Earlier Highlights (18)
In May 2014, I visited Takashi Ikegami to participate in one of the group's meetings in his laboratory at the Komaba campus of the University of Tokyo. I very much enjoyed interacting with the students and postdocs in the lively international atmosphere in the Ikegami Lab.
In March 2014, I organized an 1-day informal workshop on "Modeling Origins of Life" (MOL for short) at my home base, IAS in Princeton, sponsored by my Program in Interdisciplinary Studies. This resulted in us setting up MOL github pages, including the start of a white paper.
<- Also in March, I participated in the second ELSI International Symposium, Origin and Evolution of the Earth-Life System, held at ELSI in Tokyo, Japan, for which I was a member of the Scientific Organizing Committee. It provided an interesting overview of early results of the first year of activities at ELSI.
In January 2014, I organized an 3-day informal workshop on "Why Life?" in Tokyo at ELSI, together with Jim Cleaves and Greg Fournier. The main theme was the question, what is it about matter that it can give rise to something as complex as life.
<- In November 2013, I gave an invited talk at the 6th Japan Astrobiology Network Workshop (JABN6) in Tokyo, Japan, in which I talked about the question whether the origin of life can be seen as a phase transition leading to complexity.
In September 2013, I attended the 12th European Conference on Artificial Life in Taormina, Italy. It was a great opportunity for me to get familiar with yet a whole other community of scholars, covering an area I was not very familiar with.
<- In August 2013, I organized a workshop on Large-Scale simulation of Formation and Evolution of Planetary Systems together with Jun Makino in Kobe, Japan, at the Center for Planetary Science, sponsored by the K Computer Center.
In July 2013, I started a blog to capture the life and discussions that take place at ELSI at Tokyo Tech, where I am one of the Principle Investigators. Entries appear a few times a week, written by me as well as by other ELSI members and visitors.
<- In May 2013, I visited the Beyond Center at the University of Arizona in Tempe, to participate in a very stimulating and informal workshop on Engines of Life: Thermodynamic Pathways to Metabolism, which was held in association with the NASA Astrobiology Institute Thermodynamics, Disequilibrium and Evolution Focus Group.
In April 2013, I visited the Complexity Science Center at UC Davis, the University of California at Davis, where I enjoyed some fascinating discussions about networks of networks, complex systems in general, and many other topics.