27 September 2013 | 18:06

Celebrating the 110th anniversary of Dr. John V. Atanasoff’s birth on October 4th, 2013

On October 4th we mark the 110th anniversary of the birth of the famous Bulgarian-origin inventor Dr. John Vincent Atanasoff. On this occasion a number of events have been jointly organized by the Administration of the President of the Republic of Bulgaria, Sofia Tech Park, Technical University – Sofia, the John Atanasoff Society of Automatics and Informatics, BAIT, BASSCOM, ICT Cluster Bulgaria, the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, the IDG.BG technology website and Computerworld weekly.
On October 3rd the Technical University in Sofia and the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences’ Institute for Information and Communication Technologies will hold Open Days. From 10 am until 6 pm they will open their laboratories and research centers for all high school students wishing to explore them, the experiments and projects developed there, as well as the education and career opportunities which exist in the field of information and communication technologies.
On October 3rd also commences the International Conference Automatics and Informatics’ 13 John Atanasoff Celebration Days – 110th Anniversary. Its Dignitaries plenary session, which will take place on October 4th at 9:30am, will bring together for a round of academic lectures:
  • Prof. John Gustafson – project director for the reconstruction of the Atanasoff-Berry Computer
  • Prof. Carl Chang – chair of the Department of Computer Science at Iowa State University where John Atanasoff worked and created his ABC computer
  • Prof. Otto Spaniol – one of the leading scientists who played a key role in establishing the significance from a historical standpoint of the ABC 
On October 4th two events will be the highlight of this year’s celebration. Starting at 1:30 pm two awarding ceremonies will take place at the Coat of Arms Hall of the Administration of the President of the Republic of Bulgaria:
  • The decoration of the son and daughter of the noted Bulgarian-origin inventor Dr. John V. Atanasoff – Mr. John Atanasoff Jr. and Mrs. Joan Gathers – for their especially significant contribution to the strengthening and development of bilateral relations between the Republic of Bulgaria and the U.S.A. with The Order of the Madara Horseman Ist class, and
  • The awarding ceremony for the Laureates of the 2013 John Atanasoff Presidential Award and Prizes, whose names will be revealed at the ceremony
The Science, Innovation and Start-Ups 110 Years after the Birth of Dr. John V. Atanasoff conference, the key event which will mark the 110th anniversary of the birth of the Bulgarian-origin inventor Dr. John V. Atanasoff during 2013, will immediately follow at 4pm at Sheraton Sofia Hotel Balkan’s Serdika Hall. It will bring together renowned researchers and outstanding practitioners in the field of information and communication technologies, eminent ICT entrepreneurs, rising scientists and start-ups. 
The first part of the conference will highlight little known facts about John Atanasoff’s invention and its impact on the evolution of computer technologies. Personal memories about John Atanasoff and his connection with Bulgaria will be shared by his children, colleagues and friends.
In the break between the two conference segments some of Bulgaria’s most promising science-driven start-ups will present their products.
The second part of the conference will shine a light on the nexus between science, business R&D and start-ups. Some of Bulgaria’s most acclaimed ICT entrepreneurs, leading researchers and successful venture capitalists will discuss the current state of the local and global innovation and start-up ecosystems, and the next targets which should be prioritized.