School of Computer Science

Weekly Newsletter

22 September 2014


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News from Head of School

Watch SpiNNaker 105 being wired up

SpiNNaker 105 contains 103,680 mobile-phone grade (ARM) processor cores and a specialised high-speed network to simulate up to 100,000,000 neurons, or about one mouse worth.

Over the summer, Jonathan Heathcote, who graduated from the School in 2013 and is now a PhD student in the APT group, made a time-lapse video of himself wiring up the machine. Read more and see Jonathan in action.

The group is working on the design and construction of a machine that will be 10 times larger – a million cores simulating a billion neurones.

Dual honour for Prof Tsujii

Prof. Jun'ichi Tsujii, a visiting professor in NaCTeM has been awarded the FUNAI Achievement Award-Information Processing Society of Japan.

Last month Prof Tsujii was appointed as chairman of the International Committee of Computational Linguistics. ICCL organises the International Conference on Computational Linguistics (COLING).

EPSRC photo competition

EPSRC are looking for outstanding photographs of research:

You can see the 2013 winners here:


News and announcements

Survey of science and engineering research software

The EPS research software survey closes in two weeks on 30th September.


The EPS Applications Support Team is undertaking a survey of the science and engineering software used in research within EPS, to help plan future IT support for researchers. To take part in the survey please use the link and follow the instructions; it should take about 5 minutes to complete.


If you have questions about this please email

First International Workshop on FPGAs for Software Programmers (FSP)

Dirk Koch co-organised the First International Workshop on FPGAs for Software Programmers (FSP). The FSP workshop was held in conjunction with the FPL conference in Munich. The full-day workshop attracted 65 attendees from all continents and we already have several requests for organizing another issue next year. More details and the program can be found on the FSP website.

New library contact

Nick Campbell is taking over from Francoise Sullivan as Academic Engagement Librarian for the School of Computer Science.  His email address is



Improving everyday interactions with your phone                          24 Sep 14

14:00, Lecture theatre 1.4, Kilburn building.

Dr D. Brumby, Senior Lecturer at University College London, hosted by Caroline Jay.

Seminars website

RAEng Research Forum                                                                 26 Sep 14

10:00-17:00 26 September, RAEng, Prince Philip House, 3 Carlton House Terrace, London, SW1Y 5DG

Carole Goble is speaking at the annual Royal Academy of Engineering (RAEng) event, which explores the cutting-edge of world-class engineering research, funded by the RAEng. It provides an excellent opportunity for the worlds of research, industry, business and policy to meet and exchange views. Registration required.

Researchfish reporting taking over from ROS – workshops available          

                                                                                           Various in Oct 14

From September all 7 Research Councils will be using Researchfish for the collection of information on the outcomes of Research Council funded research. 

Previously researchers funded by AHRC, BBSRC, EPSRC, ESRC and NERC returned information via a system called ROS (Research Outcomes System) whilst Researchfish was used by researchers funded by STFC and MRC.

Free roadshows (afternoon and morning sessions) are open to all researchers:

·       Monday 6th October  - Hilton London Euston

·       Tuesday 7th October - Mercure Manchester Piccadilly Hotel

·       Wednesday 8th October - Novotel Edinburgh Centre

If you would like to attend one of these roadshows then please email  with the following information:
Your name and job title
Organisation name
Date you would like to attend.
Any dietary or mobility requirements. 

If you would like the day to cover the following topics:
- Why outcome data needs to be collected
- Examples of how outcome data has been used
- Researchfish demonstration
- What other organisations use Researchfish
- Future plans for outcomes collection
- Questions and answer session
- Whether there is anything else you would like RCUK to talk about.

Regular updates on the project webpage available through: and on twitter @RCUKRFP.

EPS Pensions Chat Room                                                        7 or 21 Oct 14

A chance to discuss pension matters face-to-face with a member of the Pensions Office on:


7 October (12 to 14:00) in D39 Sackville Street Building


21 October (12 to 14:00) in Niels Bohr Common Room, Schuster Building


Is there a question you have always to ask about your current or previous pension?


Whichever pension scheme you belong to (i.e. USS, UMSS, NHSPS or GMPF), you are invited to drop in at the EPS Pensions Chat Room on one of the above dates to talk to one of our pensions colleagues.


They can provide you with answers to all sorts of generic questions or tell you how to access information about our pension schemes, e.g.:


·       I’d like to save more toward my pension: how to do I go about it?

·       I’ve got a pension from another employer, what can I do with this?

·       What would my family receive if I died in service?

·       When can I retire?

·       How can I find out how much my pension is worth?

·       I don’t belong to a pension scheme: should I join one?


As well as having a chance to meet the Pensions team and put faces to names, you’ll be able to pick up a range of pensions scheme literature. No appointment is needed.


Please note that the team will not be able to offer more personal, detailed advice at these sessions; if this is what you need please make an appointment with the Pensions Office by emailing

Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions – Manchester event                     16 Oct 14

In its capacity as UK National Contact Point for the Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions, the UK Research Office is holding an information and proposal writing event for researchers which is hosted by University of Manchester on 16 October 2014.

This event could be quite helpful to anyone planning to participate in Marie Curie ITN application. This event is open to all UK researchers, so the places will be taken up quite quickly.  So, please register at the earliest by completing the online registration form available from the event website.


Funding Opportunities

Research Support Office

Please contact us through

There is information about support for grant writing, submission and successful examples at and through EPS. The EPS blog The Word contains features News, Events and comment relevant to Postgraduate Researchers, Research Staff and Supervisors or PIs.


Important: Changes in EU Funding Opportunities

More detailed information is available now that for Horizon2020 has started (the successor of FP7 EU programme). EU research funding is important for the School and it’s important to understand what’s available


EU funding-related documents are placed by the University's EU team at:
The easiest way to find these documents is to search using the keyword: 'Horizon 2020'

A great resource recommended by the ICT National Contact Point is, which also provides handy overview documents.

H2020 and High Performance Computing (HPC)

Want to know more about HPC opportunities in H2020? The e-infrastructure special interest group of the Knowledge Transfer Network has made some slides available.

Some upcoming calls include:

·       FET Proactive funding opportunities: Towards exascale high-performance computing deadline November 2014

REMINDER: British Council Research Links Travel Grant                  30 Sep 2014

Closing date: 30 September 2014

Travel grants are available under the Researcher Links initiative, as part of the Researcher Links - Newton Fund, and separately as Researcher Links. Researchers based in the UK and one of the partner countries may apply to spend up to 3 months in a research institution, either in the UK (if researcher is based in a partner country), or one of the partner countries (if researcher is based in the UK).  Research visits funded by successful travel grant applications must take place before 31 Mar 2016.

REMINDER: Joint EPSRC and POST postgraduate initiative 2015    3 Oct 2014

Closing date: 3 October 2014

For EPSRC-funded PhD students: looking to make your CV stand out?  A 3-month secondment opportunity to the Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology (POST) is open to EPSRC-funded PhD students.

EPSRC and Rail Safety call                                                           9 Oct 2014

Closing date: 16:00 9 October 2014

EPSRC and the Rail Safety and Standards Board (RSSB), supported by Department for Transport (DfT) invite research proposals working towards the joint research call on the impact of new materials on the whole-life cost of railway assets.

Further information

EPSRC IAA 7th call                                                                      15 Oct 2014

Closing date: noon 15 October 2014

EPSRC has awarded the University over £3.2M to deliver an Impact Acceleration Account (IAA) and extended the running date until 31st March 2017.


Funding is available for work based on EPSRC-funded research under the following mechanisms:

         Relationship Incubation     

         Concept & Feasibility Scheme

         Exploitation Secondment

         Academic Secondment


Sean Bechhofer, Simon Harper and Uli Sattler have all been previously successful with this scheme.

Further information (PDF)

RCUK- CONFAP (Brazil) Newton Call for projects                       17 Oct 2014

Closing date: 16:00 17 October 2014

RCUK and the Brazilian Council of State Funding Agencies are inviting applications for the Newton Fund RCUK-CONFAP Research Partnerships call. The aim of this call is to provide flexible short-term support for small-scale (up to 12 months; max £50k) research and networking activities, with the objective of establishing sustainable collaborations between UK and Brazilian researchers. Applications must specifically address poverty alleviation or development issues, particularly:

·       Health

·       Urban transformations

·       Food energy water environment nexus

·       Biodiversity ecosystems and resilience

·       Economic development and welfare reform


Applications across all research areas are also eligible, as long as they make a strong case for UK-Brazil collaboration and are ODA compliant. Successful grants will be announced in December 2014 with start dates as soon as possible after this announcement. A single, joint application should be developed by the Brazilian and UK applicants using the application form available to download from the call page.

Transforming approaches to improving hearing aid technology    27 Nov 14

Closing date: 27 October 2014 

This call encourages Engineering, Information and Communication Technologies, Physical and Mathematical Sciences researchers to develop disruptive technologies for use in hearing aid devices.

Further information


Featured Research Outcomes


Did you know…papers featured in the newsletter also go on display in the Kilburn Building (outside finance: 2.03)? Send your new publications to Robert Stevens so that more people get to know about your research.


Selected recent publications

·       Tim Clark, Paolo Ciccarese, Carole A. Goble: Micropublications: a semantic model for claims, evidence, arguments and annotations in biomedical communications. J. Biomedical Semantics 5: 28 (2014)


·       Carole A. Goble: Better Software, Better Research. IEEE Internet Computing 18(5): 4-8 (2014)


·       Andi Drebes, Karine Heydemann, Nathalie Drach, Antoniu Pop, and Albert Cohen. * 2014. Topology-Aware and Dependence-Aware Scheduling and Memory Allocation for Task-Parallel Languages. ACM Trans. Archit. Code Optim. 11, 3, Article 30 (August 2014), 25 pages. DOI=10.1145/2641764


Have we missed something? If you have some award news that you would like us to know about please contact Sarah Chatwin.