St Andrews Research Open-day in Computer Science

Event details

  • When: 26th October 2018 10:00 - 16:00
  • Where: School of Computer Science
  • Format: Conference, Symposium, Visiting Day

Register for St Andrews ROCS HERE for free.

St Andrews ROCS is an event for those of you who engage (or are planning to engage) with research in the School of Computer Science at the University of St Andrews.

The main audiences are prospective postgraduate students, prospective or current industrial collaborators, and colleagues from other disciplines or Schools in Scotland and beyond.

The event will take place Friday October 26th 2018, between 10:00 AM and 4 PM.

There will be talks from all research groups, posters, demonstrations, guided tours, and much more.

You can learn about how to become a St Andrews PhD student or an active industrial collaborator.

The event will take place in the JACK COLE BUILDING, NORTH HAUGH, UNIVERSITY OF ST ANDREWS, ST ANDREWS, KY16 9SX, SCOTLAND.

You can download the programme of activities.

If you have any questions, e-mail dopgr-cs@st-andrews.ac.uk.

Register for St Andrews ROCS HERE for free.

DLS: Scalable Intelligent Systems by 2025 (Carl Hewitt)

Event details

  • When: 13th November 2018 09:30 - 15:30
  • Series: Distinguished Lectures Series
  • Format: Distinguished lecture

Venue: The Old Course Hotel (Hall of Champions)

Timetable:

9:30 Lecture 1
10:30 Break with Coffee
11:15 Lecture 2
12:15 Break for Lunch (not provided)
14:15 Lecture 3
15:15 Discussion

Lecture 1: Introduction to Scalable Intelligent Systems

Lecture 2: Foundations for Scalable Intelligent Systems

Lecture 3: Implications of Scalable Intelligent Systems

Speaker Bio:

Professor Carl Hewitt is the creator (together with his students and other colleagues) of the Actor Model of computation, which influenced the development of the Scheme programming language and the π calculus, and inspired several other systems and programming languages. The Actor Model is in widespread industrial use including eBay, Microsoft, and Twitter. For his doctoral thesis, he designed Planner, the first programming language based on pattern-invoked procedural plans.

Professor Hewitt’s recent research centers on the area of Inconsistency Robustness, i.e., system performance in the face of continual, pervasive inconsistencies (a shift from the previously dominant paradigms of inconsistency denial and inconsistency elimination, i.e., to sweep inconsistencies under the rug). ActorScript and the Actor Model on which it is based can play an important role in the implementation of more inconsistency-robust information systems. Hewitt is an advocate in the emerging campaign against mandatory installation of backdoors in the Internet of Things.

Hewitt is Board Chair of iRobust™, an international scientific society for the promotion of the field of Inconsistency Robustness. He is also Board Chair of Standard IoT™, an international standards organization for the Internet of Things, which is using the Actor Model to unify and generalize emerging standards for IoT. He has been a Visiting Professor at Stanford University and Keio University and is Emeritus in the EECS department at MIT.

Abstract:

A project to build the technology stack outlined in these lectures can bring Scalable Intelligent Systems to fruition by 2025. Scalable Intelligent Systems have the following characteristics:

  • Interactively acquire information from video, Web pages, hologlasses, online data bases, sensors, articles, human speech and gestures, etc.
  • Real-time integration of massive pervasively inconsistent information
  • Scalability in all important dimensions meaning that there are no hard barriers to continual improvement in the above areas
  • Close human collaboration with hologlasses for secure mobile interaction. Computers alone cannot implement the above capabilities
  • No closed-form algorithmic solution is possible to implement the above capabilities

Technology stack for Scalable Intelligent Systems is outlined below:

  • Experiences Hologlasses: Collaboration, Gestures, Animations, Video
  • Matrix Discourse, Rhetoric, and Narration
  • Citadels No single point of failure
  • Massive Inconsistency Robust Ontology Propositions, Goals, Plans, Descriptions, Statistics, Narratives
  • Actor Services Hardware and Software
  • Actor Many Cores Non-sequential, Every-word-tagged, Faraday cage Crypto, Stacked Carbon Nanotube

For example, pain management could greatly benefit from Scalable Intelligent Systems. Complexities of dealing with pain have led to the current opioid crisis. According to Eric Rodgers, PhD., director of the VA’s Office of Evidence Based Practice:

“The use of opioids has changed tremendously since the 1990s, when we first started formulating a plan for guidelines. The concept then was that opioid therapy was an underused strategy for helping our patients and we were trying to get our providers to use this type of therapy more. But as time went on, we became more aware of the harms of opioid therapy and the development of pill mills. The problems got worse.

It’s now become routine for providers to check the state databases to see if there’s multi-sourcing — getting prescriptions from other providers. Providers are also now supposed to use urine drug screenings and, if there are unusual results, to do a confirmation. [For every death from an opioid overdose] there are 10 people who have a problem with opioid use disorder or addiction. And for every addicted person, we have another 10 who are misusing their medication.”

Pain management requires much more than just prescribing opioids, which are often critical for short-term and less often longer-term use. [Coker 2015; Friedberg 2012; Holt 2017; Marchant 2017; McKinney 2015; Spiegel 2018; Tedesco, et. al. 2017; White 2017] Organizational aspects play an important role in pain management. [Fagerhaugh and Strauss 1977]

Google@Computer Science 2018

The School hosted another successful Google event today. Students heard first hand from Exie Huntington University Programs Specialist, three of our talented alumni (James Smith, Peter Josling and Blair Fyffe) and had an opportunity to chat with current students (Silvia Nepšinská, Diyana Petrova, Daria Savanovich and Shyam Reyal) who have completed internships with Goggle. The well-received and very well attended session heard about their academic background, working at Google and technical roles. A technical interview workshop will take place later this evening.

DHSI Seminar – Wednesday 17th October

Event details

  • When: 17th October 2018 12:00 - 14:00
  • Where: Gateway Bldg
  • Format: Seminar

Digital Health Science Interschool Seminar Series
Opportunity for collaboration and networking

The next seminar in the DHSI series will be held in Seminar room 6, Gateway building, North Haugh on Wednesday 17th October at 12.00pm

The lead contact in Computer Science is Dr Tom Kelsey.

The core values of the seminar series is to allow a learning environment that cross cuts traditional academic “silo” thinking. Therefore this seminar series will focus on maximising the critical mass present in the participating seven schools who are currently contributing in the science of digital health.

In order to allow innovative thinking and collaborative practice the themes of every seminar will focus on one chronic and relapsing health related condition and/or a technological theme with all schools. Contributors to these seminars are encouraged to present any aspect of digital science. This year we also have NHS Fife participating into this.

See DHSI Flyer below for more information on themes and further seminar dates.


Bridging the Gap between Formal Argumentation and Actual Human Reasoning

Later this week Dr Alice Toniolo will be an invited speaker at “Bridging the Gap between Formal Argumentation and Actual Human Reasoning” taking place at the Institute for Philosophy II, Ruhr-Universität Bochum. Her talk will focus on argumentation-based support for human sensemaking of conflicting information. See abstract below for more information.

Abstract: Models of argumentation have increasingly been employed in human decision-making systems to facilitate good reasoning. Sensemaking of conflicting and incomplete information is one application where argumentation-based tools have the potential to help users reduce the cognitive load in identifying hypotheses about a situation. To improve the effectiveness of systems that employ computational models of argumentation, however, there is a real need to evaluate their use in human decision support. In this talk, we seek to better understand the link between human reasoning, argumentation schemes and preferred extensions in supporting sensemaking of conflicting information. An application will be presented in the context of intelligence analysis which employs argumentation schemes to construct hypotheses about the world and counteract cognitive biases. Preferred extensions are linked to different possible world explanations and help analysts reduce the cognitive effort in identifying what is coherent in a situation. However, using argumentation-based tools to support reasoning about the world opens questions on how people engage with and understand these approaches. A set of experiments with human participants is presented to investigate the use of argumentation schemes and preferred extensions in identifying plausible explanations. Initial results show that argumentation schemes are a reliable method to structure inferences and draw plausible conclusions from incomplete information with potential for supporting the identification of biases. On the other hand, preferred extensions can be seen as capturing different possible world explanations affecting the degree of believability of a conclusion. Results from the experiments show that the degree of believability of a conclusion may be associated with the number of preferred extensions in which the conclusion is credulously accepted with similar heuristics as those employed in understanding probabilities.

Young Software Engineer of the Year 2018 Awards

Congratulations to Keno Schwalb, a runner-up at last night’s Young Software Engineer of the Year Awards. His final year project IDS test comparison of intrusion detection systems using malware samples was shortlisted earlier in September.

The Young Software Engineer of the Year accolades are awarded to the best undergraduate software projects from students studying computer science and software engineering in Scotland.

The awards were announced at the closing event of ScotSoft, Scotland’s leading tech conference at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre.

Previous finalists and prize winners have included, Gala Malbasic, Simone Ivan Conte, Sam Elliott,Thomas Grimes, Alistair Scott, Craig Paul, Angus MacDonald, Ben Catherall, Graeme Bell and Ian Miguel. The number of finalists is further testament to the quality of talented students graduating from the School of Computer Science at St Andrews.

Dasip 2018 Keynote: Professor Simon Dobson

Head of School Simon Dobson will deliver a keynote at Dasip, the Conference on Design and Architectures for Signal and Image Processing in October in Porto. Dasip provides an international forum for innovation and developments in the field of embedded signal processing systems. Simon’s keynote will focus on making the transition from sensors to sensor systems software.

Abstract: Signal processing underpins everything we do with sensors. The physical limits of sensors, and the effects of their exposure to their environment, in turn constrain their accuracy, and therefore affect the trust we can place in sensor-driven systems. But this is a long pipeline, and it’s by no means clear how to trace from low-level errors and inaccuracies to their high-level consequences. In this talk I will try to tease-out some of the desiderata we might look for in such a pipeline, with a view to understanding how we can go about building sensor systems that deserve our trust.

MSc and Honours receptions 2018

After a busy week of orientation, advising and module talks, MSc and Honours students are pictured socialising during their welcome receptions on Tuesday and Thursday evening last week. The popular and lively events highlight the friendly student community within the School and provide a chance to chat to staff and students before a semester of hard work begins.

Images courtesy of Xu Zhu and Sylvia Laesecke

Computer Science orientation and welcome 2018

After advising and induction events, staff and students are pictured enjoying a welcome reception and orientation activities, coordinated by Alice Toniolo. The annual gaming session proved as popular as ever and offered retro classic digital games and traditional board games. The gaming session was closely followed by a well attended welcome reception for First Year students.

Images courtesy of Lisa Dow and Andrew Wong