, while for other properties only “approximate” answers can be obtained. As an important advantage, the more populated the system is, usually the more accurate are the answers obtained and the bigger are the computational savings obtained.

Taking Petri Nets as a well-known and expressive family of formalisms for discrete event “views”, the presentation will introduce the fluidization and focus on new analysis and synthesis possibilities, as much as on the price paid for that..

Other information

There will be a cocktail at 17:15, downstairs from Amphithéâtre Astier ("les Caves Esclangon").

Amphithéâtre Astier, Esclangon Building
Université Pierre et Marie Curie (Jussieu Campus)
4, place Jussieu
Paris Vème (métro Jussieu)

How to reach Université Pierre et Marie Curie (Jussieu campus)..

Electronic access:

Contact: Fabrice Kordon

Steering committee

Marcin Detyniecki
Jean-Charles Faugère
Bertrand Granado
Mathieu Jaume
Nicolas Maudet
Marc Shapiro
Fabien Tarissan
Gaël Thomas


All the offline videos

Year 2014 – 2015

Andy Tanenbaum, 28 October 2014
MINIX 3: A Reliable and Secure Operating System

Manuel Silva, 25 November 2014
Fluidization of discrete event models or a marriage between the discrete and the continuous

Serge Abiteboul, 24 February 2015
Title TBD

Alessandra Carbone, 14 April 2015
Title TBD

Year 2013 – 2014

Gilles Dowek, 22 October 2013
Are formal methods the future of air traffic control? (Is there an autopilot on board?)

Tony Hoare, 26 November 2013
Laws of concurrent system design

Vint Cerf, 4 March 2014
On the Preservation of Digital Information

Claude Berrou, 25 March 2014
L'information mentale

David Patterson, 6 May 2014
Myths about MOOCs and Software Engineering Education

Jeannette Wing, 20 May 2014
Toward a Theory of Trust in Networks of Humans and Computers

Donald Knuth, 17 June 2014
Computer Science: All Questions Answered

Year 2012 – 2013

Gérard Berry, 24 October 2012
Le temps et les événements en informatique

Georges Gonthier, 27 November 2012
Le génie mathématique, du théorème des quatre couleurs à la classification des groupes

Stuart Russell, 22 January 2013
Unifying logic and probability: A "New Dawn" for Artificial Intelligence?

Frans Kaashoek, 18 April 2013
The multicore evolution and operating systems

Robert Sedgewick, 23 May 2013
Taking Education Online: A Unique Opportunity for the New Millenium

Camille Couprie, Mathilde Noual and Mathieu Feuillet, 25 June 2013
Espoirs : Winners of the 2012 Gilles Kahn prize

Year 2011 – 2012

Leslie Lamport, 28 June 2012
What is computation?