Guest Speakers

Craig Nevill-Manning

Craig Nevill-Manning founded Google's first remote engineering center, located in midtown Manhattan, where he is an Engineering Director. He also invented Froogle, a product search engine. Prior to joining Google as a Senior Research Scientist, he was an assistant professor in the Computer Science Department at Rutgers University, and was a post-doctoral fellow in the Biochemistry department at Stanford University. His research interests center on using techniques from machine learning, data compression and computational biology to provide more structured search over information. Dr. Nevill-Manning received his PhD from the University of Waikato in New Zealand.

Why Academic Computer Science is not Merely Academic

In the public mind, computer science is often equated with information technology. To many, it's unclear where cutting-edge computer science research is applied in the real world, or where computer science postgraduate students can fully flex their mental muscles outside of academia. In fact, however, this knowledge and training is increasingly critical to computing as the pendulum swings back towards centralized processing -- this time in the form of large-scale distributed computing provided by companies such as Amazon, Netflix, Yahoo and Google. These companies are pushing the boundaries of distributed computing, networking, low-power processors, large-scale machine learning, and attention-efficient user interfaces. I'll discuss some of the problems at Google that require an engineering workforce where 40% have PhDs, and another 40% have Masters degrees, and attempt to lay out ways that academic computer science can maximize its impact on the services that hundreds of millions of people use every day.

Nigel Scott

Nigel Scott is a member of the triple Oscar winning sound editing team at Park Road Post. He and his team has been involved in high-profile movies such as King Kong and the Lord of the Rings trilogy.

Bigger, Louder, Longer - The Creation Of A Feature Film Soundtrack Using Todays Technology

The New Zealand film industry has undergone a recent and remarkable transformation. The success of Peter Jackson and other Kiwi film makers has highlighted to the world the skill and innovation that local companies have to offer. This is especially true for New Zealand's sound community, the people that create the aural experience that we absorb so easily at each outing.

The movie going public expect every new Blockbuster to be better than the last. Bigger, Louder, Longer (well maybe not longer). Creating new and and interesting sound requires dedication, innovation and creativity.

This talk will look at the people, process's and technology used in the world of the modern Feature Film Soundtrack. It is a world that is constantly undergoing technological change. Using a computer to process or playback audio has gone from an expensive maybe barely 20 years ago to complete acceptance in todays modern studios. Magnetic tape and 35mm film have been put aside and in its place every new digital innovation imaginable.

Tyrone McAuley

Tyrone McAuley is Co-founder/Co-Owner and Technical Director at Sidhe Interactive, New Zealand's most sucessful game development studio. Sidhe Interactive has built world class video games for the Playstation, Xbox and PC platforms over the last ten years. With over 60 talented creative and technical staff, it is not only New Zealand's largest video game developer but also one of the largest in Australasia.

Has New Zealand Got Game?

The videogame industry has grown and evolved immensely over the last decade. It is no longer a world of small developers building niche games played by geeks and nerds. It's a big, global business with an appeal firmly entrenched in pop culture. It is beginning to rival the film industry as an entertainment medium and it continues to grow and evolve at a cracking pace. So where does New Zealand fit into this behemoth? Share an intimate view of the New Zealand industry through the growth and development of Sidhe Interactive and the challenges it faces in the gaming world. Find out how to get into the industry, what it means and what it takes to be a good game developer.

Ian Foster

Ian Foster is Director of the Computation Institute at Argonne National Laboratory and the University of Chicago, where he is also the Arthur Holly Compton Distinguished Service Professor of Computer Science. His research deals with distributed, parallel, and data-intensive computing technologies; the applications of those technologies to scientific problems; and the mechanisms and policies needed to create and operate scalable scientific "cyberinfrastructures," or Grids as he likes to call them. Dr. Foster is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the British Computer Society. His awards include the British Computer Society's award for technical innovation, the Global Information Infrastructure (GII) Next Generation award, the British Computer Society's Lovelace Medal, R and D Magazine's Innovator of the Year, and DSc Honoris Causa from the University of Canterbury, New Zealand.

Why Computer Science is Fundamental to Everything

A growing fraction of human knowledge, in fields as diverse as climate and genomics, would not exist in its current form if it were not for computers. The reason is not simply the computer's power as a calculator: it is also because science is increasingly about information: its collection, organization and transformation. And if we view computer science as the systematic study of algorithmic processes that describe and transform information, then computing underpins knowledge in a fundamental way. One can argue, as has George Djorgovski, that "applied computer science is now playing the role that mathematics did from the seventeenth through the twentieth centuries: providing an orderly, formal framework and exploratory apparatus for other sciences." This expansive view of computer science is empowering for us computer scientists; it also poses hard questions about what problems we should work on, how we should engage with other disciplines, and the sociology of collaboration.

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