School of CS newsletterPublished: Tuesday, 10 October 2017
Weekly newsletter for the School of CS
[ top ]News from Head of School
I am pleased to announce that the School of Computer Science has received a new Athena SWAN Bronze Award. The Athena SWAN Charter was established in 2005 to encourage and recognise commitment to advancing the careers of women in science, technology, engineering, maths and medicine (STEMM) employment in higher education and research. It was expanded in 2015 to include humanities subjects, PSS staff and support for gender equality more broadly.
The School was awarded its first Bronze Award in 2014, and has now its second (despite the 30% success rate for Bronze Awards!). The applications and attendant action plans have triggered various improvements regarding the way we monitor and run various processes around the school. For the next application, we will aim for a Silver Award - which has a wider scope and requires evidence of the impact of our action plan. I want to thank Liz Caine for leading the task of putting together our application to Athena SWAN, Nicolas Matentzoglu for data visualisation, Gill Lester and Cassie Barlow for their input the student sections and Sarah Chatwin for proof reading.
To coincide with Ada Lovelace Day (Tuesday 10 September) we are unveiling a portrait of Ada Lovelace. We have been given this portrait of her as a present - via Freda Chapman, Alison Ryan, and Carole Goble - from "Womens Electronic Village Hall”: this is a training centre that was originally on Rochdale Road and then moved to Thompson Street, into a building they called "Ada House" to honour Ada Lovelace. The print was bought from the Government Art collection, framed, and the original is at 10 Downing Street.
The portrait may be found to the left of the Desmond Henry artwork in the corridor opposite LT 1.3 and 1.4. the official unveiling will be 2 p.m. Tuesday 10 September; do come along for the unveiling.
Ada Lovelace has played an important role in Computer Science (collaborated with C Babbage on their Analytical Engine) and she was a great technical visionary for the field. We are officially unveiling this portrait to celebrate the day. In the near future, we will add an explanatory panel that explains both her links to Manchester as well as links to Sydney Padua and her graphic novel "The thrilling adventures of Lovelace and Babbage" (some may remember an exellent seminar by Sydney around her work animating the analytical engine http://events.manchester.ac.uk/event/event:c1im-ilv06j28-c5n9pu/the-thrilling-adventures-of-lovelace-and-babbage).
I welcome Andre Freitas to the School. Andre has joined us as the “data” part of the People to Data to Chips theme. Sarah Clinch is the People part and Christos Kotselidis is the Chips parts of this theme.
I’d also like to welcome back Ruqaiyah Pandor to ACSO. She has recently moved from the Finance office to ACSO.
I’m sure you’ll join me in welcoming both of them to the School.
[ top ]News and announcementsReminder to all: Nominations for Better World Showcase 2018 If you’re engaged in activities (related to your research, teaching, dissemination,…) that have made a difference, e.g., that - are of benefit to the society in general or - contribute to environmental sustainability or - are related to public engagement or - contribute to widening participation or - inspire (local) communities or - ... please let me know (email firstname.lastname@example.org) asap: the nominations for the Faculty’s Better World Showcase 2018 are now open (until October 31st) - I am happy to help with your nomination and would love to see the great work that various member of our school have made in the last year being recognised at the Better World Showcase (these will then also feed into the Making a Difference Awards later). So: please drop me a line if you want to know more or have questions about this!
The Library acquires access to Elsevier’s full dataset of subscribed content for text mining purposes What is it? The Library has acquired access to Elsevier’s full dataset of subscribed content allowing The University of Manchester staff and students to use it for text data mining purposes. The dataset consists of all the material UoM has access rights to under our current subscription agreement. Changes to UK Copyright Law now make it legal for our researchers to text mine data for non-commercial purposes, to which the Library subscribes or owns. Historically, it has been very difficult to extract this data using publisher platforms. In response to this, the Library has set up a delivery platform to allow academics to access the data in XML format and to map the dataset to their local network drive. How do you access it? Academics can access the dataset by requesting access via LANDESK Go to Support Centre Online Login to LANDESK Switch to Self Service Click on request a service Choose Library enquiries from left hand menu Click on Elsevier published data access request Once a user agrees to the Terms and Conditions and sends the request, the Library will enable access using the individual’s central username and password (please allow 7 working days for access). The Library will then send a link to the shared drive, allowing the user to map the dataset to a network drive. Benefits of dataset for TDM research Gemma Smith in the Academic Engagement Team in the Library has been liaising with members of staff within the School of Computer Science with a special interest in TDM to get initial feedback on the dataset before it is launched to the School as a whole. The key benefits of the dataset are that that it is in XML format, which helps the text mining process greatly. Also the dataset contains high quality scholarly articles, which may add credence to grant proposals that are submitted because researchers will be able to draw upon reputable scholarly material, adding greater weight and impact to their research findings. Also access to and use of the dataset is likely to attract cross collaboration on research projects; not only because of the quality of the dataset, but also the high level of people expertise to text mine the data efficiently. Further feedback from academics is very welcome. If you have any queries regarding the Elsevier dataset, please contact your Academic Engagement Librarian Gemma Smith – email@example.com
Jon Ashley (Head of Estates Support) would like to ask all lecturers using CTS rooms to:
· Ensuring all teaching session are completed and classes dismissed at the latest by 10 minutes to the end of the booked session.
· Give particular attention to fire evacuation arrangements and actively reminding students to be vigilant and to familiarise themselves with the buildings they use (closest emergency exits etc.)
More information on the fire evacuation awareness campaign can be found here
[ top ]EventsFood Bank Volunteering opportunities in Manchester Volunteering at the Food Drives involves collecting food and cash donations from customer at the relevant Tesco store. On the day we base ourselves in the lobby of the Tesco store and hand out foodbank 'shopping lists' to customers entering the store, we then collect any food/cash donations from customers as they leave. The Piccadilly Train station collections are cash collections only, so our volunteer teams will be based in the station, with foodbank collection buckets, to receive any cash donations from commuters in the station. The relevant dates/times are as follows; • Saturday 7th October (Tesco Gorton Extra Food Drive 10am-4pm) • Friday 27th October (Piccadilly Train Station collection 7am-5pm) • Saturday 28th October (Tesco Prestwich Food Drive 10am-4pm) • Friday 24th November (Piccadilly Train Station collection 7am-5pm) • Thursday 30th November-Saturday 2nd December (Tesco Gorton & Quay Street Food Drives 10am-4pm) If any interested volunteers could get in touch with my colleague Amy via email at fundraising@ManchesterCentral.foodbank.org.uk we can send them all the relevant information. While the events last all day, in terms of the food drives we are happy for people to volunteer for as little or as long as they like. In terms of the Piccadilly Collections, due to station rules around collections, we require volunteers to commit to one of the following three time slots (7am-11am; 11am-3pm; and 3pm-5pm). Please also note that we can reimburse basic travel costs (e.g. bus/metrolink tickets) for volunteers attending any of the events too.Walking our way to a healthier heart, togetherNokia and the Connected Health Cities (CHC) project have teamed up to host an 8-week steps challenge for the North of England. More activity leads to better heart health, so our goal is to motivate citizens to walk more—and ultimately reach 200 million total steps each week.
Join now to connect and compete with others in your region, be in for a chance to win Nokia health devices, and have fun—all while improving your health. All you need to participate is the free Nokia Health Mate app.
[ top ]Sustainability and Green Impact News
The School of Computer Science Green Impact Team has made its first submission towards annual accreditation. Green Impact Universities and Colleges is an environmental accreditation scheme with a competitive streak that helps and supports university and college departments to improve their environmental performance.
From humble beginnings with just the University of Bristol piloting the programme in 2008/09, NUS partnered with the EAUC to roll Green Impact Universities and Colleges into a further 18 universities via NUS' wider Degrees Cooler programme, funded by Defra's prestigious Greener Living Fund in 2009/10. Three additional universities joined the programme in 2009/10 on a self funded basis, and in 2010/11 were joined by a further fourteen institutions taking the total number of participating institutions to 35.
In 2012/13 the programme expanded further, with 54 participating institutions. For futher information please visit here.
Going forward we would welcome increased membership for the team - please give some time - its very worthwhile and we have fun too!
Email Computer Science Green Impact Team: COMPSCI-GREENIMPACT@listserv.manchester.ac.uk