Together with our client, the Web3 Foundation, we’ve published a blog about our trusted off-chain computing platform SubstraTEE which improves confidentiality, scalability and interoperability of blockchain solutions:

Have a TEE with Polkadot

More technical detail and a live demo with private token transactions is given in the recording of our recent meetup:

This project is open source and the code is available on GitHub

“I had an offer for my dream job at that time, but in the end I decided not to take the job,” said Dr. Béatrice Conde-Petit at the SCS “Women in Engineering” event on November 5, 2019. She then took the opportunity to set up a new laboratory at Buhler Group as a Food Science & Technology expert.

In her keynote speech, Béatrice Conde-Petit talked about molecular mechanisms of pizza dough, improving the shelf life of foods (e.g. bread), food safety (e.g. salmonella in spices), and future food production. While revealing episodes from her career Conde-Petit told us that she had been asked about her toolbox from a person outside her area. Since she didn’t have one, she developed her toolbox and used it in all projects, especially state diagrams. She also insisted at the ETH that she be allowed to analyse her research object “pizza dough” with other instruments. It is worth being persistent and linking methods from different areas.

The transition from academia and research to the private sector had been a happy coincidence for her. She had already been a consultant with the Buhler Group and, after not responding to the call to Vienna as a professor, was asked whether she would set up a new laboratory at Buhler Group. This career step was a new challenge, which she took up with respect but also joy.

The Buhler Group is a Swiss company founded in 1860 that is active worldwide in the sustainable food and feed industry, new technologies, and mobility. As Food Safety Officer, Conde-Petit was significantly in the driver seat to realize new innovations in food production. One example is a new technology for testing the quality of spices (e.g., salmonella). Today she is responsible for the “Future of Food Programs”. We currently consume 1.8 planets of resources worldwide. In the industrialized countries, the number is even higher. 1/3 of the energy consumed worldwide goes into food production and 70% of the water consumed comes from agriculture. In addition, 1/3 of the food produced goes to waste. This results in a food shortage on our planet in the medium term. We can counteract this by systematically changing the menu plan; for example with insects, algae, smaller amounts of animal protein and larger amounts of plants in our menu plan. In order to solve the food shortage and the food durability, the fermentation of food is also promising.

Béatrice Conde-Petit filled the SCS Aula with a lot of energy and inspired the participants with her experience and with the exciting topic “Innovation for the food production of the future” and at the same time gave a personal insight into her career. She is a woman of action and continuously promotes young talents in her industry.

She concluded her keynote by quoting Remo Largo: “The grass doesn’t grow faster when you pull it”. But we must be prepared to grab the ball when it is thrown at us, just as she accepted the position at Buhler Group.

After a lively round of discussions, we had further inspiring discussions at an aperitif.

We are all already looking forward to the next “SCS get together – Women in Engineering” event of SCS in spring 2020.

We are happy to invite you to our next networking event:
On November 5th we welcome Dr. Béatrice Conde-Petit as Keynote Speaker. She is a food engineer and works as a food technology expert for the Bühler Group. Prior to that, she worked for 20 years as a researcher, lecturer, and industry consultant at ETH Zurich. In her keynote speech “From becoming an engineer to inspiring engineers,” she will talk about her inspiring career and, of course, we would be delighted if there were many questions and a lively exchange.

Details can be found in the invitation (Einladung_Frauen im Engineering_From Becoming an Engineer). Please register by November 1st at the latest, so that we can organize enough snacks and drinks.

We are looking forward to seeing you!

Supercomputing Sisters
Claudia Lorenz, Sabine Proll, Jasmin Smula, Susanne Suter

Swiss Air-Ambluance Rega has introduced a complete new mission control system and thereby developed a new telecommunication infrastructure system with SCS AG as its partner. The system is Voice-over-IP (VoIP) based and features a custom-designed user frontend that perfectly fits the mission controller’s needs and includes two VoIP-telephones per workplace. The system also integrates communication through the Rega-proprietary Switzerland-wide radio system which was also developed mainly by Supercomputing Systems AG.

The communication system is seamlessly integrated to a mission control system delivered by Hexagon and ideally supports the operative processes of Rega mission controllers. In addition to the introduction of these new software solutions the entire mission control IT infrastructure of Rega has moved to external data centers. The telecommunication core systems run redundantly in two geographically separated locations. This ensures a high availability.

The development of the communication system including testing, deployment and go-live took SCS one year.

The Mico VoIP communication frontend for Rega mission controllers

Since 2012 it became apparent to public transport operators, that a concious decision is necessary between purchasing and installing a new generation of TVM (ticket vending machines) and retrofitting the current machines.  Every business case we prepared so far with a customer showed clearly: To keep the current machines, open the interfaces and source of the software (solving vendor-lock-in) with a retrofit is commercially and time wise always favorable.

With the successful conclusion of the first retrofit projects, from POS- (point of sale), passenger information-, to many other equipment it became apparent that the full potential of retrofit has by far not reached its limit.

In the meantime, many notable public transport operators have become customers of our retrofit solution, we are confident, that we can convince even more companies to go in this direction. For this, feasibility studies and solid cost estimation for hardware and integration into the customers systems are carried out. As soon as we are allowed to inform about the next concluded projects, we will do this here.

Some next projects are currently in preparation and in roll-out.

SCS has received a development grant from the web3 foundation in Zug for developing a privacy enhancement for blockchains that are based on  Parity Substrate, such as Polkadot and its parachains. SCS will leverage Trusted Execution Environments, namely Intel SGX, to enable use cases requiring enhanced confidentiality or integrity of decentralized computation.

This means that you will be able to transact cryptocurrency privately, that you will be able to swap cryptocurrency across different blockchains without a trusted intermediary or that you can vote privately and verifiably.

The project is open source from the start.

With Patrik Wernli, a very experienced project manager takes on the role of department head. From April 1st. Patrik takes over the department of Christian Bühlman who leaves SCS after 13 years. We wish Patrik a great start and thank Christian very much for the successful work over the years.

Prof. Jane Royston led us through various personal career situations and inflection points. She focused on how it is to work as a woman in a male-dominated field such as engineering or technology.

Despite the fact that women are slowly establishing themselves in engineering, there is still a large gap of potential. Especially when it comes to leadership responsibility. Jane motivated the 40 female participants to saying”yes” without hesitating when there is an attractive opportunity to take on more responsibility in their profession or in leadership roles. During her career, she repeatedly said “yes” to new challenges. In retrospect, Jane Royston herself was often surprised by her courage. She explained that women and men are different and that women have the responsibility to bring female associated traits to companies. Women, for example, are often the better listeners and bring sustainable values to companies. After a lively round of discussions, we had inspiring discussions over an aperitif.

We are all looking forward to the next “SCS get together – Women in Engineering” event at SCS in autumn 2019.

SCS Get Together Women in Engineering

Climate change and its impact will affect us all in the future. A few years’ ago, we organized Eco-lunches at our offices. During these lunches, we discussed the idea of combating climate change with an element from gamification.

This is why we are glad that this year, myblueplanet.ch launches the myblueplanet coach app that allows challenges against one self, with groups and regular customized feedback and tipps. At the moment, it is available as beta version. The launch event will be on Tuesday 5. March with Alex Stefes from the Club of Rome at ETH Zentrum.

https://www.nachhaltigkeitswoche.ch/programm/dienstag/myblueplanet- dein-coach-fur-ein-nachhaltiges-leben/

 

Last week, we proudly hosted the «Women in Digital Health» meetup. During this meetup, SCS project leader Dr. sc. Susanne Suter opened the discussion to using artificial intelligence for medical software applications. More specifically, she presented our findings on using artificial intelligence, in particular, machine learning and deep learning, in medical applications such as for intensive care, ophthalmology or fertility tracking. We had an inspiring evening with many enriching discussions among the participants.