University of North Texas
CSE Alumni Email Newsletter

December 2005  

CSE News

Alumni News

Student News

College of Engineering
   News

UNT News

Greetings from the CSE Chairman

Dear Alumni and Friends,

As the end of our semester approaches, I write to share with you the news from our Department of Computer Science and Engineering. This Fall, Rada Mihalcea received a grant from Google. Her research was highlighted in the previous alumni email newsletter. This issue focuses on Dr. Saraju Mohanty's research in his VLSI Design and CAD Laboratory and Dr. Steve Tate's research in computer security and cryptography.

I am very pleased to announce that Professor David Rosenblum, one of our distinguished alumni, will present a colloquium for our students on Friday, December 9th. You are invited to attend his presentation here at Research Park at 10:30 a.m. Please read more information about his presentation below.

It has been great communicating to you the progress we are making at the CSE department. We are also very pleased to hear from many of you and receive financial support from some of you. We hope to hear from more of you. There are many ways for you to join in the life of YOUR department. In this newsletter you will find more details on the many ways you can contribute to the growth of the department. With your help, we can continue to improve our reputation and our national ranking. Did you know that alumni support is one of the criteria used by US News and World Report in arriving at university rankings?

I hope you will come back to UNT and become involved in your CSE department.

Sincerely,

Krishna M. Kavi
Chairman

Department of Computer Science and Engineering News

Google Awards Grant to Rada Mihalcea

Rada Mihalcea In September 2005, Rada Mihalcea, CSE Assistant Professor, received $107,112 from Google Inc. in support of her research, "Finding Important Information in Unstructured Text: Algorithms for Keyphrase and Sentence Extraction." She plans to use the award to continue her research during the next two years.

"We want to develop ways to better access the information in books. This could take the form of back-of-the-book indices or succinct summaries," said Mihalcea in the UNT publication, InHouse. "We are hoping that this research will enable new ways of accessing the information that is stored in very large documents such as books. This won't replace book reading, but it will be a valuable interface that people can use to better determine if they are interested in a particular book."

For more information about this grant, read this UNT press release or this story in the North Texas Daily. For more details on the Rada Mihacea's research group, visit http://lit.csci.unt.edu.


CSE Department and College of Engineering
Participate in Homecoming Festivities

A CSE alumna and her son watch the robots race along with Dr. Robert Brazile, Dr. Oscar Garcia and Dr. Kathy Swigger.
Computer Science sophomore, Brittany Bruno, helps a young boy play a game developed by LARC students.

The Computer Science and Engineering Department, in collaboration with the entire College of Engineering, participated in the 2005 Homecoming activities this year by hosting a tent in the Mean Green Village on Saturday, November 19. Each Department in the College provided poster displays and brochures and contributed to a continuously-running presentation highlighting some of the features and activities of each department, visible throughout the pavilion via several LCD displays.

In addition, CSE faculty and students provided the attention-getters for the pavilion by providing a Robot Race where visitors could bet on the winning robot for prizes. The robots and maze are part of the equipment used for the RoboCamp Summer Experience for young women sponsored by the department. Student-developed games from the LARC were also on display at two gaming centers where visitors could try out the games with assistance from CSE students. Additional monitors provided onlookers with a duplicate view as the players battled killer squirrels, invading aliens and samurai warriors.

During the event many of our faculty and students had a chance to visit with prospective students, alumni and retired faculty, and spread the word about UNT's newest college.


Saraju Mohanty Builds Research Group

Saraju Mohanty Saraju P. Mohanty, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, joined the CSE faculty in Fall 2004 when the department began its graduate program in Computer Engineering. Dr. Mohanty received his Ph.D. from the University of South Florida, Tampa in 2003 with a Master's from Indian Institute of Science, Banaglore, India. He is the author of 30 refereed ACM/IEEE transactions and ACM/IEEE conference papers.

During the last year, Dr. Mohanty has presented papers in three ACM/IEEE conferences. He presented "A Dual Dielectric Approach for Performance Aware Gate Tunneling Reduction in Combinational Circuits" at the 23rd IEEE International Conference of Computer Design (ICCD), San Jose, CA in October 2005. He presented "Analytical Modeling and Reduction of Direct Tunneling Current during Behavioral Synthesis of Nanometer CMOS Circuits" at the 14th ACM/IEEE International Workshop on Logic and Synthesis (IWLS) with partial travel support from ACM-SIGDA held in Lake Arrowhead, CA in June 2005. He presented "Reduction of Direct Tunneling Power Dissipation during Behavioral Synthesis of Nanometer CMOS Circuits", at the IEEE Computer Society Annual Symposium on VLSI (ISVLSI) held in Tampa, FL in May 2005.

Dr. Mohanty served as DAC/ISSCC student design contest judge for the 42nd design automation conference in 2005 and technical review committee member for Global Signal Processing Expo and Conference (GSPx), 2005.

Dr. Mohanty has established a very strong research group, which includes one Ph.D. and 6 M.S. Computer Science as well as Computer Engineering students. His research group pursues cutting edge research in several areas, such as CAD and Modeling for Nanoscale, VLSI Circuits, Synthesis and Optimization for Low Power, Power Aware System Design, and VLSI Architecture for Security and Copyright Protection. Further information about his research can be obtained at: http://www.vdcl.cse.unt.edu.

This semester Dr. Mohanty has been teaching CSCE 6651, Advanced VLSI Design. In Spring 2006, he will teach two courses, CSCE 4730, VLSI Design and CSCE 5730 Digital CMOS/VLSI Design. These two courses are the core for VLSI curriculum and provide strong foundations to computer engineering as well as electrical engineering students interested in VLSI.


Computer Security Program Expanding

Steve Tate Stephen R. Tate, Associate Professor, has been working to expand both research and educational opportunities in computer security. In working with Ph.D. student Vandana Gunupudi, Dr. Tate is preparing to release SAgent, a major security framework implementation for the JADE mobile agent platform. This software will be the first major easy-to-use implementation of cryptographic protections for general mobile code computation, and papers describing the system design and experimental results have been submitted for publication.

In addition to publications and presentations at recent conferences such as the International Conference on Information Security, and the Symposium on Information and Security, Dr. Tate has served on the program committee of many security conferences, including among others the International Workshop on Security in Networks and Distributed Systems, and the IASTED International Conference on Communication, Network and Information Security. Dr. Tate also is on the founding editorial board of a new journal, the Journal of Information Assurance and Security (JIAS).

Dr. Tate is launching a new research initiative in hardware-assisted security, looking into ways of increasing security and trust in distributed applications by making small changes in computer hardware. The first major step of this initiative is a Spring 2006 offering of CSCE 6933, an advanced topics course in hardware-assisted security. This course will be seminar-style, examining current research in this area, and students will be encouraged to "push the boundaries" with the goal of producing publishable research results.

On the educational side, Dr. Tate was involved in the first Texas Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition, coaching a team of 8 students (6 from CSE and 2 from the College of Business's Information Technology and Decision Sciences program) that participated in this contest in San Antonio in April. In this first-of-its-kind contest, student teams spent three days locking down and managing a small corporate-style network from attacks by a professional penetration testing team while still keeping the network functioning and available. Dr. Tate described the experience at the Colloquium for Information Systems Security Education in Atlanta, on a panel which was the highest evaluated panel discussion at the 4-day event. Dr. Tate is currently organizing a team for the next competition which will be held in March 2006.


Other Faculty News

Krishna Kavi, CSE Chair, served on the Program Committee for MEDEA-2005 held September 17-21 in Saint Louis, MO. Afrin Naz, CSE Ph.D. student, Krishna Kavi, Wentong Li, CSE Ph.D. student, and Mehran Rezaei, Ph.D. 2004 and Visiting Assistant Professor at University of Texas at Arlington, authored "Making a Case for Split Data Caches for Embedded Applications." Afrin Naz presented this paper at the Workshop on Memory performance dealing with applications, systems and architecture (MEDEA- 2005), which was held in conjunction with Parallel Architectures and Compiler Technology (PACT-2005) conference.

Krishna Kavi also served on two other program committees during the second half of 2005: IEEE International Conference on Information Reuse and Integration, IRI-2005, August 15-17, 2005, Las Vegas; and the International Conference on Algorithms and Architectures for Parallel Processing, ICA3PP-2005, October 2-5, 2005, Melbourne, Australia.

Rada Mihalcea, Assistant Professor, was a guest editor of a special issue of the Journal of Natural Language Engineering on "Parallel Texts" (Cambridge University Press), which appeared in September 2005.

Armin Mikler, Associate Professor, and Courtney Corley, CSE M.S. student, authored "Predicting Human Papilloma Virus Prevalence and Vaccine Policy Effectiveness in Demographic Strata." Courtney presented the paper at the IEEE 5th Symposium on Bioinformatics and Bioengineering held October 19-21, 2005, in Minneapolis, MN.

Armin Mikler was invited to give a talk "From Mathematical Models to Computational Epidemiology" at the National Cancer Institutes in Washington, D.C. on October 31, 2005. Dr. Mikler also presented "Computational Epidemiology: Facilitating Epidemiological Research through Computational Tools" at Iowa State University in Ames, IA on November 10, 2005.

Alumni News

UNT CSE Alumnus to Present Colloquium

David Rosenblum

Professor David S. Rosenblum will present "Content-Based Publish/Subscribe: Achievements and Challenges" at a CSE Colloquium on Friday, December 9, at 10:30 a.m. in NTRP B155. Professor Rosenblum received a B.S. summa cum laude in 1982 and M.S. in 1983 in Computer Sciences from North Texas State University (now UNT) and a Ph.D. from Stanford University. The following paragraph is an abstract of Professor Rosenblum's presentation.

For nearly a decade there has been a great deal of research on content-based publish/subscribe, in which a network of specialized routers is used to support publish/subscribe-style communication within distributed applications deployed over wide-area networks. This research has produced a number of novel router architectures, matching algorithms, routing protocols, implementation prototypes and other results that have been designed to achieve high throughput, scalability and expressive power in specific deployment scenarios. But the research has also revealed some difficult challenges stemming from the intrinsic content-based nature of the communication style, including challenges related to security, to mobility, and to the proper alignment of application characteristics with infrastructure characteristics. This talk will present an overview of this line of work, discussing the successes and limitations of past results as well as key problems that must be addressed in future work in order for content-based publish/subscribe to realize its true potential.

Currently, Professor Rosenblum is Professor of Software Systems in the Department of Computer Science at University College London and is Director of London Software Systems, a research institute established jointly by the Software Systems Engineering Group at UCL and the Distributed Software Engineering Group at Imperial College London. His research interests are in distributed event-based computing and software validation. He currently holds a Wolfson Research Merit Award from the Royal Society of the UK.

Before joining University College London, Professor Rosenblum was Chief Technology Officer at PreCache Inc., a startup company working in publish/subscribe technology. In 2002 he received the International Conference on Software Engineering's Most Influential Paper Award for his ICSE 1992 paper on assertion checking in C programs. He is an Associate Editor of the ACM Transactions on Software Engineering and Methodology and is currently the Chair of the ICSE Steering Committee. He is a Fellow of the IEEE (effective 2006), a Fellow of the IEE and a Chartered Fellow of the BCS.


Alumni Invited to Come Back to UNT
as a "Professor for a Day"

Kathy Foster and Yan Huang
Kathy Foster (M.S. 1979), Senior Member
of the Technical Staff at Texas Instruments,
received her "Professor for a Day"
certificate for her presentation in
Dr. Yan Huang's database class. Kathy is
also a member of the CSE Advisory Council.
The UNT College of Engineering and Department of Computer Science and Engineering will celebrate National Engineers Week February 20-26, 2006. Once again we would like to invite our alumni to participate in the festivities. One of the programs well suited to our alumni is the "Professor for a Day" program in which you have the opportunity to share your knowledge and experience with an undergraduate or graduate class of students during the week.

We would welcome the opportunity to have you discuss your career experiences in Computer Science and Computer Engineering related fields with our current students. There are many class times available in the morning, afternoon and evening. Please contact David Keathly at dkeathly@cse.unt.edu or (940) 565-4801 if you would like to participate in this popular and expanding program.


CSE Department Seeks Assistance from Alumni

As our programs in Computer Science and Computer Engineering grow and change to meet the challenges of new technology and shifting demands from industry, our faculty and advisors seek your assistance in a number of critical areas of need.

1. Beginning in the Fall of 2006, the Computer Engineering students will begin taking the Senior Design course sequence for the first time. We would like to have industry-sponsored projects for them to tackle, as well as industry mentors and resources to interact with during the process.

2. Many of our students enjoy having the opportunity to perform independent research and development work through the Directed Studies course. These could also benefit from industry projects and sponsorship. These projects are usually on a smaller scale than those used in the Capstone Design courses. Typically a directed study is completed either by a single student or a small team of two to three students.

3. In order to attract quality graduates and undergraduates to our programs, sponsored scholarships and research fellowships are needed. Many companies have programs and funds to sponsor such efforts. Please check with your employer and encourage them to invest in the UNT Computer Science and Engineering program. Private donors are also welcomed and encouraged.

4. Our program can also benefit from donations-in-kind of equipment or funding to purchase equipment and set up student research and exploratory labs. Having equipment that provides exposure to a variety of platforms and tools enhances the skills set of our students and makes them more attractive to potential employers.

5. We are also looking for a sponsor to assist us in providing some small gift to our graduating students at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. Many departments provide some small memento that represents the university, the department and their major to each graduating student. Perhaps your company would be interested in sponsoring such a program.

If you or your employer are interested in any of these areas, please contact either our Department Chair, Dr Krishna Kavi, at kavi@cse.unt.edu or our undergraduate advisor, David Keathly, at dkeathly@cse.unt.edu.

We want to hear from you! What have you been doing since graduating from UNT? Please send a few paragraphs and a picture to AlumniFocus@cse.unt.edu.

CSE Student News

Programming Team Finishes Third in
ACM Regional Programming Competition

Jack Lindamood, John Rizzo and Michael Mohler with their third place prizes.

The UNT team of Jack Lindamood, John Rizzo and Michael Mohler are to be congratulated on their third place finish at the ACM Regional Programming Competition at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, LA on November 11 and 12, 2005.

This team solved 6 of 8 problems and finished behind a Rice University team who solved 7 of 8 problems and a University of Texas at Dallas team who also solved 6 of 8 problems, but in slightly less time. This is the best finish for UNT at this contest in the past 6 or 7 years.

Two other UNT teams also competed. Team CSEagles consisted of Tyler Cole, Chris Gibson and Hector Guillermo Cuellar Rios. Team CSEagles II included Chris Sims, Andrew Dittman and William Garner. These first time competitors, including several freshmen and sophomores, gained a lot of experience for future contests.

Our ACM region, which consists of Oklahoma, Texas and Louisiana, had approximately 50 teams from about 25 schools competing this year. In the spring, our programming teams will compete at East Central University, SMU and in the IBM Online World Competition.

For more information on these programming events, contact the Team Coach, David Keathly, at dkeathly@cse.unt.edu.


Students Invited to Join ACM

ACM The Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), founded in 1947, has had a major role in advancing the skills of information technology professionals and students worldwide. Over 80,000 members and the public turn to ACM for the industry's leading Portal to Computing Literature, authoritative publications and pioneering conferences, providing leadership for the 21st century.

The UNT student chapter of the ACM coordinates several activities, such as high school programming competitions, student/faculty mixers and development projects. ACM's goal is to facilitate the means to give our student members a competing edge to future employers. Employers always look for extracurricular work, especially that involving team work.

Membership in the ACM includes benefits such as access to thousands of research papers, reduced costs for attending conferences, networking opportunities, and more! Any persons interested in applying for membership should visit our ACM chapter website at http://acm.csci.unt.edu, and contact one of our officers for details.


Undergraduate Advising Forums Announced

The CSE Undergraduate Advisors are pleased to announce two new services for students. The first is a set of online forums available at http://www.cse.unt.edu/forums beginning Spring 2006. One forum will provide a regularly updated list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ), while the other will provide a means for students to pose questions to the advisors and receive a response, as well as be able to view past questions and responses.

The second service is the introduction of once-a-semester "town hall" style advising meetings where questions can be addressed live with the departmental advisors. For more information, contact David Keathly (dkeathly@cse.unt.edu) or Dr. Ryan Garlick (garlick@cse.unt.edu).


CSEagles Applications Available to Students

Applications are currently available for the new CSEagles program created as a result of a Texas Technology Workforce Development Grant received this year by Dr. Robert Akl and David Keathly. This program will award ten scholarships of $1,000 each ($500 per semester) to women enrolled full-time in the Computer Science or Computer Engineering programs at UNT. Those chosen will be required to participate in a number of recruiting and mentoring activities throughout the normal academic year to support the department in attracting and retaining female students.

Additional eligibility requirements for the program as well as expectations and duties can be found here. Applications are available here. Applications should be submitted by email to dkeathly@cse.unt.edu. There will be a training course in December and duties will begin in the Spring 2006 semester.


Scholarship Opportunities in Computer Security

As a part of UNT's designation as a Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education by the National Security Agency, U.S. citizens studying computer security at UNT are eligible to apply for scholarships through the Department of Defense (DoD) Information Assurance Scholarship Program. These scholarships cover all tuition and room and board expenses, as well as pay a stipend to students, and are designed for students with two years of study remaining in their degree program (either undergraduate or graduate).

In return for the scholarship, students agree to work as an intern for a DoD organization between the two supported years, and commit to two years of employment by the DoD after graduating. These are very generous scholarships, but are competitive on a national scale. Top students with two years remaining in their degree program are encouraged to contact Dr. Stephen Tate at srt@cs.unt.edu for more information.

College of Engineering News

Society of Women Engineers Form Student Chapter

Society of Women Enginners

The UNT College of Engineering held its first informational meeting about forming a student chapter of the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) on November 10, 2005. Carol Bachman, Project Manager for Peterbilt, and Susanne Nickerson, Associate Design Engineer for Peterbilt, spoke about forming a SWE student chapter at UNT.

The objectives of SWE are:
  1. To inform young women of the qualifications and achievements of women engineers and the opportunities open to them.
  2. Assist women in preparing themselves for the work force.
  3. Serve as a center of information on women in engineering.
  4. Encourage women engineers to attain high levels of education and professional achievement.
  5. Establish network opportunities for student engineers with professional engineers.

To receive a SWE student charter, UNT must have a minimum of 10 students who are either freshmen, sophomores, or juniors to join SWE. Seniors and graduate students may also join, but they cannot be counted towards the minimum number to receive a student charter. Student membership in SWE is $20.

The group plans to have another meeting after Thanksgiving and invites other students to attend. For more information about SWE, please contact Ms. Leticia Anaya, UNT SWE Student Chapter Sponsor, at Let_ana@msn.com or Lanaya@unt.edu or by calling (469) 831-2453 or Ms. Haritha Namduri, UNT SWE President, at hn0012@unt.edu.


World Renowned Researcher Joins Electrical Engineering Faculty

Wuqiang Yang The College of Engineering's Department of Electrical Engineering has announced that Wuqiang Yang will join the faculty beginning Spring 2006. Dr. Yang is one of the world's leading technology researchers. Most recently he has served as a professor of electronic instrumentation in the School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering at the University of Manchester in the United Kingdom.

Dr. Yang plans to create an internationally recognized research center at UNT by organizing a tomography consortium with several North American universities and companies. He has won several awards in the field of electrical capacitance tomography (ECT), a new technique for gathering information about the contents of closed pipes or vessels and producing cross-sectional images. Dr. Yang is using ECT to work with homeland security and also with the oil industry to visualize gas and oil pipelines.

Dr. Yang received his bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees from Tsinghua University in Beijing. He has received several awards for his contributions to the development of ECT technology. Recently the International Center for Scientific Research in France has recognized Dr. Yang as one of the top 20 technology researchers in the world.

For more about Dr. Wuqiang Yang joining the College of Engineering, please read this UNT press release from November 2, 2005.

University of North Texas News

UNT President Norval Pohl to Leave in 2006;
Search Committee includes CENG Dean Garcia

In July 2005, President Norval Pohl announced his plans to leave the University of North Texas in 2006. In November 2005, Chancellor Lee F. Jackson announced a 19 member search advisory committee to identify candidates for the position of President of the University of North Texas.

The search committee includes:

  • Three representatives from the UNT Board of Regents: Committee Co- chairs Gayle Strange of Denton and Robert Nickell of Dallas, as well as Regent Charles "Chuck" Beatty of Waxahachie.
  • Six members of the UNT faculty: Dr. Dennis Engels, Regents professor of counseling, development and higher education; Dr. Art Goven, professor and chair of the Department of Biological Sciences; Dr. Mark McKnight, music librarian; Dr. Gus Seligmann, associate professor of history; Marcia Staff, Regents professor of finance, insurance, real estate and law; and Dr. Frances van Tassell, associate professor of teacher education and administration and chair of the faculty senate.
  • One dean: Dr. Oscar N. Garcia of the College of Engineering.
  • Two students: David Hall, Student Government Association president; and Tobye Nelson, Graduate Student Council president.
  • Two staff members: Phil Diebel, vice president for finance and business affairs; and Michelle Hale, staff council chair
  • .
  • Five community leaders: Frank Bracken, businessman and UNT Foundation Board member (BBA '63); Euline Brock, Denton Mayor (Ph.D. '74); Bill Lively, president and chief executive officer, Dallas Center for the Performing Arts Foundation (MME '70); Eva Poole, director, Denton Public Library, friend of UNT; and Dr. Victor Rodriguez, retired San Antonio ISD School Superintendent and former track team member (BA '55, MS '62).

For more information, please see this UNT press release.

The CSE Email Newsletter was assembled and produced by Genene Murphy and Don Retzlaff. It is a publication of the UNT Computer Science and Engineering Department. Contact the department at csenewsletter@unt.edu.

If you would like to receive this newsletter as text rather than formatted in HTML, please contact Don Retzlaff at donr@unt.edu.

http://www.cse.unt.edu UNT Computer Science and Engineering Department     December 2005