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ECURE 2005 February 28 - March 2 Speakers

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S. George Djorgovski
Professor of Astronomy
Director of Center for Advanced Computing Research, Caltech
Virtual Astronomy, Information Technology, and the New Scientific Methodology


S. George Djorgovski is a Professor of Astronomy at Caltech, where he has been on the faculty since 1987. He obtained his advanced degrees at UC Berkeley, and was a Harvard Junior Fellow 1985-1987. He has a broad range of scientific interests, and is an author or coauthor of several hundred publications, about 200 of which are in refereed journals. In the recent years, he has been developing a growing interest in the intersection of science and information technology. He is one of the founders of the Virtual Observatory concept, and is currently one of the Directors of the Center for Advanced Computing Research (CACR) at Caltech. More information can be obtained at his website, http://www.astro.caltech.edu/~george/.

Presentation Abstract

All sciences, including astronomy, are now entering the era of information abundance. The exponentially increasing volume and complexity of modern data sets promises to transform the scientific practice, but also poses a number of common technological challenges. The Virtual Observatory concept is the astronomical community's response to these challenges: it aims to harness the progress in information technology and applied computer science in the service of astronomy, and at the same time provides a valuable testbed for these fields. We see a new methodological foundation for science with massive and complex data sets in general, with a much broader impact on the modern society, commerce, information economy, security, etc. There is a powerful emerging synergy between the computationally enabled science and the science-driven computing, which will drive the progress in science, scholarship, and many other venues in the 21st century.