The 17th Warwick Postgraduate Colloquium in Computer Science (WPCCS) was held on Monday 9 December, in the Mathematical Science Building for the first time. This year’s event saw 78 submissions from postgraduate research students in the Department. The submissions were split across six varied tracks, highlighting the breadth and depth of research currently being conducted by PhD students within the Department.
Student presentations were supplemented with two engaging guest talks from academics in the Department. Torsten Mütze captured everyone's attention with the mathematics behind origami, and Feng Hao enlightened the audience on the encryption challenges behind e-voting. The day concluded with a festive drinks reception, sponsored by the Department’s two Centres for Doctoral Training (CDTs), at which prizes were awarded to the best posters and presentations.
PhD student attendee Jonathan Davies said, “It was very rewarding for me to present at WPCCS this year. It gave me the opportunity to share my research with others and engage in stimulating conversation with my fellow postgraduate colleagues. The guest talks, in particular, were thought-provoking and engaging. I look forward to presenting at WPCCS in the future."
Hakan Ferhatosmanoglu, Director of Postgraduate Research and CS CDT, said, “It was a pleasure to attend WPCCS this year and to celebrate the excellent work that has been undertaken by our PhD students in the past year. It was great to see how everyone was having research discussions and exchanging ideas with each other.”
- Best Presentation - John Pocock
- Best Poster - Tom Wood
- Best in Computational Biology - John Pocock, Rawan Abulsayli and Hammam Alghamdi
- Best in Theory, Foundations, and Discrete Mathematics - Alex Dixon and Thesjaswini Raghavan
- Best in Computer Security and Networks - Jasmine Grosso and Shin Wan
- Best in Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence - Tom Wood, Abeer Almowallad, Gabriele Pergola, Haoyi Wang, Junyu Li and Helen McKay
- Best in High Performance Computing and Databases - Richard Kirk and Dean Chester
- Best in Urban Science - Jonathan Davies, Teddy Cunningham, Elisa Baioni, Ivana Tosheva and Shanaka Perera
On 15–17 November, we saw a number of Department of Computer Science students from across undergraduate and postgraduate communities represent Warwick at the Northwestern Europe Regional Contest (NWERC) held in Eindhoven, the Netherlands. Our 3 teams (led by Dr Dmitry Chistikov) finished in the middle of the 124-team scoreboard.
The NWERC is an annual contest in which teams from universities all over the Northwestern part of Europe are given a series of algorithmic problems.
The goal of each team is to solve as many problems as possible within the 5-hour time limit. Potential solutions are submitted and judged by an automated system. The top teams at the end of the contest qualify for the ICPC global World Finals.
We look forward to the next national round (UKIEPC) in autumn 2020 and to the future NWERC in Reykjavik, Iceland. Training sessions will resume in term 2, please do not hesitate to contact Dmitry (D.Chistikov@warwick.ac.uk) for further details if you’re interested in this.
We are please to report that Dr Maria Liakata has received a Turing Artificial Intelligence (AI) Fellowship.
The Fellowships from The Alan Turing Institute, the UK’s national institute for data science and AI, aim to attract and retain exceptional researchers in artificial intelligence. Covering a broad view of AI, including applications of foundational disciplines across mathematical sciences, statistical sciences, computational sciences and engineering, Fellows collaborate across disciplines and have the opportunity to collaborate with academia, industry, government and the third sector.
Dr Liakata’s Fellowship will focus on creating time sensitive sensors from language and heterogeneous user generated content. Commenting on the research she said:
“Wide spread use of digital technology has made it possible to obtain language data (e.g., social media, SMS) as well as heterogeneous data (e.g., mobile phone use, sensors) from users over time. Such data can provide useful behavioural cues both at the level of the individual and the wider population, enabling the creation of longitudinal digital phenotypes.
“Current methods in natural language processing (NLP) are not well suited to time sensitive, sparse and missing data, collected over time or personalised models of language use. The Turing AI fellowship will allow me to establish a new area in NLP on personalised longitudinal language processing.
“I plan to develop sensors for capturing digital biomarkers from language and heterogeneous user generated content to understand the evolution of an individual over time. I want to make a significant contribution to mental health by working with clinical experts to create new tools based on the sensors, making it possible to assess and measure conditions in between clinician appointments.”
To read more on this story, please click here.
Department hosts JP Morgan Technology Showcase, Bank of America Coursework Sponsorship and Citrix Security Workshop
The last week has seen a number of industrial engagements throughout the department.
On Tuesday, October 15th, Bank of America came in to announce their sponsorship of both CS118 Programming for Computer Scientists module and CS241 Operating Systems and Networks. Representatives from Bank of America were here all afternoon, including University of Warwick alumni, to tell our students what a career in finance technology is like, and how to shape their CVs for internships and graduate positions.
The day after, Citrix arrived to help some keen students develop a security based mindset. The students were split into groups of defenders and attackers, and had to out-think each other in order to either secure or steal valuable resources.
Then, on Friday, JP Morgan took over the atrium with their Technology Showcase. They spent the day demonstrating all the ways in which they use technology and even research new ideas, and not always in relation to finance. They also discussed with our students how their experiences and skills translate to a career in JP Morgan.
If you missed any of these events, there's still plenty of chances to get involved. We have a number of events coming up, so please keep an eye on the DCS calendar!
We are delighted to report that Dr Tom Gur has been awarded a Future Leaders Fellowship on Foundations of classical and quantum verifiable computing, funded by £892K from UK Research and Innovation. Professor Artur Czumaj, the head of the department's Theory and Foundations research theme, has commented:
We congratulate Tom and look forward to hosting this exciting project that he will lead. This prestigious award confirms the high international standing of research at Warwick in theoretical computer science and its rich interfaces with other fields.
Tom’s Future Leaders Fellowship is concerned with algorithms and cryptographic protocols, both in the classical and quantum settings, and their applications to blockchain technology and delegation of computation to the cloud. This research programme is inherently interdisciplinary, involving fundamental research at the intersection of computer science, pure mathematics, and quantum physics.
The vision that this project aims to achieve is to develop new and exciting mathematical tools and to capitalise on their power to the end of pushing the frontiers of verifiable computing; providing new methodologies for meeting the challenges imposed by big data and the societal need for decentralised systems.
Warwick and Alan Turing Institute partnership brings Data Science for Social Good Fellowship to the UK this summer
This year's Data Science for Social Good (DSSG) Fellowship programme is being held in the UK for the first time. The University of Warwick is hosting the Fellowships this summer in conjunction with the Alan Turing Institute. The 2019 programme is running from June 10 to August 28.
The Fellowship is a project-based training programme to supply data scientists with skills to create data-driven solutions to real-world problems. It trains aspiring data scientists to work on data mining, machine learning, big data and data science projects with social impact.
It was first pioneered by the University of Chicago, and since 2013 has seen more than 200 graduate and undergraduate students studying computer science, social sciences, statistics, public policy and other quantitative fields undertaking a DSSG Fellowship at the University of Chicago.
The Alan Turing Institute’s vision to advance research for public good and train the next generation of leaders is directly aligned with DSSG’s own goal to produce data scientists with strong skills in solving real-world problems.
Fellows work with non-profit and government partners around the world. To date, more than 60 projects have run, which have helped lots of organisations do more with their data, enhancing their services, interventions and outreach so that they can fulfil their mission of improving lives across the world.
Further details on the fellowship can be found here.
We are delighted to report that Dr Hongkai Wen has been promoted to Associate Professor, effective from 1 July 2019. Quoting from his recommendation,
Hongkai’s publication trajectory has been impressive in both quality and quantity. He consistently produces papers at leading international publication venues, at conferences as well as in journals. Remarkably, Hongkai has already forged strong collaborative links not only with a spectrum of colleagues in the department, but also across the Warwick campus, in particular with researchers in WMG. In the past academic year, Hongkai brought cutting-edge material into our popular 3rd-year module on robotics, which will benefit a number of forthcoming cohorts of students.
it remains to say many congratulations!