Media Release: Two virtual conferences focus on technology

TWO conferences exploring the future use of web technology in generating new online businesses and next generation broadband access are taking place in Inverness this month, as well as being streamed free online.

Businesses and individuals across the Highlands and Islands are invited to participate in the conferences to share their views and gain new knowledge of the subjects.

Wendy Hall and Nigel Shadbolt, founding members of the Web Science Research Initiative (WSRI) are to run Highlands and Islands Enterprise’s (HIE) ninth Virtual Conference which will be hosted free on their Learningworks website,, on the morning of September 16.

The same afternoon sees the Next Generation Broadband Access conference, Learningworks’ tenth Virtual Conference. Both conferences are being held at the Drumossie Hotel, Inverness.

The Distributed Enterprise conference is to be held in conjunction with the WSRI and NESTA (National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts), with participants from the Third Sector, universities and development agencies.

Said a spokesperson: “The aim of the conference is to discuss advances in web technology, including the development of the Linked Data Web and how this relates to current and future business development.

“The WSRI brings together academics, scientists, sociologists, entrepreneurs and decision makers from around the world to examine the World Wide Web and offer the practical solutions needed to help guide its future use and design.

“It is a joint endeavour between the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) at MIT in Boston and the School of Electronics and Computer Science (ECS) at the University of Southampton.”

Wendy Hall, DBE, FREng is Professor of Computer Science at the University of Southampton. She was head of the School of Electronics and Computer Science (ECS) from 2002 to 2007.

One of the first computer scientists to undertake serious research in multimedia and hypermedia, she has been at its forefront ever since.

In July 2008, she was elected president of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), and is the first person from outside North America to hold this position.

Nigel Shadbolt, FREng is Professor of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Deputy Head (Research) of the School of Electronics and Computer Science at the University of Southampton. He has recently been given a special role by the Prime Minister to help transform public access to Government information.

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Contact: Theresa Swayne
Phone: 01463 244583