ICMCS 2018 in Morocco

By Miroslav Skoric - IEEE Austria Section

The 6th International Conference on Multimedia Computing and Systems (ICMCS’18) took place in Rabat, the capital of Morocco, on May 10-12, 2018. It was an IEEE technically co-sponsored conference, and was organized “with the objective to bring together researchers, developers, and practitioners from academia and industry sectors, working in all facets of multimedia, telecommunications, and computers.” The key role of ICMCS’18 was to create a program that achieves a balance between theory and practice, academia and industry, systems/ tools-oriented research and content creation. Keynote speakers included Joyati Debnath from Winona State University, USA; Eleni Karatza from Department of Informatics, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece; Radouane Mrabet from Mohammed V University of Rabat, Morocco; Rachid Benlamri from Lakehead University, Ontario, Canada; and Muhammad Younas from Oxford Brookes University, and others.

The conference was strategically placed within a bigger event, “Innovation Week” that was held on May 7-12, 2018, and also supported by the IEEE Morocco Section. Therefore, the conference started by introducing participants with other surrounding activities, and by giving awards to young people of Morocco who deserved recognition and were winners in various contests held during “Innovation Week.” Another good thing that ICMCS’18 organizers also made was a display and demo of various electronic instruments, such as amateur radio stations, antennas, drones, small robotic cars, etc. Conference participants showed significant interest in that display, which preceded the conference technical program, and it was obvious that the Moroccan hosts were experienced and skilled in that type of (unofficial) presentation, performed by practitioners, hobbyists and other technology enthusiasts.

ICMCS’18 also hosted tutorials. One of them was “Designing Amateur Radio Communication Networks at Home, School, and Work,” performed by Miroslav Skoric from the IEEE Austria Section. Local radio amateurs assisted by presenting their own activities in that field. Thankfully to understanding of the Moroccan telecommunications regulatory agency ANRT and Moroccan amateur radio union ARRAM, a temporary radio license was issued on time, which enabled the presenter to provide practical tests ‘in the field’. Larbi Ouiyzme, CN8FF, and Mohamed El Mghari, CN8DZ, were of great help with logistics.

The gala dinner was served in a traditional Moroccan restaurant where the pleasant evening included a famous tea-cup filling by local masters. The last conference day included a visit to main sightseeing venues in Rabat and its surrounding areas.