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Journalist Prize for Informatics

2017 Prize Winners

State secretary Jürgen Lennartz, TV awardee Jan Tenhaven (TV network “arte”), radio awardee Alexandra Distler (Bavarian Broadcasting), magazine awardee Florian Güßgen (magazine “Stern”), Michael Backes, founding director of the CISPA Helmholtz Center i.G., and Manfred Schmitt, President of Saarland University. Credits: Oliver Dietze

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Florian Güßgen, Stern, “In the Fortress of the Cyberwarrior”

The jury’s statement:

“The author gives a thrilling description of how the large Israeli city of Beersheba has transformed into a cyber-capital of sorts, in which science, industry, and the military have become interwoven in a unique way. There are already 300 IT security start-ups in the desert city; the university is also growing steadily. The author enlightens the public about this previously obscure military-industrial complex for IT security. Although his article is light on technical details and current results of computer science research, it nonetheless reveals the comprehensive importance that IT security has for society. The article thus underscores not only the relevance of computer science specialists, but also their social responsibility.”

Radio

Alexandra Distler, Bayerischer Rundfunk / Bayern 2, “Ethics for Nerds – Why programming entails social responsibility”

The jury’s statement:

 “Cyberwars, social bots, hacks – Who is behind the technologies, programs, and algorithms that are influencing our lives for better and worse? How much power do computer scientists have over us? Are they aware of their responsibility? The author explores these questions in her 53-minute radio piece. The topic of the broadcast is itself original and stands out from the crowd. Although it is very abstract, the author manages to convey the theme in such a fascinating way that one listens intently for the entire duration of the broadcast. The guests have been very well selected. Overall, the piece is balanced and nuanced. It doesn’t push a particular opinion, but allows listeners to form their own. Thus, the contribution delivers food for thought, in order to question whether many technical systems and the start-ups behind them are violating rules of social and ethical behavior.”

Television

Jan Tenhaven, WDR/Arte, “The Silicon Valley Revolution – How a few freaks changed the world

The jury’s statement:

“The work addresses the beginnings of the PC era by portraying the people who contributed to it. In this way, the broadcast not only conjures emotions, but also uncovers political and societal cross-currents. Furthermore, it conveys the idealism that drove these people at the time. Regarding craftsmanship, the film convinces through consistent imagery, good selection of music and cinematically high-quality image composition. The imagery and music selection in particular make the work enjoyable. The film should therefore be kept and shown in museums, to document the values that formed the basis of digitization.”

2016 Prize Winners

On November 16, 2016, Saarland Minister-President Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer and Cornelia Quennet-Thielen, State Secretary at the Federal Ministry for Education and Research, awarded the Saarland State Chancellery’s Journalist Prize for Informatics. From left to right: Prof. Michael Backes; State Secretary Cornelia Quennet-Thielen; prize winners Axel Bach, Eva Wolfangel, Sophie Dezlhofer, Wolfgang Lemme, Frank Grotelüschen; Minister-President A. Kramp-Karrenbauer. Photo: Oliver Dietze

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Eva Wolfangel, Die Zeit, Die perfekte Erinnerung (The Perfect Memory)

The jury’s statement:

“The author reports on software systems that are meant to serve people in everyday life as an extension of their memory, their brain. The software is typically installed on a mobile mini-computer, which continously records each moment via microphone or camera. For her research, over the course of almost two years the author has visited scientists who are investigating such software systems and testing them on themselves. Her questions are always incisive and go far beyond the specialized scientific field. The scientists allow her to gain insights into her private life as well as into the loss of control over technology. As the author trenchantly describes the interview situation and deftly brings herself into the narrative with her own personal experiences, she succeeds in capturing a moment in which society’s values are threatening to change. In this way, she stimulates reflection and creates a space for discussion that is urgently needed.”

 

Radio

Frank Grotelüschen, Deutschlandfunk, Wissenschaft im Brennpunkt (Science in Focus)

The jury’s statement:

“Drawing on revelations from the beginning of 2014 that the US intelligence agency NSA is working on a novel type of computer, the author investigates the question of what effects such a quantum computer would have for people’s IT security in everyday life. To that end, he surveys many researchers at universities and Max Planck Institutes in Germany, and also consults scientists from Switzerland and England. Despite the abundance of material and the complexity of the quantum computer, the author presents the new technology in a relatively simple way. The jury expressly praises his courage to take on such a challenge. By describing not only the current advances in science, but also important past milestones in the art of encryption and decryption, the author draws a well-rounded overall picture that allows listeners to understand the acute threat.”

 

Television

Axel Bach, Ralph Caspers, Ulf Kneiding, Jakob Kneser, Peter Krachten, Wolfgang Lemme, Carsten Linder, Haluka Maier-Borst, Frank Nischk, Birgit Quastenberg, Jan Rähm und Jörg Schieb, Westdeutsche Rundfunk, Cyberwar – 7 Dinge, die Sie wissen sollten (Cyberwar: 7 Things You Should Know)

The jury’s statement:

“With vivid, very colorful imagery and a variety of different segments ranging from a simulated attack on a laboratory, to a fictional story about a senior and his granddaughter, through to investigative-style documentaries, the episode succeeds in not only raising awareness of IT security, but also explaining the methods behind it. With its the lively, carefully designed moderation, which links the individual segments, the show manages to speak to viewers of all ages. Even people who are well acquainted with the topic can learn something new.”

2015 Prize Winners

Volker Linneweber, President of Saarland University and Jürgen Lennartz, head of the State Chancellery, present the prize winners: Tina Kaiser and Benedikt Fuest of “Die Welt”, Jana Wuttke (Deutschlandradio), Dirk Arsendorpf of Südwestrundfunk and the TV Team of Bavarian Television Michael Bartlewski, Lisa Altmeier and Robert Stöger.

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Tina Kaiser, Thomas Jüngling, Benedikt Fuest and Thomas Heuzeroth,
Welt am Sonntag, „Die Menschenversteher“ (“The People Understanders”)

The jury’s statement:

“Through multiple examples, the authors show how scientists work to teach machines how to have feelings. The article reads like a journey through the research laboratories of the world. Multifaceted and vividly written, it shows what is already technically possible today – thus, no longer science fiction – and where the visions lead, invariably edging toward a nightmare scenario. The clear descriptions are not too insistent, but leave readers the freedom to decide for themselves what would be desirable or not. Although four authors worked on this text, there are no discontinuities to be found; rather, all the scenes and persons have been woven together quite artfully. At the end, the critical examination of what is technically possible, but perhaps not desired by society, is once again summarized very effectively with multiple examples.”

 

Radio

Dirk Asendorpf, Südwestrundfunk,  Roboterethik – Darf uns Technik beherrschen? (Robot Ethics: Can technology take over?)

The jury’s statement:

“Dirk Asendorpf critically confronts the question of how strongly robotics technology can intervene in our life. He shows where boundaries are crossed, because robots are controlling humans and not the other way around. The author warns us that many refuse to believe how quickly technological advances in robotics that have great benefits for civil society can also be turned to military uses. As well, Asendorpf shows how difficult it is to formulate ethical guidelines for robots, given for example cultural differences between Europe and East Asia. While in this country, robots as personal assistants are regarded skeptically, in Japan they are treated as human beings with their own emotions. In his multificated reporting, Dirk Asendorpf has critically elucidated the current research and uncovered many yet-unresolved ethical questions.”

 

Television

Michael Bartlewski, Lisa Altmeier and Robert Stöger, Bayerischen Fernsehen, Die Frage: Muss ich Angst vor Hackern haben? (The Question: Do I have to worry about hackers?)

The jury’s statement:

„”The television team around Michael Bartlewski raised everyday questions and addressed them in an extremely entertaining form for their young target audience. With a modern visual language and convincing moderation, the authors sharpened the audience’s awareness of the problem and showed even those without IT knowledge how easily achieved the goals of a hacking attack can be. Through the authentically staged attacks, the viewers could understand that it requires little criminal energy to intrude on people’s privacy. The relaxed, almost friendly way in which the experts were interviewed came across as so lifelike that viewers had the feeling of sitting right next to them and being personally affected.”

2014 Prize Winners

The winners of the 2014 Journalist Prize for Informatics were honored by Saarland Minister-President Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer in the Informatics Excellence Cluster at Saarland University (from left to right): Michael Stein (WDR5, Westdeutscher Rundfunk), Minister-President Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, Christian Schäfer (Süddeutsche Zeitung) and Ingo Knopf (“Quarks & Co.” series, WDR-Fernsehen). Photo: Manuela Meyer

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Christian Weber, 
Süddeutsche Zeitung, Liebe ist . . . wenn sie sich berechnen lässt (Love is… when it can be computed)

The jury’s statement:

“Through many examples, Christian Weber shows how computers are getting better and better at recognizing feelings and moods. They help call centers to filter angry clients, online dating services to find the love of one’s life and stockbrokers to predict a crashing share price. The article is impressive for its linguistic finesse, its particularly sophisticated structure and the understandable presentation of complex relationships. Sentences like ‘And the algorithms simply filter out the fluke’ or ‘Dull mathematics for the most beautiful of feelings. Isn’t all the magic being lost here?’ ensure reading pleasure throughout the entire newspaper page. Christian Weber succeeds in contrasting the rationality embodied by a computer against the hard-to-calculate emotionality of a human. He also critically considers the extent to which we can be assessed and manipulated by computers and their programs.”

 

Radio

Michael Stein, scientific series “Leonardo”, WDR5 Westdeutscher Rundfunk, E-Mail und die Detektive. Wie die Werbeindustrie uns im Netz verfolgt (E-mail and the Detectives: How the advertising industry follows us around the Net)

The jury’s statement:

“In an unconventional way, Michael Stein explains how the advertising industry collects personal data from internet users and creates profiles. As if by magic, individually tailored ads appear on the users’ screens. The author has created short radio tableaux that give listeners an idea how easily the databases can be filled as unaware internet users look for vacation destinations, scan through their emails or search for photos. Michael Stein blends the vividly narrated story framework with sidebars in which experts clarify the technical and legal aspects of the data collection mania and show what is currently being researched. The varied narrative style makes the episode entertaining, while at the same time a wide variety of information is presented in an enjoyable way that can be understood by a general audience. Michael Stein thereby subtly evokes a sense of unease in the omniscience of various online platforms. One positively hears the programs working.”

 

Television

Wolfgang Lemme and the team from Quarks & Co, WDR-Fernsehen, Die Macht der Daten (The Power of Data)

The jury’s statement:

“Together with the team of Quarks & Co, Wolfgang Lemme has released a broadcast on the dramatic consequences of all-encompassing digitalization. The show’s structure in itself is fascinating: the common thread is a dialogue in the studio, which immediately draws viewers under its spell and whose suspense and explosiveness then only continues to build. Moderator Ranga Yogeshwar and the (now decesased) Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung publisher Frank Schirrmacher analyze the theme as a congenial duo and consider controversial aspects of the digital world in a trenchant, clear way. Interspersed with their dialogues are short films that, through the stories they tell and because of their visual design, are also captivating. They deal with a stock market crash caused by computer programs, or questionable self-optimization by the aid of athletic apps. Over the course of the broadcast, the feeling of danger grows, as well as doubt over whether the comprehensive data analysis brings more practical benefits than sinister effects. Wolfgang Lemme and his team have succeeded in explaining even to inexperienced viewers how much power data collectors have over us today and what the consequences are, if one wants to avoid them. The episode, however, does not end with a disempowered society, but rather encourages the audience to act on political and social levels and give more transparency on collected data: through their provision to everyone.”

2013 Prize Winners

The winners of the Journalist Prize for Informatics who came to Saarbrücken for the award ceremony (from left to right): Frederik Obermaier and Bastian Brinkmann (Süddeutsche Zeitung), Minister-President Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, Uta Meyer (Xenius, arte) and Till Krause (Bayerischer Rundfunk). Photo: Iris Maurer

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Bastian Brinkmann, Jasmin Klofta and Frederik Obermaier, 
Süddeutsche Zeitung, Spam vom Staat (Spam from the State)

The jury’s statement:

“Four months before Edward Snowden started the ball rolling on the NSA affair, this team of authors published their piece on the German firm Gamma, which delivers espionage software to the whole world, including the police of oppressive states. The article reads like a crime novel; the reader is immediately drawn into the monstrous story. It relies on the contrast between the fact that the apparently naive company director Martin Münch never doubts the legality of his actions, while at the same time he unscrupulously delivers spying technology to any regime in the world. Traces of the software Finspy were found, for example, on computers in Bahrain. The authors, who are the first journalists to be able to access the Munich headquarters of Gamma, contrast the downplaying statements and promotional slogans of Director Münch effectively with the bitter realization that with freely purchaseable software from Germany, in other parts of the world, regime critics are anonymously spied out and then arrested. The jury honors the impressive research of the three authors with the main prize for print media. The piece has very critically confronted the dark side of information technology. The readers were shown the dimensions of the technological possibilities so clearly that at the end, surely many of them must have laid the newspaper down in shock.”

 

Radio

Till Krause, Bayerischer Rundfunk, Das Abhörgerät in der Hosentasche (The Listening Device in the Trouser Pocket)

The jury’s statement:

“Likewise before the NSA affair dominated media coverage, Till Krause considered the question of how every smartphone can become a gateway for spying – and how this possibility is already being used repeatedly: on the one hand by German companies that earn millions from spy software which they export to authoritarian states without compunction, and on the other by regimes like those in Bahrain, Egypt or Iran, who use it to monitor their critics and torment their victims. The radio author explains in detail the spy software technology, and consults with different experts on the trail of the globally active firm. The jury awards Till Krause the main prize for radio because he clearly shows how, in the secretive surveillance industry, moral and ethical questions simply go unasked. Despite the secrecy of the companies and German authorities, who are already clients, Krause brings together a wealth of information and shows with alarming clarity that much of what sounds like science fiction has long since become reality.”

 

Television

Uta Meyer and Jörg Giese, Xenius, Arte, Cybercrime, Darknet und Neues Internet (Darknet and New Internet)

The jury’s statement:

“In their individual coverage, the two authors show how attacks over the Internet have become an enormous problem – whether it is through countless online attacks by hackers, organized crime or state intelligence agencies. The audience learns how a hacker attack was able to paralyze the entire Internet connection of Estonia; what is hidden behind the Darknet, a dark underworld of the Internet; and how even the Federal Criminal Police Office uses spy software to detect crimes. The piece “Neues Internet” (New Internet) also provides an outlook on how the Internet would have to be fundamentally changed in its structure to become safer. The jury awards the show with the main prize for television because it shows Internet threats in a multifaceted, understandable way. The two authors succeeded in presenting the difficult, often abstract material in television imagery and finding experts who – clearly and with many examples – can uncover the drama of the real dangers for viewers. They have critically considered how the possibilities of the Internet, which initially should have served good ends, can be misused to threaten or harm every single user.”

2011 Prize Winners

Print

Frank Fleschner, Focus, Attacken gegen Spam Banden  (Attacks against Spam Gangs)

The jury’s statement:

“Frank Fleschner reports on the illegal business of mass emails and names criminal backers who still send – widely undisturbed – billions of messages through the Internet. He skillfully presents impressive figures as well as numerous quotations from experts in science and industry, and combines these with understandable explanations of the information technology being applied, in order to provide laypeople with insights into the threats of the World Wide Web. Fleschner successfully brings drama to the article by presenting computer scientists who are doing research in the area of IT security as heroes who are vastly outnumbered by hundreds of thousands of attackers, so that it reads in parts like a thriller.”

 

Radio

Matthias Leitner, Bayrischer Rundfunk (BR 2, Zündfunk), Spiel des Lebens – Wie Gamification die Welt verändert  (BR 2, Spark: Game of Life – How gamification changed the world)

The jury’s statement:

“In his radio episode, Matthias Leitner explains the still-young trend towards gamification, the application of game mechanisms to non-playful contexts, in order to better motivate people to participate. He illustrates what seems at first glance to be an academic theme with numerous applications and platforms from the real online world as well as examples from science fiction films. In an original way, he demonstrates how informatics permeates everyday life even with unusual applications, thereby opening up new possibilities for society and business. In addition, he artfully employs media-typical elements like music, narrators and background sounds, thereby creating a narrative style that is highly motivational and inspirational.”

 

Television

Antje Christ und Mike Kortsch, Xenius, ARTE, Robotik  (Robotics)

The jury’s statement:

“Antje Christ and Mike Kortsch succeed in presenting challenging research in the field of robotics and artificial intelligence clearly in their submitted program. Based on individual segments which are convincing in both their content and imagery, they provide a lively discussion of fundamental questions of the two research disciplines. The moderator duo completes the exciting presentation format. Sympathetic dialogue and unconventional yet absolutely critical questions enable a lively discourse, which helps provide even young people an entry point into the complex world of artificial intelligence and robots.”

 

Special Prize

Martin Schramm, Bayrischer Rundfunk (BR 2, Wissenschaft und Bildung), Der Kampf gegen die digitale Kluft – Wie das Handy Afrika erobert  (BR 2, Science and Education: The Fight Against the Digital Divide – How the cell phone is conquering Africa)

The jury’s statement:

“This radio coverage shows how, in some of the world’s poorest countries, the mobile phone is on the rise and is bringing people to the digital age in an unusual way. Martin Schramm explains in an entertaining and exciting way how automatic information processing – i.e., informatics – can be arranged when the usual IT infrastructure is not available. With a critical eye, he uncovers the digital divide and illuminates how mobile communications can contribute to building democratic structures and increasing educational opportunities in Africa.”

2010 Prize Winners

Print

Reto U. Schnerider, Neue Züricher Zeitung, NZZ Folio, Wünschelrute mit GPS (Divining Rod with GPS)

The jury’s statement:

“In a lively writing style, Reto U. Schneider presents different research projects from around the world that involve lay scientists (‘researching citizens’). Equipped with smartphones and GPS positioning, they gather data for environmental protection, such as about migrating birds and noise pollution, or they notify psychologists of their happy moments. Thereby Schneider not only shows the diverse possibilities of information technology, but also critically questions the extent to which the data collected in this way are of use for scientists. He analyzes the problems involved in such large floods of data, as well as the disadvantages of data transmitted by laypeople, which are often not systematically processed and thus can only be utilized with a few computing tricks. Schneider captivates his broad readership and reveals a whole new way of scientific communication, yet at the same time does not omit critical undertones.”

 

Radio

Gisela Krone, Südwestrundfunk (SWR 2, Wissen), Augmented Reality – Erweiterte Realität fürs Handy (SWR 2, Knowledge, Augmented Reality – Extended reality for the mobile phone)

The jury’s statement:

“In her half-hour radio broadcast, Gisela Krone describes how the mobile phone shapes and changes our everyday life, as a tourist guide, housing finder or mobile Twitter app. She takes the listener along in widely varied everyday situations and subtly describes the changes in our living environment that have resulted from the “extended reality”. Krone utilizes all the journalistic means of radio and brings substantial atmosphere into her program. Through lively images and background sounds, what is really more of a visual theme is made audible. The editor also conducted interviews with female scientists, thereby showing that computer science research is by no means a male domain.”

 

Television

Gabi Glasstetter and Uta Meyer (werwiewas-Medienproduktion), 3sat, neues Akte CCC – Der Chaos Computer Club (New File CCC – The Chaos Computer Club)

The jury’s statement:

“In their half-hour TV broadcast, Gabi Glasstetter and Uta Meyer portray the Chaos Computer Club. They go on an exciting search into its past and cleverly combine old archive recordings with current interviews of politicians, scientists, and the leading minds of the Chaos Computer Club. They give an impressive account of how the club is evolving into a group whose expertise is in demand by data protection authorities and the highest courts, that uncovers security gaps and data abuse, and that is often better informed than state-run institutions. Moreover, the episode recounts how the club is consulted by intelligence services and is thus gradually migrating between legality and illegality, into which individual members also fall. The program is thoroughly researched and illustrates how complex information technology has become and how difficult it is to master. With its effective camera settings, the film is also very visually appealing.”

 

Special Prize

Konrad Lischka, Spiegel Online, Hartz-IV-Computer – Ich schenk dir das Tor zur Welt (Hartz IV Computers – I bring you the gateway to the world)

The jury’s statement:

“Konrad Lischka receives a special prize because he has approached a theme of information technology in an unusual way. He describes a married couple who collect and rebuild old computers, in order to give them away to Hartz IV recipients for free. With this lively and beautifully written story, Lischka shows how even in Germany many parts of the population have no access to information technology. This concerns not only technical and financial hurdles, but also the ability to handle the knowledge and the diverse possibilities of the Internet. Thus, Lischka has fulfilled an important criterion of the Journalist Prize for Informatics, namely to provide social criticism regarding the opportunities and risks of information technology.”

2009 Prize Winners

Print

Steffan Heuer, Technology Review, Immer im Visier  (Always in the Sights)

The jury’s statement:

“Steffan Heuer has described, in the most exciting way, how today’s scientists help companies to capture and analyze the movement patterns of millions of people in real time. He provides a competent and detailed explanation of what this means for individual citizens, who have long been ‘in the sights’ of companies, surrendering personal data unbeknownst to them. With a critical eye, Heuer shows how computer scientists are also pushing against ethical boundaries through their gigantic data collection, since they can thereby neutralize privacy protections.”

 

Radio

Ralf Krauter, Deutschlandfunk, Rechnen mit Qubits – Die Computer der Zukunft nehmen Gestalt an (Computing with Qubits – The computers of the future take shape)

The jury’s statement:

“Ralf Krauter has very knowledgably and clearly explained how quantum computers work and what complex problems they might solve in the future. He makes clear how quantum physics would revolutionize computer science, if it could be used to enormously accelerate the computational power of computers. His reporting also shows how new insights are being gained at the interfaces between different research areas. Krauter has successfully translated the difficult, theoretical research area of quantum computers into radio-friendly form and conveyed the laboratory atmosphere in a very exciting way.”

 

Television

Yvonne Beckel and Jörn Simon, Children’s Channel KI.KA, Trickboxx, Computerspiele-Programmierung (Computer Game Programming)

The jury’s statement:

“Together with their team, Yvonne Beckel and Jörn Simon have succeeded in explaining to children how a computer game is programmed. In their program, they included the children themselves, and used their clever answers as explanations. In a playful and amusing way, the young spectators were taught how complicated it is for computer scientists to program a complex computer game. The children learned not only difficult specialized terms, but were able to watch the computer scientists at work. They also learned how much effort it takes to search for errors in computer programs. At the end, the children were once again consulted as experts in the testing of computer games – and taken seriously as judge-spectators.”

2008 Prize Winners

Print

Helmut Martin-Jung, Süddeutsche Zeitung, Es knirscht im Netz, Hack ins Herz, Hör zu, Computer  (The Net is Creaking; Hack into the Heart; Listen Up, Computer)

The jury’s statement:

“Helmut Martin-Jung understands how to make complicated computer science topics interesting for readers of a daily newspaper. Despite the necessary brevity of the articles, the main points were conveyed in a very clear, comprehensible manner. Using illustrative examples as an introduction, the curiosity of readers was immediately aroused. He has also succeeded in addressing readers who are generally not very interested in computer science.”

 

Radio

Wolfgang Schiller, Bayrische Rundfunk (BR 2, IQ – Wissenschaft und Forschung), Hinter der Großen Mauer – Internet in China zwischen Geldmaschine und Gedankenpolizei (BR 2, IQ – Science and Research, Behind the Great Wall – Internet in China between money machine and thought police)

The jury’s statement:

“Taking China as an example, Wolfgang Schiller conveys social criticism of the possibilities and limitations of computer science. He has managed to develop an exciting narrative arc and to use the possibilities of the radio medium in an artful way.”

 

Television

Valentina Hirsch, 3sat, new special, Games 2.0 – Der nächste Level  (Games 2.0 – The next level)

The jury’s statement:

“Valentina Hirsch critically and competently analyzes how computer games will blur the boundaries between the real and the virtual world in the future. In so doing she has shown very clearly that humans and machines will communicate in a great variety of ways, not only in games.”

 

Special Prize

Anne Klesse, Berliner Morgenpost, Die ganze Welt besteht aus Daten (The Whole World is Made of Data)

The jury’s statement:

“Anne Klesse has portrayed a female computer science lecturer and hacker in a very lively and sympathetic way. In doing so, she has unmasked common prejudices and conveyed a fascinating picture of her conversation partner’s social criticism around computer science. The article is well-suited to stimulate interest in computer science among young readers and those who are otherwise not familiar with the field.”

2007 Prize Winners

Print

Gordon Bolduan, Technology Review, Ende des Wohlwollens (The End of Goodwill)

The jury’s statement:

“This piece presents, in way that is understandable by a general audience, the possibilities and limitations of computer science, giving the reader food for thought. Its points are very well illuminated. It thus arouses the general public’s interest in topics of computer science and clearly conveys the research results.”

 

Radio

Thomas Reintjes, Deutschlandfunk, Sehen und Verstehen: Computer lernen den Umgang mit Bildern (Seeing and Understanding: Computers learn how to handle images)

The jury’s statement:

“The submission presents computer science research results and their applications in a way that is understandable for a general audience, and it provides the impetus for a socially critical discussion of the possibilities and limitations of computer science. Although the program does not utilize all of the capabilities of radio as a medium, the author nonetheless succeeds very well in communicating questions in the area of computer science as well as current research results to a broad public, in an interesting manner.”

 

Television

Friedemann Hottenbacher, 3sat, hitec, Simulierte Welten – Die Erfindungen der Wirklichkeit (Simulated Worlds – The inventions of reality)

The jury’s statement:

“The author has succeeded in presenting to television viewers, in an entertaining way, an abundance of current applications of computer simulations. With the help of the well-known virtual world Second Life, he vividly conveyed the meaning of simulations.” The article thus fulfills several requirements of the statutes of the Journalist Prize. It awakens the general public’s interest in computer science topics, communicates research results and their applications in a broadly understandable manner, and illustrates how computer science today supports and influences many areas of life.

 

Special Prize

Jörg Brunsmann, WDR 1 Live, 20 Jahre MP3 (20 Years of the MP3)

The jury’s statement:

“This turned out to be the only one of the contributions submitted that was in a casual narrative style directed toward young viewers. It explains to them how informatics today supports and influences many areas of life. Indirectly, it also introduces them to the field of study and training in computer science.”

2006 Prize Winners

Print

Thomas Kuhn, Wirtschaftswoche, Total vernetzt (Totally Networked)

The jury’s statement:

“In this contribution, a very current topic – the intelligent web (Semantic Web) – has been taken up in its complexity, and the author succeeded in making the role of computer science in all areas of life clear. Along with the current possibilities, prospects for the future were also shown.” The interview with internet inventor Sir Tim Berners-Lee was used by Thomas Kuhn as a stylistic tool to elaborate on the significance and the future of this research area, via the commentary of this world-renowned scientist. The text is also supplemented by an attractive pictorial and graphical representation.

 

Radio

Iska Schreglmann, Christina Teuthorn and Wolfgang Zehentmeier, Bayrischer Rundfunk (BR 2, Das Wissensmagazin am Freitag), Mensch und Maschine – Wer beherrscht wen? (BR2, The Knowledge Magazine on Friday, Human and Machine – Who controls whom?)

The jury’s statement:

“This submission succeeds in conveying to a broad public a topic of computer science in an interesting and compelling way, in particular through the use of different formats in one program. Along with the information itself, the listeners experience an intense sense of proximity through the selected sound effects.” The listeners are addressed as users of the informatics-based developments in a holistic way.

 

Television

Wolf Gebhardt, Deutsche Welle TV, Mozart-Code (Mozart Code)

The jury’s statement:

“The jury is uniformly of the opinion that it is a great challenge to present computer science pictorially. This is shown also by the low number of television submissions. The contribution of Wolf Gebhart surprises with his unusual approach to the topic.” Through the “literary” title and the introduction to the topic over a “cultural bridge” (Mozart’s music), he leads viewers into computer scientists’ ways of thinking and thereby takes them via this roundabout way past any fear of this still-new subject. The author has selected a topic whose proximity to informatics would not be suspected by laypeople, making a surprising connection.

 

Special Prize

Katja Nellissen, WDR 5 (Leonardo – Wissenschaft und mehr), Hau in die Tasten, Mädel! – Informatikstudium für Frauen (Leonardo – Science and More, Get to the Keys, Girl! Computer science studies for women)

The jury’s statement:

“This contribution was the only one submitted that addressed the lack of female students in computer science. Two study programs for female students are presented in an original way, and thus in particular female young people are introduced to the study and training subject of computer science. This provides food for thought for a societal criticism around the lack of women in computer science in Germany.”

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Das Projekt Tandem an der Universität des Saarlandes verfolgt das Ziel, die für eine wirtschaftliche oder industrielle Verwertung interessanten Forschungsergebnisse der saarländischen Informatik und der Max-Planck Institute durch einen Inkubationsprozess soweit weiterzuentwickeln, dass entweder Investoren die Produkte kaufen oder lizenzieren, oder neue Unternehmen im Saarland gegründet werden. Begleitende Aktivitäten im Projekt umfassen nationale und internationale Öffentlichkeitsarbeit, Maßnahmen zur Förderung des Technologietransfers im Allgemeinen sowie Formate zur Nachwuchsakquise im Bereich der Informatik. Das Projekt Tandem trägt dazu bei, die saarländische Informatik und den Wirtschaftsstandort Saarland zu stärken.