Departmental happenings

My department has started a blog aimed at increasing public understanding of computer science and raising our profile. The NZ secondary school curriculum and the news media clearly conflate CS (computer science) with IT (information technology), and this must be resisted.

The department’s annual public lecture series is coming up. Detail:

The Gibbons Lectures 2012: The Turing Legacy

The Department of Computer Science is delighted to announce the 2012 Gibbons Lectures. The lectures describe developments in research in Computer Science and are aimed at a general but technical audience – to Computer Science students at all levels, to IT practitioners in other departments and outside the University. The lecture series is memory of Associate Professor Peter Gibbons, who sadly passed away early in 2008.

2012 Synopsis:
Alan Matheson Turing was born in 1912. It is now widely accepted that he was one of the most important founders of both theoretical and practical computing, although he died in 1954 just when the field of computing was getting underway. Many of his contributions were not widely recognized at first, but this year, the hundredth anniversary of his birth, he is being celebrated by a series of events organized world-wide. We are joining the festivities by devoting this year’s Gibbons lectures to Turing and his influence.

Turing’s work was the basis for many areas of computing research and development that are still on-going. We have in New Zealand and our Department researchers who are experts in some of these areas and also experts in Turing and his achievements. The four Gibbons lectures this year will involve University of Auckland speakers discussing four topics in the rough order of Turing’s involvement during his lifetime.

Presented in association with the New Zealand Computer Society.

Schedule of lectures:
Thursday 26 April: Alan Turing and the Unsolvable Problem: To Halt or Not to Halt – That is the Question (Professor Cristian Calude)
Thursday 3 May: NOTE: This lecture was recorded in Nov 2011 and will be webcast only, at http://www.cs.auckland.ac.nz/our_department/Gibbons_Lectures/
Alan Turing and the Secret Cyphers: Breaking the German Codes at Bletchley Park (Professor Jack Copeland)
Thursday 10 May: Alan Turing and the Computing Engine: Turing’s achievements in practical computing (Professor Brian Carpenter and Professor Bob Doran)
Thursday 17 May: Alan Turing and the Artificial Brain: The Development of Artificial Intelligence (Associate Professor Ian Watson)

Where: University of Auckland Conference Centre, 22 Symonds St, Building/room 423-342
When: 5.30pm for refreshments, prior to a 6.00pm start.
Please RSVP to robyn@cs.auckland.ac.nz for catering purposes.

Further information and abstracts are available on the Gibbons Lectures webpage at www.cs.auckland.ac.nz/our_department/Gibbons_Lectures/
Video streaming will be available via the webpage

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