Computer Science News Archive

Robot avatar beaming put to the test

The BBC has been given an exclusive demonstration of how the technology of 'beaming' robot avatars works, allowing a kind of 'physical' interaction at a distance.

Mel Slater, Professor of Virtual Environments at UCL, demonstrated his pioneering technology to the BBC's Rory Cellan-Jones. He showed how he could "beam" his wife, Dr Mavi Sanchez-Vives who was in Barcelona, into his office in London, in the guise of a robot.

Mel Slater calls beaming augmented reality, rather than virtual reality. In beaming - unlike the virtual worlds of computer games and the Second Life website - the robot or a... [more]

Prof Mark Harman appears on BBC's Click

Prof Mark Harman, Head of Software Systems Engineering Group at UCL-CS, appeared in the May 5th and 6th 2012 edition of the BBC TV programme "Click", broadcast on the BBC News Channel. In the item, Mark describes the difficulty of software testing and the problem of deadlocks in concurrent systems. The feature was a piece by Lara Lewington on "why technology appears to fail without explanation".



Peter Kirstein joins Internet Hall of Fame

Photo of Peter Kirstein

At an event in Geneva last week the Internet Society launched its Internet Hall of Fame.

Amongst the 10 individuals honoured as the Pioneers of the Internet was UCL-CS Professor Peter Kirstein. Peter launched the first European ARPANET node with transatlantic IP connectivity. On July 25, 1973 this node passed its first data packets between London and the Information Sciences Institute in California, USA. This is believed to have been the first instance of an international, general purpose, heterogeneous computer network.

Peter has been involved ever since with European and transatlantic co... [more]

CS Research Student wins Google Scholarship

Photo of Larissa Dos Santos Romualdo

Larissa Dos Santos Romualdo, who is studying for a degree in the Computer Science Department, has been awarded a prestigious Google Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) Anita Borg Memorial Scholarship for 2012.

This scholarship was created by Google’s to mark the life and vision of Dr. Anita Borg (1949-2003):

"Dr. Anita Borg (1949-2003) devoted her adult life to revolutionizing the way we think about technology and dismantling barriers that keep women and minorities from entering computing and technology fields. Her combination of technical expertise and fearless vision continues to inspir... [more]

CS PhD social event: Bletchley Park day trip

Earlier this month 20 PhD students from various groups of Department of Computer Science enjoyed themselves from an interesting and meaningful day-out trip to the Bletchley park and the National Museum of Computing. After being welcomed by the staff of the park, they learned the history and importance of the park from a mini-lecture; then were showed around for the early development of code-breaking there, and principles of the famous Engima machine and the Bombe machine.

After relaxing and dining in the atmospheric Victorian Mansion, visitors broke into small groups to discover more in war-tim... [more]

UCL Academic Centre of Excellence in Cyber Security Research

UCL has been recognised by the EPSRC and the GCHQ as an Academic Centre of Excellence in Cyber Security Research.


The bid for the ACE-CSR included CS academics David Clark, Brian Collins, Nicolas Courtois, Peter Coveney, Yvo Desmedt, Jens Krinke, Jens Groth, Mark Handley, Kyle Jamieson, Brad Karp, Jens Krinke, Jamie MacIntosh, John Reid, Angela ... [more]

Secrets of App Store revealed by artificial life forms

Dr Soo Ling Lim (UCL Statistical Science) and Dr Peter Bentley (UCL Computer Science) have modelled Apple's App Store marketplace as an ecosystem, revealing what makes it thrive. 


Their work has been reported as this week's lead technology story in New Scientist:


Lim and Bentley will present their work at the GECCO conference in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in July 2012.

Best Paper Prize for CS Academic

Photo of Dr Jun Wang

Dr Jun Wang, together with colleagues from the University of Glasgow and Birkbeck College, has won the best paper prize at the European Conference on Information Retrieval (ECIR). ECIR is the main European forum for the presentation of new research results in the field of Information Retrieval.

The paper addresses the "top-k retrieval problem" in which the aim is to find the optimal set of k documents from a number of relevant documents given the user's query. The authors show that significant improvements can be made over the current state-of-the-art through an alternative treatment which e... [more]

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