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Department of
Computer Science
Tari Rorohiko

Computing and Mathematical Sciences

2009 Seminars

Events Index

An attempt to combine UML and formal methods to model airport security

Yves Ledru
Université Joseph Fourier, Grenoble, France
Tuesday, 24th November, 2009
This talk will discuss the EDEMOI project whose aim was to model airport security. The project started from the text of international regulations on airport security, and translated them into a set of UML class diagrams, which support the validation activity, and a formal model, for verification purposes. In order to make sure that what is validated is also what is verified, a strong link must exist between both models. RoZ offers a solution to this problem by translating annotated UML diagrams into Z specification. The Z specification can then be animated with tools like Jaza, developed by Mark Utting at the University of Waikato. This paper presents the application of the RoZ and jaza tools to one model of the EDEMOI project and lists the problems faced during this translation approach.


Using concurrent multipath transmission for transport virtualization: analyzing path selection

Kurt Tutschku
University of Vienna, Austria
Thursday, 12th November, 2009
The concept of Transport Virtualization (TV) enhances the capabilities of future networks. TV enables transport mechanisms with arbitrary resource usage indepentent of the underlying transport system. The simplest form of TV can be achieved by collecting multiple transport resources (even from different virtual networks or providers) and selecting the best resources for exclusive or concurrent use. However, the selection and application of concurrent paths is complex and its impact on the transmission is non-intuitive. Path length diversity of different concurrent paths inevitably introduces out-of- order packet delivery. We present and discuss a mathematical model for the analysis of the fundamental behavior and influence factors for packet re-ordering in concurrent multipath transmissions. Our model facilitates the understanding of path selection algorithms for multipath transport virtualization.


Making sense of (Bayesian) hierarchical clustering

Remco Bouckaert
Department of Computer Science, The University of Waikato, Hamilton, NZ
Wednesday, 7th October, 2009
Hierarchical clustering methods provide a powerful way of making sense of data with applications in such disparate fields as biology, linguistic research, marketing, political science, and anthropology. One of the benefits of the Bayesian approach over classical hierarchical clustering methods such as single-link, complete link and Ward clustering is that it provides insight in the distribution of possible hierarchies and hence the uncertainty of the clustering. However, the large sets of trees produced in Bayesian analysis make it difficult to grasp that uncertainty.

In this talk, the hierarchical clustering methods now in Weka will be introduced. Further, a new method of interpreting the large set of trees produced in Bayesian hierarchical clustering will be demonstrated. Examples involving gorillas, chimps, Maya civilization, New Zealand politicians and more will be used as illustration.


Learning to act in a complex world

Peter Andreae
School of Engineering and Computer Science, Victoria University, Wellington, NZ
Tuesday, 6th October, 2009
Humans learn to act in the world at many different levels, from low level learning to control their limbs (eg, walking, turning a beater, etc) through to high level learning to accomplish complex tasks (eg taking a cheque to the bank to deposit it, making a dinner with roast chicken, vegetables, parsley sauce, and a cake, etc). While there has been lots of very successful work on the lower level learning problems, there have been fewer results on learning the complex structured knowledge required for accomplishing high level tasks.

The talk will present an overview of three related projects to enable an autonomous agent to learn to act in a complex world containing many different interacting objects (such as the world of ordinary human activity). One project learns goal decomposition rules for a goal decomposition planner; a second project learns descriptions of how complex objects work and react to action; a third project uses these descriptions to construct contingent plans to achieve a goal.


Providing equal access to ICTs to remote rural communities: research outcomes and opportunities

Alvin Yeo
Faculty of Computer Science and Information Technology, Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (UNIMAS), Sarawak
Tuesday, 15th September, 2009
The provision of access of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) has the potential to promote economic and social development and improve the quality of life of people in rural and remote communities. One method of providing access is to build the necessary ICT infrastructure in the rural areas, including the establishment of ICT access points, or telecentres. Telecentres are community centres that provide public access to ICT in the form of telephones, computers and the Internet. The establishment of telecentres poses numerous challenges, particularly for those located in extremely remote areas that are inaccessible by roads and/or have no power supply.

The eBario pilot project has demonstrated a people-centred approach in providing ICTs to an isolated rural community in Bario, in East Malaysia (Borneo). By engaging the community prior, during, and after the deployment of ICTs, Bario now has access to telephones and the Internet, and are applying ICTs to enhance their livelihood. The project has been acknowledged at the local and international level as a successful bridging-the-digital-divide project. At present, the eBario project is being replicated at 4 other remote sites. In this presentation, I cover the project’s background, the approach employed, lessons learnt, and ICT research currently being carried out at these sites.

Time permitting, I will also briefly describe projects I am involved in, e.g. human computer interaction (eye-gaze drawing; multimodal integration), and ICTs for the preservation of indigenous languages.


GPS-Latin American

Diego Span
University of Morón, Argentina
Tuesday, 1st September 2009
A few years ago, Latinamerica has had the need to apply open technologies in order to give open access to information and preservation of its history. Greenstone can help them. This is why the Latinamerican network became a space for a growing community of users.


Computer Science at the University of Qatar and the National Priority Research Program (NPRP)

Mohammed Samaka
Computer Science Department, University of Qatar, Doha, Qatar
Tuesday, 25th August 2009
Dr Mohammed Samaka, Associate Professor in the Computer Science Department at the University of Qatar, is visiting the Department to explore opportunities for research collaboration. Recently the government of Qatar allocated 2.8% of the country’s income to engage in research in the areas of science, education, technology, health, and the environment. Two years ago, the government introduced a research plan called the National Priority Research Program (NPRP). The NPRP is the largest grant funding activity in the Middle East. It is a one-cycle per year grant application of funding, ranging from US$20K up to a maximum of US$350K per proposal, per year, for research project periods of one, two, or three years. At least 65% of the research funding must remain in Qatar.

For more information concerning the NPRP refer to the following site: http://www.qnrf.info/fund_program/nprp/index.php

Dr Samaka will give a brief presentation on the Computer Science Department at the University of Qatar, and on the NPRP programme.


Unplugged around the world and out of our world

Tim Bell
Department of Computer Science & Software Engineering, University of Canterbury, NZ
Tuesday, 21st July 2009
The Computer Science Unplugged project provides fun resources for school outreach. It is also useful for introducing kinesthetic activities to any classroom. This seminar will review the many developments with "Unplugged", including new applications, combining it with teaching programming in languages including Alice, Scratch and Java, and taking it into virtual worlds such as Second Life.


Working with designers

Rick Hargreaves
Wanganui School of Design, Wanganui
Wednesday, 3rd June 2009
Members of the public and the university are invited to attend a lecture on the subject of working with designers. The lecture will discuss issues such as the development of briefs, establishing and meeting expectations.

The lecture will be presented by Mr Rick Hargreaves, a senior lecturer at the Wanganui School of Design. Mr Hargreaves brings a wealth of teaching and practical experience, both from his involvement with the design school, and from his own successful design practice "Hargreaves Graphics" in Wellington.


Tuhoe Online - bringing broadband to the Tuhoe Rohe

Murray Pearson
Chief Technology Officer, Rural Link
Tuesday, 21st April 2009
During the last seven years the WAND group in the Department of Computer Science has been working on the CRCnet project looking at providing Broadband access to Rural and Remote communities using low cost wireless networks. To better understand the issues of deploying networks into these community and test the technologies developed, the WAND group was involved in the construction of a number of wireless networks. This talk will focus on the construction one of these networks in the Te Urewera national park area that connects four of the countries most remote schools It will also cover the subsequent partnerships that have formed between the Tuhoe Education Authority, the WAND group and later Tuhoe on Line and Rural Link that have lead to the construction of a network that covers the whole of the Tuhoe Rohe (Tribal Lands).


Treasure houses of the future

David Bainbridge
Department of Computer Science, The University of Waikato
Tuesday, 21st April 2009
The Niupepa Digital Library is the largest single on-line resource of the Maori language, and it was built right here at the University of Waikato with our open source digital library software, Greenstone. Down in Wellington the National Library uses it for their 1 million plus PapersPast newspaper website. Working with video content, the Hauraki Maori Trust is using exactly the same software organize, and present interviews with older members of their Iwi. The Greenstone software encapsulates over a decade of digital library research, and this talk focuses on how it is helping build the treasure houses of the future.


JStar: a declarative language for a parallel world

Mark Utting
Department of Computer Science, The University of Waikato
Tuesday, 31st March 2009
2005 marked the end of a era in computing. Computers are no longer getting faster but they continue to grow exponentially in the number of transistors. This poses a problem because it is now necessary to write programs that can do many things at the same time (that is, execute in a massively parallel fashion) in order to utilise these additional transistors. The widely-used programming languages of today were not designed for parallel computers, so parallel programming is currently difficult and costly. JStar is a new style of declarative parallel programming that aims to make it easy to write high-performance parallel programs that can be retargeted to a wide variety of computer architectures, including cluster computers, many-core CPUs, GPUs, and potentially even FPGAs. JStar separates the program logic from the parallelism details, avoids premature commitment to data structures, and allows the compiler to transform abstract programs into architecture-specific parallel programs. Our long-term goal is to change the way the world programs, by raising the abstraction level of parallel programs! Over the last 10 years, we have developed the semantics of this programming style, implemented several prototype languages, and demonstrated the automatic selection of efficient data structures with performance within a factor of two of hand-optimized programs in most cases. This talk will give an overview of the programming style and the underlying semantics, then focus on how the implicit parallelism in JStar programs can be transformed into explicit parallelism for various architectures.


Subjunctive interface support for exploring alternative scenarios

Aran Lunzer
Meme Media Laboratory, Hokkaido University, Japan
Tuesday, 24 February 2009
Users of computer applications often wish to experiment with alternative scenarios: specifying different inputs, obtaining the corresponding outcomes, and making comparisons between them. Despite this common need, today's application interfaces still typically support just a single scenario at a time, which makes experimentation and comparison hard work for the users. Subjunctive Interface techniques are intended to reduce the effort involved in such experimentation. An application with a subjunctive interface supports users in setting up alternative scenarios in parallel, seeing all their inputs and outcomes side by side, and manipulating them in concert. In this talk I shall introduce the RecipeSheet - a spreadsheet-inspired environment, whose subjunctive-interface features enable any calculation flow to support multiple scenarios - and demonstrate some applications that have been built with it.


Exerting human control over decentralized robot swarms

Mitchell A. Potter
US Naval Research Laboratory, Washington DC
Tuesday, 17th February 2009
Robot swarms are capable of performing tasks with robustness and flexibility using only local interactions between the agents. Such a system can lead to emergent behavior that is often desirable but difficult to manipulate post-design—making the real-time control of swarms by a human operator challenging. After introducing the principle of swarm intelligence, this talk will present preliminary work on two possible forms of real-time swarm control: top-down control of global swarm characteristics and bottom-up control by influencing a subset of the swarm members. Learning methods for each will be presented along with movies demonstrating their use.


More than a thousand words

Stefan Rueger
Knowledge Media Institute, The Open University, UK
Tuesday, 3rd February 2009
Web search engines have raised our expectation to be able to search for documents in large repositories with just about any query word. This lecture will examine the corresponding challenges and opportunities of Multimedia Search, ie., finding multimedia by fragments, examples and excerpts. Rather than asking for a music piece by artist and title, can we hum its tune to find it? Can doctors submit queries consisting of medical scans in order to identify medically similar images of diagnosed cases? Can your mobile phone take a picture of a statue and tell you about its artist and significance?


Events Index