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home · events · colloquia · 2000-2001 · 

Colloquium - Gorlick

ECCR 265

Geek Chic and the Future of Space Systems
Michael Gorlick
The Aerospace Corporation

Pervasive computing embraces a vision of information that is situated, continuous, and registered. Situated information is appropriate to the current context and the state of the environment, continuous information is always available irrespective of location or circumstances, and registered information overlays the virtual atop the physical, allowing the virtual world to inform physical objects, events, and persons. Wearable computing is the intimate apparel of pervasive computing: body-worn sensors, devices, computing engines, and software that interlink personal and public space.

What does this have to do with space systems? The answer: everything. Hidden away in automobile air bags, Game Boys, and cell phones are the technologies that will revolutionize the design, construction, deployment, and management of space systems. By systematically exploiting three basic principles

  • replace physical structure with information
  • build small and think big
  • transport energy and information, not mass

we can create space systems of extraordinary grace, beauty, and utility that look, behave, and operate like nothing on earth. In this context I will offer selected grand challenge problems whose solutions will profoundly impact both earthbound and spaceborne systems.

Mr. Gorlick completed his graduate work at the University of British Columbia in 1978. Trained as an automata theorist (one of the most useless disciplines known to humankind) he found gainful employment working as a consultant for the British Columbia Telephone Company, helping them bring order into chaos. An intense desire for a decent suntan motivated him to move to southern California where he joined TRW Defense and Space Systems Group in 1979. He spent his first two years there conducting research in compiler testing and validation. In an extraordinary lapse of good judgement he became senior UNIX systems programmer for all of TRW DSSG and for three years he was responsible for providing UNIX timesharing services to a campus of 18,000 people. In 1984 he moved to the Computer Science Laboratory of The Aerospace Corporation and has been happily noodling away ever since on problems in logic programming, software testing, performance analysis, the software engineering of extremely large systems, networking, and software integration.

Mr. Gorlick presently divides his time between The Aerospace Corporation where he is a research scientist and Endeavors Technology, Inc. where he is senior software architect.

Hosted by Alexander Wolf.
Refreshments will be served immediately following the talk in ECOT 831.

The Department holds colloquia throughout the Fall and Spring semesters. These colloquia, open to the public, are typically held on Thursday afternoons, but sometimes occur at other times as well. If you would like to receive email notification of upcoming colloquia, subscribe to our Colloquia Mailing List. If you would like to schedule a colloquium, see Colloquium Scheduling.

Sign language interpreters are available upon request. Please contact Stephanie Morris at least five days prior to the colloquium.

See also:
Department of Computer Science
College of Engineering and Applied Science
University of Colorado Boulder
Boulder, CO 80309-0430 USA
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