School of Computer Science

Weekly Newsletter

17 January 2011


News from HoS

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Prize & Award Opps

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School Strategy

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News from Head of School

President and Vice-Chancellor’s visit                                                        1 Feb 11

There will be an open staff meeting from 14:50 in Atlas 1 for the President and Vice-Chancellor’s visit.  This will include an opening address (c. 5 minutes) from the President which will then be opened up into a general question and answer session (c. 35 minutes).

Research Profiling Exercise (RPE)                                                                            

This is a reminder that the deadline for entry of RPE data is 12:00 noon on 31st January. The updating of e-Scholar entries on publications is particularly important, as this will be key in providing a profile for individuals, and thereby for the school.  The school profile will be important, in that the university is likely to use the RPE for informing investment decisions. Thus the stronger our profile, the easier it will be to make cases for investments in the school.


Full guidance on the 2010 exercise, including the criteria and working methods for each of the assessment panels, can be found at:


A set of FAQs is also available at:


School Plan 2011: Comments Invited                                                                       

The draft school plan for 2011 is now available for comment from:


Please feel encouraged to suggest additions, removals or changes, to the relevant Head of Function and/or to Norman, by the end of January.

Computer Architecture Lectureship                                                                          

Following on from the earlier consultation on academic appointments in the school, approval has been obtained for a new lectureship in Computer Architecture.  Further details will follow when the advert is released in the next few weeks; please start to consider if you know any promising candidates who might be encouraged to apply.



EPSRC: ICT Research – The Next Decade Strategy

As EPSRC seeks to achieve its strategic goals of Delivering Impact, Shaping Capability and Developing Leaders, the ICT Programme would like to engage with the research community on how we maximise our alignment with these objectives and implement our new Delivery Plan. Our aim is to involve the ICT community in the development of strategy for the ICT programme, in the context of our new Delivery Plan, and explore the direction and shape this should take.


This continuing engagement with the ICT community follows on from the recent successes of the ICT Theme Days and Photonic Systems Workshop where a number of common and specific issues were identified across the ICT portfolio. These resulted in a number of positive steps being taken by the ICT Programme and the ICT research community. Amongst these were, the ExICTe workshop which was held in February, the starting of an early career campaign and formation of an early career focus group, more engagement in the development of European funding opportunities, and the formation of networks between researchers.


We recently held a two day workshop where members of the community were asked the following questions:


What does the strategic plan mean for the ICT Programme?

What should the priorities be for ICT research going into the next decade?

How can ICT research contribute to future research challenges?


To build on the information gathered at the workshop and to engage as widely as possible with the whole ICT community, the ICT team has also published a survey based on the questions above. We would be grateful if you could forward this email to anyone you feel would be interested in responding. The survey can be found at and will be open from the 8th December 2010 to the 11th February 2011. Responses will be used to feed into discussion on future strategy for the ICT Programme.



UK ICT Pioneers

CLOSING DATE: 5pm Friday 14th January



For how to enter and information on the prizes go to:


This exciting competition is open to all 2nd and 3rd year UK post graduate research students in ICT related subjects who can demonstrate the exploitation potential of their research. Your PhD does not have to be funded by EPSRC to participate in this competition.


ICT related subjects include but are not restricted to Electronics, Communications, Computer Science and Human-Computer Interfaces and Photonics.


Shortlisted candidates and their supervisors will be invited to a VIP research exhibition and awards event in London on 23rd March 2011 attended by senior government and business representatives; providing a superb opportunity to get yourself noticed and make fantastic contacts in both the industrial and academic research communities.

Manchester Turing Lecture                                                                           8 Feb 11

An Evening with Donald Knuth - All Questions Answered


Established in 1999 in recognition of Turing's contribution to computing, the Turing Lecture series delivers innovative and engaging presentations from globally acknowledged experts.  We are delighted to announce this year's invited international speaker is Donald E. Knuth, Professor Emeritus of The Art of Computer Programming at Stanford University


Donald is one of the world’s leading computer scientists, author of the highly influential The Art of Computer Programming, a pioneer in computer typesetting and generally considered the father of the analysis of algorithms. 


Recognised for his unique humour as well as his intellectual brilliance, Donald brings a twist to the expected lecture format. Following a short introduction, he will be inviting questions from the audience on any subject. Time permitting, he will also reveal the significance of the number 85205232, which some speculate may turn out to be surreal.


This is a rare opportunity for you to meet one of computer science's true greats. A drinks reception will follow the lecture, at which Donald will be signing copies of his books and a range of his titles will be available to purchase at a discounted price.


The BCS/IET Turing Lecture is sponsored by IBM and is free to attend.

Further details (Please note the registration system is not compatible with Google Chrome).


Prize and Awards Opportunities

Outstanding Alumni Awards 2011                                                             28 Jan 11

Please forward nominations for Outstanding Alumni Awards 2011 – to be presented to members of the University’s alumni who have achieved distinction:

·        In their fields or professions, and/or

·        Through exemplary service to the University or the wider community, and/or

·        Through outstanding service of a personal or humanitarian nature locally, nationally or internationally

so as to enhance the University’s reputation for excellence.


Career achievement (as opposed to length of career) should be a key factor in the nominations.  Nominees should be former students and should meet at least one of the above criteria.


The Alumni Relations team will assist Faculties and Schools with suggested names from the central database and look forward to your nominations, which should be made in writing (preferably with supporting information, ie curriculum vitae, press cuttings, brief biographical notes) to the Division of Development and Alumni Relations, Room Gnd 7, Christie Building by 28 January 2011.


These awards are made to recognize the achievements of our alumni, to raise aspirations within our student community and to contribute to raising the University’s profile nationally and internationally.  Please contact Annette Babchuk for further details.


Prize and Awards Opportunities

Simulation of Nano Magnetic-Field Devices                                                            

Funding Body: Xyratex Technology Ltd
PI: Jim Miles
Award Amount: £55,262

Rotatable 2 Tesla Electromagnet                                                                                

Funding Body: EPS Strategic Fund
PI: Tom Thomson
Award Amount: £20,000

Virtual Environments for Treating Phantom Limb Pain

Funding Body: EPS Strategic Fund

PI: Steve Pettifer and Toby Howard

Award Amount: £10,000