Josef Raviv Memorial Seminar - Took place at the Tel-Aviv Museum on October 29
IBM Haifa Labs News Center
A year has passed since the death of HRL and HDC founder Josef Raviv and his wife Joanna. To commemorate their memory, IBM Research and Development Laboratories in Israel held the first Josef Raviv Memorial Seminar on October 29 at the Tel Aviv Museum.
The theme of the seminar reflected Raviv's life work and vision: Technology and Business - Future Trends.
Esteemed guests included family, friends, HRL and HDC employees, members of ILA (Israeli Association for Information Processing), IBM customers and partners, and members of start-ups.
The seminar commenced with two piano pieces performed by IBM employee Ran Tzemach, who wished to commemorate his personal friendship with Raviv.
Alan G. Ganek, vice president of Technical Strategy and Worldwide Operations, IBM Research, was unable to attend due to the current political situation in the Middle East. Dr. Michael Rodeh, director of IBM Research and Development Laboratories in Israel, delivered Ganek's presentation on Themes for the Future in his absence. He spoke of the future in terms of the Connected Planet, Pervasive Computing, and the Digital Planet. Among the many changes that Ganek envisions include greater data traffic than voice traffic, higher demand for information appliances, wearable PCs and multimodal interaction.
Dr. Abraham Peled, CEO and president of NDS Group, spoke about The Broadband Future - Changing How We are Entertained and Informed. He addressed the digital television revolution and how it will affect our lives. Peled pointed out that more people watch TV than use toothbrushes. He said that digital TV will give viewers greater choice, convenience and control. Program storage in set top boxes (STB) will change our viewing habits to content-based, rather than time-slot based. XTV (extended television) will offer interactive content through meta data tagging. Popular services and information from the Internet will be adapted for mass market and delivered by digital TV as well.
After lunch, the Tnuatron dance ensemble performed a collection of pieces around the themes of man, nature, and technology.
IBM Israel County General Manager Meir Nissensohn spoke about The New Innovation Ecosystem. He said that despite all the talk about the new economy, the new world of innovation in business will not replace the old. They are dependent on each other for success. He discussed the incredible pace of change. Aspects of this include a dramatic increase in B2B electronic trade, dynamic pricing, the growing role of venture capital funds and high-risk investments, and the breakneck pace of new technology. To continue growth in the new economy, IBM must maintain its mature clients, enter exiting markets, and invest in a portfolio of experiments in areas such as life sciences, e-markets, intelligent infrastructure, and mobile e-business. Nissensohn concluded by saying that it is to the mutual benefit of both venture capital funds and established enterprises to work together.
Prof. Danny Dolev, head of the School of Engineering and Computer Science at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, spoke about Current Hi-tech Trends and their Effect on Research and Education. He described the impact of a world in which short-term gains and financial rewards overshadow research and scientific pursuits. This effects students, many of whom are more interested in high paying jobs than scientific knowledge and often leave before finishing their degrees. This effects universities by creating a dearth of research students, luring away professors and eroding funding. The challenge is in finding new ways to make computer science studies more appealing in the long-term for students and faculty, to enable them to pursue their ideas and studies simultaneously. Dolev encourages universities and industry to work together to find innovative solutions. In this way, we can continue Raviv's initiative.
The remainder of the seminar was devoted to the memory of Josef and Joanna Raviv. A video was screened - a moving tribute to Raviv, recalling his devotion to family, forward thinking and dedication to the people with whom we worked.
Nissensohn described Raviv as a forward thinker, pioneer, and leader. Dolev spoke of Raviv's vision, which set the direction for the School of Engineering and Computer Science. Rodeh recalled that in his eulogy at Raviv's funeral, he promised to continue on and succeed Joe at the IBM Labs and he feels that he has managed to do this.
Alon Raviv, Josef and Joanna's son, spoke on behalf of his family and thanked everyone involved in the seminar.