ADA Center

Analytics, data and applications – Planned establishment of a unique research infrastructure to support businesses in Bavaria

Data is the new raw material in the digital world. The major challenge for businesses, now and in the future, is to remain competitive by exploiting this data using analysis and evaluation techniques.

This calls for the development of appropriate models and methods, and the training of future specialists to implement them – a task that requires close collaboration between science and industry. Fraunhofer IIS has recognized this need and aims to meet it by growing its expertise in the field of cognitive sensor systems.

To do so, Fraunhofer IIS has forged close contacts with the Friedrich-Alexander University of Erlangen-Nürnberg, especially with Prof. Dr. Alexander Martin (industrial mathematics), and with the Ludwig-Maximilian University of Munich (LMU), and other Bavarian universities.

Fraunhofer IIS’s network of industrial and research partners forms the ideal foundation for this project’s success. By concentrating expertise in the ADA Center, the institute will be able to offer companies sustainable solutions for improving their business processes. Advantages include shorter response times to changed process or customer requirements, higher-quality decision-making, the creation of new business fields and models for data-driven services, direct access to innovative product ideas, and the availability of skilled young experts.

The ADA Center is a novel initiative, unique of its kind in Germany, launched to create a new type of research infrastructure to support businesses in Bavaria, especially in the SME sector. What’s more, it offers great potential for augmenting Bavaria’s international visibility as beacon for research in this field.

Name inspired by Ada Lovelace

Ada Lovelace is acknowledged as the world’s first computer programmer, whose pioneering work in the 19th century sparked the idea of machines capable of independent learning, thus leading to the development of artificial intelligence.

© Photo Hulton Archive / Wikimedia Commons

Ada Lovelace is often referred to as the prophet of the computer age. In her notes on Charles Babbage’s paper describing his plans to build an Analytical Engine, she developed a set of instructions for calculating Bernoulli’s numbers, which is widely considered as the first example of formal programming. Moreover, she recognized the potential of Babbage’s engine to do more than simply carry out single arithmetical operations. In Note A she wrote:

“Again, it [the Analytical Engine] might act upon other things besides number, were objects found whose mutual fundamental relations could be expressed by those of the abstract science of operations, and which should be also susceptible of adaptations to the action of the operating notation and mechanism of the engine.”

Through thoughts such as these, she predicted the emergence of a systematic approach to information processing that laid the foundations for analytical science as we know it today. She even speculated whether the Analytical Engine might be able to compose entire works of music.

Ada Lovelace was born in London on December 10, 1815 under the name Augusta Ada Byron. She was the only child of Anne Isabella Noel-Byron (née Milbanke) and George Gordon Byron, the famous poet known as Lord Byron.

Lord Byron left his wife shortly after Ada’s birth. Her mother encouraged her schooling in science and mathematics. In her late teens, Ada met the mathematician Charles Babbage and became one of his closest collaborators. At the age of 19, Ada married William King, who became the first Earl of Lovelace in 1838 and was supportive of her scientific studies.