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Preface: AUTOMATA 2009
Pedro P.B. De Oliveira

AUTOMATA 2009 was the fifteenth workshop in a series of homonimous events associated with members of the Working Group 1.5 on Cellular Automata and Discrete Complex Systems, which is subordinated to the Technical Committee 1: Foundations of Computer Science, of the International Federation for Information Processing (IFIP).

AUTOMATA 2009 opened up to all fundamental aspects of cellular automata and discrete complex systems, including: dynamics; algebraic aspects; complexity issues; emergent properties; formal language processing; models of parallelism and distributed systems; phenomenological descriptions; scientific modeling; and practical applications. Further information about the event can be obtained in http://www.mackenzie.br/Automata2009.html.

The workshop had 38 submissions, from 17 countries, and 26 papers have been selected for presentation. Out of those, 6 gave rise to this special issue of the Journal of Cellular Automata, 4 of them from the short papers track and the 2 others originally presented as long papers. The difference between the paper categories was basically their maturity at the time of submission, as judged by the authors themselves and by the workshop Programme Committee, composed of 28 members (plus 11 additional referees), from 18 countries.

The papers appearing in this issue were invited according to suggestions collected at the time of the reviewing round of the workshop (when every submitted paper typically received 3 reviews), which included the appropriateness of the paper to the editorial policy of the periodical. The reviews were sent back to the authors, so that they could improve their submissions accordingly; after the workshop, the authors of the present issue had another opportunity to improve on the presented version, following the feedbacks received during the workshop as well as the self-evaluation of the paper by their authors, and had to write back to this guest editor, explaining the details of their improvements, according to the reviewers recommendations. In one of these cases, the paper had to enter a new reviewing stage, due to a significant revision the paper underwent.

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