Hope you are fine at the time you’re reading this blog’s page.
Here I would like to share with you the wonderful 1-month experience in Germany.
We have been in Germany for one month (25 days precisely) from September 12th to October 6th.
This one month there in Germany was different from the other trip abroad. In fact, we were in Germany for 3 reasons:
- Attend the International Joint Conference on Pervasive and Ubiquitous Computing a.k.a Ubicomp (UBICOMP 2016)
- Two-weeks internship at DFKI (The German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence)
- Attend the International Conference on Mobile Computing and Ubiquitous Networking (ICMU 2016)
So this one month was about Conference – Internship – Conference, but as you might know, studies go with fun when it comes to me. We left Japan on September 12th and arrived at Frankfurt Airport. We then went to the city that held the first conference: Heidelberg !
We arrived at Heidelberg, checked in at the hotel and got ready for the next day conference. Indeed, our paper was accepted in Ubicomp 2016, for the Workshop was about Anticipatory Systems.
During this workshop, on September 13th, I gave an oral presentation about our work, entitled “Towards Proactive Food Diaries: A Participatory Design Study ”. In this work, we discussed users’ ideas on how to design better applications and system for tracking experiences, especially eating activities. According to the audience, the presentation was good, and I received many questions and feedback about how to improve the work.
My lab-mate Nakamura, also presented his work in another workshop and I think he did well. He got the Award of Best Demo in UBICOMP 2016.
My other lab-mate Maeda, also presented his research work, about Smart office (Smart desktop) to monitor the stress of office employees.
The conference lasted 4 days, (September 12th – 16th) and after presentations and demo sessions of the conference, we took the opportunity to visit the wonderful city of Heidelberg and enjoy the great foods and beer of this city. Heidelberg is a popular tourist destination due to its romantic and picturesque cityscape (according to Wikipedia), but for me, this town is a really nice place that combines the old style of town and the modern design of town. I really enjoyed the visit of the Heidelberg Castle. We visited this castle two times in the same day!
After UBICOMP ended, we went to Kaiserslautern for the next 2 weeks internship in DFKI. In Kaiserslautern, instead of staying in a hotel, we (3 students) decided to rent a flat (apartment) for the 2 weeks (AirBnb). Our flat was very well located, 2 mins walk to the center of the town where are all the best shops, restaurants, and mall of the city. Since we didn’t stay in a hotel, we needed to buy and cook our meals. Staying in the same flat, allowed us to know about each other “Kitchen skills and talents”. We had to cook, clean and study every day after the internship working hours. It was really a fun and interesting. For the story, the bathroom of the apartment had some evacuation problem for 1~2 days. After taking shower, the water couldn’t go and stagnate, so we need to fetch it and put in the toilet. Don’t worry, the apartment’s owner fixed the problem really quickly than expected.
In DFKI, we started our 2 weeks internship on Monday, 19th Sept. by an introduction meeting arranged by Prof. Dr. Andreas Dengel and his wonderful secretary Ms Brigitte Selzer.
Prof. Dr. Andreas Dengel is the Director of the Knowledge Management Reseach Department of DFKI. He is the one that allowed us to have this internship in DFKI, and I would like to express here, my gratitude to him.
Prof. Dr. Andreas Dengel and my Supervisor Professor Yutaka Arakawa have been working together, some years ago. Thanks to these two men, we also met wonderful researchers in DFKI, like Bo Zhou (Joey) and Ishimaru Shoya.
During my Master years, I read most of the paper written by Bo Zhou. So when I had the opportunity to go to DFKI, I was really interested in meeting the guy and work with him. His work on the “textile pressure sensing matrix” was my real interest.
After the introduction meeting, we were asked to join the group we want to work with. So I join, the Embedded Intelligence Research group, directed by Prof. Dr. Paul Lukowicz. In this research group, over the 2 weeks, I have been taught on the textile pressure sensing matrix, by Bo Zhou with his 2 Master students Ankur Mawandia and Heber Cruz. Together, we discussed some new uses of the pressure matrix, designed a new board and two new smart-objects for upcoming research.
Our 2 weeks internship in DFKI ended with a final presentation meeting in front of DFKI researchers, students and our supervisor professor. They were all happy with the results we got just after two weeks and gave us some encouragement words to continue working on what we started in DFKI.
The internship finished on Friday 30th, and the next day was October 1st.
Guess what we did, on Saturday 1st October in Germany!!!!
Easy, right? We went for Oktoberfest in Munich!!! We got the train on Saturday morning, full of Young German, especially well-dressed with the traditional german clothes (I really like this traditional cloth) and arrived in Munich around 2pm, and it was CROWDED.
People drinking, laughing, eating, playing, dancing,…… PEOPLE HAVING FUN.
The next day (Sunday), we went to watch the soccer game at the Kaiserslautern Stadium. The local team (KFC) was playing again the 15th club of the season (I can’t remember the name).
Monday 4th October started the second Conference: ICMU 2016, also held in Kaiserslautern.
I presented our work entitled “HappyInu: Exploring how to use games and extrinsic rewards for consistent food tracking behavior”. In this work, we describe our to use game and rewards to model and change people behavior.
Matsuda presented his work about the smart-belt uses to monitor eating activity and posture detection, while Nakamura introduced the Senstick sensors. Senstick is a sensor designed in our laboratory which is really useful to sense various things, from shoes to chopsticks.
During this conference, we had the opportunity to discuss with more researchers, especially those coming from Japan. In the last day of the conference, we had an excursion and a banquet in a winery, where we savored 6 different kinds of wine of the season.
After all these, we had to leave Germany on October 6th. So, after the wine degustation, we went back to the apartment, packed our stuff, and cleaned the apartment. We left Frankfurt Airport on Thursday 06th, at 7:20 pm.
This one month in Germany was for me about STUDY, LEARN and FUN.!!!! Really great country with really nice and warm people! Danke Schone !!! Hope to go back again there soon.