Mathematical models of real biological systems have predominantly been deterministic or stochastic continuous models. However, there are reasons to believe that at least some processes can be modeled in a "digital" way. Once we do that, we enter the domain of concurrent and reactive systems, where model checking has been an important tool. Perhaps techniques from the verification community could lead to insights about the systems principles that allow biological systems using very low energy (and high noise) components to function dynamic environments.
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About the speaker:
David L. Dill is a Professor of Computer Science and, by courtesy, Electrical Engineering at Stanford University. He has been on the faculty at Stanford since 1987. His primary research interest is computational biology, and, previously, formal verification.
He was named a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) in 2001 for his contributions to verification of circuits and systems, and a Fellow of the ACM in 2005 for contributions to system verification and for leadership in the development of verifiable voting systems. In 2008, he received the first "Computer-Aided Verification" award, with Rajeev Alur, for fundamental contributions to the theory of real-time systems verification.
Prof. Dill has also been very active on technology and policy issues related to voting. In 2004, he received the Electronic Frontier Foundation's "Pioneer Award" for "for spearheading and nurturing the popular movement for integrity and transparency in modern elections."
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