Brzozowski 80 - Waterloo, Ontario, Canada - June 24 2015

The Role of Theory in Computer Science

Janusz (John) Brzozowski

Janusz (John) Brzozowski has made fundamental contributions to many areas of theoretical computer science, including finite automata, regular expressions, semigroup theory, asychronous circuits and networks, verification, formal languages, and quotient complexity.

The School of Computer Science at the University of Waterloo is pleased to present a 1-day conference in honour of the 80th birthday of Professor Brzozowski, to be held June 24 2015. It will be followed by the related conference DCFS 2015 on June 25-27 2015.


The following people have agreed to speak.

Carl-Johan Seger (Intel)
Bruce Watson (Stellenbosch University)
Dilip Banerji (University of Guelph)
Zoltán Ésik (University of Szeged)
Galina Jirásková (Slovak Academy of Sciences)
Shanker Singh (IBM, Retired)
Ernst Leiss (University of Houston)
Jacques Sakarovitch (CNRS/Telecom ParisTech, France)
Hellis Tamm (Tallinn University of Technology)
Bruce Cockburn (University of Alberta)
Jo Ebergen (Oracle)
Andrew Szilard (Western University)
Helmut Jürgensen (Western University)
Jean-Éric Pin (University of Paris)
C.-J. (Richard) Shi (University of Washington)


See here.


8:00 - 8:45 AM:  Registration in fishbowl (DC 1301). Continental breakfast.

8:45 - 9:00 AM:  Welcome, logistics (DC 1302)

9:00 - 9:20 AM:  Seger, "Formal hardware verification: theory meets practice" (Talk itself was not given due to flight problems)
9:20 - 9:40 AM:  Cockburn, "Data structures and algorithms underlying genome reconstruction from short reads"     (video)
9:40 - 10:00 AM:  Ebergen, "The design of a fast, energy-efficient stack"     (video)

10:00 - 10:25 AM:  coffee break: pastries, coffee, tea.

10:25 - 10:45 AM:  Jürgensen, "The arduous task of modelling"     (video)
10:45 - 11:05 AM:  Shi, "Mixed-signal computing machine: abstraction and verification of your Blueberry/IPhone chip design inspired by Brzozowski's reasoning"
11:05 - 11:25 AM: Tamm, "Atoms of regular languages"     (video)
11:25 - 11:50 AM:  Ésik, "A fixed point theorem for non-monotonic functions"

11:50 AM - 1:40 PM:  Lunch on your own in University Plaza

1:40 - 2:20 PM:  Pin, "Open problems about regular languages, 35 years later"     (video)
2:20 - 2:40 PM:  Leiss, "Is complementation evil?"     (video)
2:40 - 3:00 PM:  Jirásková, "On the boundary of regular languages"     (video)

3:00 - 3:25 PM:  coffee break: fresh fruit, coffee, tea

3:25 - 3:45 PM:  Watson, "The coming decades of Brzozowski’s automata algorithms: incrementality and parallelism"     (video)
3:45 - 4:05 PM:  Sakarovitch, "The validity of weighted automata"     (video)
4:05 - 4:30 PM:  Reminiscences from Singh, Banerji     (video1, video2)
4:30 - 4:50 PM:  Szilard, "When Canadian theoretical computer science was born: a personal perspective"     (video)

4:50 - 5:00 PM: Wrapup and appreciation, photo


5:00 - 8:00 PM Dinner in Fishbowl, DC 1301, held simultaneously with DCFS registration.


To register, go here. Registration is free.


Please make your own housing arrangements. If you choose to stay on campus (which is the most inexpensive and convenient choice) you can register through the link above. Otherwise please visit here for other housing suggestions.

Getting Here

Waterloo, Ontario is served by air, rail, bus, and road. Be sure to tell the travel agent you are going to Waterloo, Ontario, Canada and not Waterloo, Iowa, USA!

Air: Region of Waterloo International Airport is a small airport with service from Chicago and Calgary, and is about 20 minutes from the University. Most travelers will fly instead to Pearson International Airport in Toronto.

Airport Transportation - Airways Transit

Airways Transit connects Toronto Pearson airport with the Waterloo area providing 24 hour door-to-door shared ride service. For Toronto Pearson airport transfers we have obtained a reduced conference fare of $79.00 per person, one way, tax included. To receive the reduced fare you must book in advance and your travel dates must correspond to the event dates.
Book online at:
Enter booking code: DCFS2015 (enter exactly as shown).
Or by phone 24 hrs: +1 (519) 886 2121 – Identify yourself as an DCFS delegate.

Other possibilities for air travel include John C. Munro International Airport in Hamilton, Ontario (about 1 hour from campus), with flights from Calgary, Orlando, and Miami; Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport in downtown Toronto, with flights from Newark, Chicago, Boston, Washington DC, and many Canadian cities; and Buffalo-Niagara International Airport in Buffalo, NY. If you choose the last option, remember that Canadian residents cannot rent a car in the US and drive into Canada with it!

Train: Both Go Transit and Via Rail offer infrequent service between Toronto and Kitchener. From the Kitchener train station one can take a taxi to the University or to local hotels.

Bus: Greyhound offers about 15 buses a day between Toronto and Kitchener-Waterloo.


If you are using a car to get to the conference, there is free parking in Lot "N". You will need to print out and display a parking permit on your dashboard, which you can download here. There are four files, one for each day.

A parking map shows you the location of Lot "N". Look for the green "N" on the map. The conference takes place in the Davis Centre, marked "DC" in red on the map. It is a short walk from the parking to the conference building.

Getting Around

While you are in the Kitchener-Waterloo area, you can take local buses (Grand River Transit) to get around. The "7" and "iExpress (200)" buses leave from directly in front of the Davis Centre and go to both downtown Waterloo and downtown Kitchener. Bus tickets can be purchased from the registration desk. At the desk, there are also some bus schedules and bus map you can consult.

Taxis are also another way to get around. Waterloo Taxi (519) 888-7777, United Taxi (519) 888-9999, and City Cabs (519) 747-7777, all serve the Kitchener-Waterloo area.

Financial Support


Financial support is being supplied by the Fields Institute and by the School of Computer Science, University of Waterloo.