Thursday, May 7, 2015

A visit to Bletchley Park

During April 2015, during my latest visit to London, I spent one morning in Bletchley Park, "once Britain's Best Kept Secret" as they call it.  Bletchley is about 1 hour by train from London, on the north.  The place has become very popular after two events in 2014 (I do not really know if one influenced the other):

One of the more than 20 ENIGMA machines
- looking brand new
- The "Imitation Game" movie that went the most popular movie about the story of Alan Turing and the codebrakers of the second world war

- The complete restoration of the place, which opened for the public at the beginning of 2015 (Bletchley was there before, but without the restoration there was not much to see).

So, is it worth the visit ? (the entrance is around 15 GBP, the ticket might cost another 15 GBP and you will need 4-5 hours at least).  My answer is yes.  The visit will give you some unique insights in the ENIGMA machines, the code-braking techniques and of course the Bombe ! (this weird mechanical computer, that was used to find the positions of ENIGMA wheels based on intercepted messages).

Also, you will able to see not one, but actually two Bombes (Not originals - as all of them were destroyed right after the end of the war.  Or at least this is what the British Government said at the time).  One was made for the needs of the Imitation Game movie (it does not seem to work, but is a very well-made replica) and a full-functioning replica made by the Bletchley park and collaborators.

With the working replica of the Bombe 
Another nice opportunity for the visitor is to see all the restored offices and warehouses of the centre, as it was during the war.  You can also have a seat in Alan Turing's office !

Working at Alan Turing's office at Blechley Park

A nice add-on is the near-by National Museum of Computing, where at an extra cost yo can see the remake of the allegedly first-built electronic computer  / Colossus (built in 1943, before the ENIAC in US).

The Colossus

The MCIS 2015 Conference in Samos


The  9th Mediterranean Conference on Information Systems was held in Samos on 3-5 October 2015, organized by the Information Systems Laboratory (ISL) of the Department of Information and Communication Systems Engineering, of the University of the Aegean, under the auspices of Association of Information Systems (AIS).  The main theme of this year’s Conference is “Information Systems in a changing economy and society”, reflecting the critical role Information Systems play for enterprises and administrations, in their effort to accommodate radical economic and societal changes. MCIS 2015 solicits original contributions in the following non-exclusive tracks:

·       IS and Organizations
·       Smart cities
·       Big data, data protection and privacy in a global society
·       Electronic Government (GOV 2.0)
·       Persuasive Information Systems
·       Project Management and Beyond – accommodation of the critical role of information systems
·       Open Innovation & Knowledge Management
·       Security of Information and IS
·       Digital Entrepreneurship and the Future Enterprise

Paper Submission
We invite research papers that present original contributions to the theme of the conference or the themes of the special tracks in the form of:
·       Full research papers
·       Extended abstracts and short research-in-progress papers
·       Case studies (research and teaching)
·       Panel proposals

Submissions must be original and should not have been published previously.  Papers should be submitted in English, electronically as pdf files via EasyChair:

Authors should indicate, in the main text of the paper, the track for which they wish their paper to be considered. If no track is indicated the paper will be considered for the conference main track. Submissions will be subjected to peer review. Each accepted paper should be presented by one of the authors and accompanied by at least one full registration fee payment, to guarantee publication in the proceedings.  MCIS is a major international conference on Information Systems, endorsed by the American Information Society (AIS) and its proceedings are published in the AIS library and indexed in all major scientific indexes.

Keynote Address                                                                        
Christopher Tucci, Professor of Management of Technology, École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) “Information System and Business Model Challenges in The Era of Future Digital Enterprises‏”

Doctoral Consortium
Building upon the success of previous years, MCIS 2015 will include a Doctoral Consortium (DC) program. MCIS 2015 Doctoral Consortium aims to offer doctoral students the opportunity to interact and connect with first-class researchers working in IS fields in a relaxed yet stimulating setting. Ph.D. students currently working on their dissertations are eligible for nomination submission. Candidates should not have successfully defended their dissertation prior the Doctoral Consortium meeting that will be held on October 3rd, 2015, in Samos.  Submissions should be sent by email to‏ by midnight June 15, 2015, Greek time (GMT + 02:00), 2015. More information at
Programm Committee
M. Amami, RMC, Kingston, Ontario, Canada
S. Arvanitis, University of Zurich
H. A. Ismail, German University in Cairo
M. Kajtazi, Örebro University
E. Kolkowska, Örebro University
A. Kokkinaki, University of Nicosia
F. Lampathaki, National Technical University of Athens
G. Lekakos, Athens Univ. of Economics & Business
D. Lekas, Univ. of the Aegean
L. Mitrou, Univ. of the Aegean
A. Montalero, Politecnico di Torino
A. Polydoropoulou, Univ. of the Aegean
A. Pouloudi, Athens Univ. of Economics & Business
B. R. Schlichte, Aarhus University
P. Svejvig, Aarhus University
M. Themistocleous, University of Pireaus
C. L.  Tucci,  École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne

Conference Chairs
Dr. Euripidis Loukis, Associate Professor, University of Aegean,
Dr. Yannis Charalabidis, Assistant Professor, University of Aegean,

Program Chairs
Dr. Spyros Kokolakis, Assistant Professor, University of Aegean,
Dr. Maria Karyda, Assistant Professor, University of Aegean,

Doctoral Consortium Chair
Dr. Dimitrios Drosos, Lecturer, University of Aegean,

Conference Venue
The Conference took place in the Samaina Inn Hotel, at Karlovassi, Samos, which is just a stone’s throw away from the beach. The hotel has a 230-seat conference centre, air-conditioned and stylishly furnished rooms and offers a wide range of activities.