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UTSA brings 'father of fuzzy logic' to San Antonio for World Conference on Soft Computing

Lotfi Zadeh

Lotfi Zadeh

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(Dec. 9, 2013) -- The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA), the Republic of Azerbaijan's Ministry of Communication and Information Technology and the Azerbaijan Technical University are partnering to host the Third Annual World Conference on Soft Computing, Dec. 16-18 at the San Antonio Marriott Riverwalk.

The conference will draw participants from 18 nations to hear keynote presentations from eight scholars on soft computing and to honor Lotfi A. Zadeh, the "Father of Fuzzy Logic," and his wife, Fay Zadeh.

Mo Jamshidi, UTSA Lutcher Brown Endowed Distinguished Chair Professor in Electrical and Computer Engineering and primary organizer of the conference, has known Zadeh since 1968 and is his close friend and colleague.

"We are thrilled to welcome this soft-computing legend to the Alamo City," said Jamshidi. "Lotfi has led a fascinating life truly dedicated to advancing his theory of fuzzy sets, which is felt in the realm of every basic science."

Introduced by Zadeh in 1965, fuzzy set theory is used to make decisions when information is incomplete, vague or uncertain. More concretely, it is a way to program computers so they can mimic the imprecise way humans make decisions. This technology is now found in many real-life applications and commercial products including cars that virtually drive themselves, washing machines that automatically pick the right wash cycles and water temperature, and HVAC systems that adjust the temperature based on the number of people in a room.

Zadeh’s 1965 paper on fuzzy sets has received 48,600 citations as of December 4, 2013 and several thousand patents have been filed using his fuzzy set theory.

Lotfi A. Zadeh, age 92, is a mathematician, electrical engineer, computer scientist, artificial intelligence researcher and professor emeritus of computer science at the University of California, Berkeley.