Creating the Future 2019
1,500 students and 400 alumni creating the future together
On April 11, 2019, we gathered together – students and alumni from all the Future Scientists Center programs and institutions across Israel – for an exciting, empowering day of inspiration and content, experience and learning. The congress included outstanding encounters with groundbreaking researchers and lecturers, entrepreneurs and makers, inventors from the fields of science and technology, music makers and designers.
To see images from the congress, click on the appropriate link:
Creating the Future at Binyanei Hauma
Future Scientists being Photographed
Future Scientists at Lectures
Young Scientists in Free Activity
Meeting Industry – Eco-System
Beat the Box
In the Virtual World
Technology at your Fingertips
Prof. Dan Ariely appears on the stage with an exciting, thought-provoking lecture, “It’s worth it! It’s all about motivation.”
It is commonly assumed that motivation is a rather simple matter: we want things or need them, and we work to obtain those things. Based on this assumption, we behave like mice in a maze, only instead of food, we receive money. Is it possible that the way in which we think motivation works is totally wrong?
Prof. Ariely explained about motivation and lack of awareness, and took us on a journey, one that bridges the gap between what we think and what takes place in reality. From the boardroom to the family dining table, Prof. Ariely examined and explained what motivation is, how it works, and how its understanding can improve our lives.
Prof. Dan Ariely is a world-renowned expert in behavioral economics, and one of the founders of the Israeli company, Kayma, which brings insights from the world of behavioral economics to the various government departments. Prof. Ariely is a serial entrepreneur, involved in numerous startups. His books have become bestsellers and have been translated into dozens of languages, and his TED lectures have garnered millions of views.
Ascola Alumni Lecture!
With more than a touch of emotion, in front of an enormous crowd and alongside experienced moderators and researchers, among the best in Israel – Asad, Salha, Ofir, Uri, Maxim, Yotam and Stav, members of the Future Scientists Center’s Ascola alumni network, opened all the congress’s sessions. Each of them lectured in the area that they had researched, presented inspirational content, and earned extensive praise. The lectures will appear on the Future Scientists website.
The Parasitic Idea: What do Donald Trump, Noa Kirel and PETA have in common? A look at ideas as evolutionary organisms.
Yoni is a graduate of the Odyssey program and a member of the Ascola network, who has completed a B.Sc. in Physics and is currently an entrepreneur in the field of FinTech and distributed technologies. He divides his free time between training in Thai boxing, obsessive reading of marginal topics, the study of languages, and computer games. To watch the lecture, click here.
The Silicon Giants: On the Progress of Chess Programs from Calculation to Thinking
Uri is a graduate of the Odyssey program and a member of the Ascola network, who is in his first year of an M.Sc. program in Physics at Tel Aviv University. In his free time he plays chess and watches YouTube. To watch the lecture, click here.
The Cube: The Secret Behind D&D
Maxim is a graduate of the Alpha program and a member of the Ascola network, who carried out research into the development of production methods for biofuels and is currently involved in managing and running roleplaying games. In his free time he paints, and is trying to set up a YouTube channel. To watch the lecture, click here.
It’s Not You, It’s Me: On Vision Neurons, their Role and How they Allow us to Understand the World.
Asad (18), from the village of Mashhad in the north of Israel, is a graduate of the Alpha program and a member of the Ascola network. In the past he was involved in research in the field of neuroscience and psychology, and he currently works at a study center for the psychometric examination. Asad is a fan of the history of science. To watch the lecture, click here.
From Here to There, and All over the World: The Story of the Shipping Container and its Influence on the World
Yotam (24) is a graduate of the Odyssey program and a member of the Ascola network. He serves as a sailor in the Israel Navy, enjoys travel, trains in the martial arts, and has just taken up kitesurfing. To watch the lecture, click here.
Parallel Universes in Quantum Theory
Salha (19), from Shafaram, is a graduate of the Alpha program and a member of the Ascola network. She is currently carrying out voluntary national service with an association working with the elderly; she has graduated a course in home-styling, and occasionally works in that field. To watch the lecture, click here.
One Second before Running from the “Sphere”
Stav is a graduate of the Alpha program and a member of the Ascola network. She is currently completing a year of service in Kibbutz Jezreel, under the auspices of the Kibbutz Movement. In her spare time she is involved in sport, cooking and learning new fields. To watch the lecture, click here.
Brain Power: Structure and Phenomena of the Human Brain
Ofir is a graduate of the Odyssey program and a member of the Ascola network. He is currently studying computer science and software engineering at the Technion, and has won the ORT Network CEO’s Prize, and the Technion President’s Award for Excellence. In his free time he takes an interest in neuroscience, the Middle East, and politics. To watch the lecture, click here.
Dr. Kira Radinsky
Her lecture: The Journey Toward Predicting the Future
The world in which we are living is facing challenges which are only becoming increasingly complex. The climate, for example, has gone out of balance, and we have not yet conquered all diseases. But one thing is clear: we need to fix the world, and this has to be within our own generation. In order to put together a working plan, we need to see the overall picture, and provide decision makers with tools to make the necessary changes.
Dr. Kira Radinsky holds a doctorate in data science, and is chief scientific officer for eBay Israel, which is involved in constructing the next generation of predictive data mining, deep learning and solutions for natural language processing, which will change the face of internet commerce. Dr. Radinsky was a partner in the establishment of Salespredict (purchased by eBay in 2016), which assists companies in predicting their internet sales.
Previously, as part of her work with Microsoft’s research department, Dr. Radinsky received international recognition for the development of predictive algorithms that identify the warning signs before critical world events, such as political riots and plagues. Dr. Radinsky is also a guest lecturer at the Technion, where she focuses on the application of predictive data mining to the field of medicine.
Prof. Karine Nahon, Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya
Her lecture: Social Networks and Challenges to Democracy
The internet and social networks are filled with power struggles that have been taking place with greater intensity over the past 20 years. The struggle over the control of the flow of information and over the structure of online space generally takes place far from the eyes of the public, but its aim is to change the behavior of users, to influence their preferences, and to set an agenda that is favorable to certain stakeholders.
In what way do these power struggles challenge democratic regimes? What is the role of the mediating platforms in the process, and how can the virality of information shuffle the deck and change these power dynamics?
Professor Karine Nahon is an information scientist, lecturer and social activist in the field of the politics of information. She investigates various questions related to the power struggles that take place on social networks and on their influence on politics.
She was chosen by The Marker as one of the 100 most influential people in Israel, and by Forbes as one of the 50 most influential women in Israel. Professor Nahon serves as president of the Israel Internet Association and as a staff member at the Schools of Government and Communications at the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya. Her book, Going Viral, which examined the influence of virality of information on society, won her the Best Information Science Book Award by the Association for Information Science and Technology, and the Outstanding Academic Title Award by the American Library Association.
Professor Yoav Shoham, Professor (Emeritus) of Computer Science, Stanford University
His lecture: Can a Computer Think? Feel? Express Free Will?
Much has been written on the subject of Artificial Intelligence (AI) today, and this is because this technology touches on all aspects of our lives, from assisting in early and more accurate detection of cancer, through to finding the most appropriate photograph for a bar-mitzvah album, out of tens of thousands of photographs, and more.
In his lecture, Professor Shoham surveyed the development of artificial intelligence from its earliest days to the present, touching also on predictions for the technology in the near future, but particularly for the distant future: can a computer – in principle, in another 200 years, or 2000 years – be creative? Can it feel? Can it have free will? The conclusion: no one knows for certain, but the questions are no less fascinating than the answers.
Professor Yoav Shoham is one of the world’s most experienced and respected researchers in the field of artificial intelligence. He was the founder of a number of AI companies, among them TradingDynamics (sold to Ariba), Timeful (sold to Google) and AI21 Labs. In addition, he is a joint founder of WeCode, a program for teaching programming to the disadvantaged, run at the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya. In 2016 Professor Shoham initiated the AI Index, which was launched at the end of 2017.
To watch the lecture, click here
Assaf Talmudi – Composer, Music Producer and Researcher
His Lecture: How do sounds stick to their opinions? Adventures in the technology of music
Music is a clearly human phenomenon. It doesn’t exist in nature, only in the desires and behaviors of people. In the 21st century there are robots and smart computers that can play chess and operate on people, solving real world problems and functioning, at times, like human beings. In the music industry, too, more and more tasks are being performed by computers. Researchers at universities and at commercial concerns, for example, are developing sophisticated algorithms that simulate musical intelligence. But can they replace human musicians? What would music created by machines sound like to people? The lecture gave the audience a look at the forefront of research into music in the age of learning machines.
Assaf Talmudi has produced albums for Shlomi Shaban, Shai Tzabari, Rona Keinan, Noam Rotem, Efrat Ben Zur, Ehud Banai, Barry Saharof, and Shuli Rand. He studied at the Thelma Yellin High School, served at Galei Zahal, and studied at the Royal Conservatory in The Hague and at Bar-Ilan University. Talmudi lectures at institutions such as Shenkar College, the University of Haifa, Musrara in Jerusalem, and Bezalel. Today Assaf Talmudi works for Imperson, which is developing artificial intelligence technology for the entertainment market.
Professor Yoram Yovell – Lecturer, Psychiatrist and Brain Scientist, Department of Clinical Neuroscience, Hadassah Medical Center, Ein Kerem
Lecture: The Wonders of Insight – What everyone needs to know about their brain!
The human brain is a wonder unparalleled in the universe. In recent years, there has been great progress in understanding the brain, with implications for the lives of all of us. How can we keep the brain young, even at an advanced age? What is intelligence, where do emotions sit in the brain, how does our parenting style influence the brains of our children, and how is all this related to the flexible brain?
Prof Yovell answered these questions from his unique point of view, which combines neuroscience and the humanities.
Professor Yoram Yovell is an associate in the Department of Clinical Neuroscience at Hadassah Hospital, Ein Kerem, and a lecturer in the Department of Psychology at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. His medical and scientific training, along with his ability to teach complex scientific topics in language understandable to all, have made Professor Yovell one of the most sought-after and popular lecturers in Israel.
Adi Ninio Greenberg – Space Researcher and Professional Counselor, Tel Aviv University
On the Way to Mars, you Stop at the Moon
America is going back to the moon, and has identified mankind’s next goal: to put a man on Mars. How have the past 50 years influenced the journey from Earth to Mars? Is mankind on the way to settling across the solar system? What are the challenges that stand in its way, and when will all this be possible? On mankind’s journey on the way to settlement throughout the solar system and on the challenges expected to be faced by the first men to set foot on the planet Mars.
Adi Ninio Greenberg is a space researcher in the Cometary Research Laboratory at Tel Aviv University. She holds the rank of Major (Res.), and was previously head of the Space and Satellite Technologies Section, and the Technological Innovation Section, in the Israel Air Force. She is the founder of Allspace IL for technological innovation in the space industry, and leads projects for excellence among students and adolescents, to encourage the choice of STEM subjects. She serves as a professional advisor to the Israel Space Agency, the Ramon Foundation, and other organizations.
Professor Hussam Haik – Chemical Engineering and Nanotechnology, Technion
His lecture: The Electronic Nose
Innovative technologies are being developed for non-invasive diagnosis of diseases, without the need for needles or the use of dangerous chemicals. In his lecture he presented the “electronic nose,” a system that simulates the principles of smelling among animals, which is used to diagnose illnesses via the patient’s breath. Clinical trials across the world have demonstrated that the system is capable of identifying more than 17 types of diseases, including various types of cancers, neurological diseases and infectious diseases.
Prof. Hussam Haik is a specialist in the field of nanotechnology and non-invasive diagnosis of illnesses, at the Faculty of Chemical Engineering and the Russell Berrie Nanotechnology Institute at the Technion. His innovative products, which are central to his work, focus on the rapid diagnosis of cancer and other diseases based on the subject’s breath, or on the basis of chemical indicators secreted from the skin.
Professor Hail holds over 36 patents for his inventions, and has published about 170 papers in international journals in the field of nanotechnology. Professor Haik devotes some of his time to appearing before students and to volunteer activity to promote higher education and technological education.
Doctor Tal Sines – Molecular Genetics, Graduate of the Weizmann Institute of Science
Lecturer in brain science, genetics and intellectual property (patents). Israeli patent attorney, founder and partner in DNAtix, supplier of blockchain-based genetic services directly to the consumer, and former director of intellectual property at Hadassah Hospital and at the Technion. Consultant to Moach Metzuyan (Excellent Brain), which makes available neurofeedback technologies for neurological training and improvement of concentration and attention. A volunteer with the Makshivim Mechadash initiative, a social initiative to deploy neurofeedback technologies for neurological training and improvement of concentration and attention in Israeli schools.
Genetics! Is everything preordained, or is there free will?
Is everything indeed predictable because of the genetic load with which we are born? And if that is indeed the case, do we have the ability to choose in our lives, and is there really free will?
From birth to death, our life’s plan is set out in our genome. To what extent does this plan dictate our health, our behaviors, and the level of happiness, sadness or anger in our lives? Are we on the way to the perfect baby? Is there such a thing as a “born murderer” and can genetic identification assist us in stopping them before that commit a crime or find them after they have slipped up?
To watch the lecture, click here
Doctor Hagar Landsman-Peles, Department of Particle Physics and Astrophysics, Weizmann Institute of Science
Her Lecture: The Search for the Unseen – The Riddle of Dark Matter
The problem of dark matter is one of the major open questions in physics. Countless calculations and measurements point to the fact that over 80 percent of the material in the universe is unknown. This missing matter is called, for the moment, “dark matter,” since it is invisible.
So what is dark matter? Why do we believe that such a large amount of matter is missing, and how do we search for something unseen? The lecture gave an overview of modern astronomy, and looked at a number of amazing telescopes from around the world, located on the tops of mountains, under gigantic icebergs in Antarctica, and even in isolated deserts.
Doctor Hagar Landsman-Peles is an experimental physicist in the field of astro-particles. She has had the opportunity to take part in a number of amazing scientific projects around the world, among them the CERN particle accelerator in Geneva, on which she worked as part of her doctoral program at the Technion; the construction of the giant IceCube telescope at the South Pole, in which she participated while conducting research at the University of Wisconsin; and the search for dark matter with the XENON detector, located beneath the Gran Sasso mountain in Italy, as a scientist with the Weizmann Institute of Science.
To watch the lecture, click here
This year, Future Scientists students and alumni were able to take part in an giant entrepreneurship space, where they were able to meet informally with entrepreneurs and directors of leading companies and startups around a single table. The discussions were in-depth and full of content and practices/ the participants learned about the entrepreneurs’ dilemmas, challenges and breakthroughs. Among the companies hosting the meetings: SparkBeyond, DreaMed Diabetes, SpacePharma, MOV.AI, and more
To view a short summary of the activity, click here.
Digital Technologies at Your Fingertips
In a Rube Goldberg workshop, the students built creations, using free technology. They built interactive models and a very long cause and effect machine. They used controllers, sensors, and engines, and whatever was available to solve the challenges of the hour. They found a joint language and connections – in summary, they enjoyed every minute.
Beat The Box
Thinking, creativity, cooperation and strategy are only some of the skills that helped Future Scientists students and alumni beat the box – a multiplayer thinking and creativity game that mesmerized the visitors to the congress. With a time limit of only 60 minutes, the members of each group had to decode hints and riddles, crack open various boxes and locate a code which, at the end, helped them beat the hacker who had taken control of the company’s computers.
The outcome that the participants achieved was so good, that they beat the achievements of Google, Facebook and many other groups who played the game in Israel and overseas! Incidentally, the world record, which stands at 48 minutes, was set by Future Scientists students at the national congress in 2017!
Want to see how it looked this year? To watch the video, click here.
The Infinte Loop
An enthralling act that combines riddles and assignments, whose purpose is to save a young man who is lost in the virtual world, and bring him back to the real world. How do you do it? For this, the members of the task force have to go into the virtual world, find clues and communicate the information with their colleagues in the real world. It is only through the right strategy and cooperation between the members of the group that it is possible to solve the riddles and complete the task
Cassette or tape?
What happens when you bring together gifted and talented students and the hits, technology and innovations of the 80s? How will these young scientists cope with the challenge? Watch the video, produced in cooperation with Keshet, and try to imagine: What else will the future bring that will make today’s technologies look outdated in 20 years’ time?
To watch the video, click here
The Israeli spaceship, Beresheet, actually reached the moon, but due to a fault in the engine, which caused too rapid a descent, it was not able to land in one piece, and it crashed on the moon’s surface. “We have reached the moon, but not in one piece. It’s a great disappointment alongside an amazing success,” they said at the control room in Yehud. Or Sagi is a graduate of the Odyssey program, and a member of the Ascola alumni network. Together with one of the project’s founders, Yonatan Weintraub, they tell of how it all began.