Department of Computer Science and Engineering News
CSE Department Welcomes New Faculty
Hubert Bahr joined the Department of Computer Science and Engineering in
Summer 2005 as an Adjunct Professor. Dr. Bahr obtained his Ph.D. in
Computer Engineering from the University of Central Florida (UCF) in 2004
and his M.S. in Computer Engineering from UCF in 1994. He received his
Professional Engineering License from Oklahoma in 1977 and his B.S.E. from
the University of Oklahoma in 1972.
Dr. Bahr's research interests are reconfigurable architectures for embedded
computing and software engineering for embedded simulation. He is a senior
member of IEEE and a member of ACM.
In Fall 2005, he is teaching CSCE 3610, Machine Structures, and CSCE 5420,
Software Development. Dr. Bahr's webpage can be found at http://www.cse.unt.edu/~hab/.
Hao Li is an Assistant Professor in the Computer Science and Engineering
department. He earned his Ph.D. in Computer Science and Engineering from
the University of South Florida in 2004. He earned his B.E. and M.S. from
Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications, Beijing China in 1995
and 1999, respectively.
His research interests include VLSI Design and CAD, FPGA Synthesis, and
Electronic Design Automation. He has published several research papers in
areas of VLSI Design Automation. His paper was nominated for the best paper
award at the Asia and South Pacific Design Automation Conference in 2003.
He is a member of IEEE and ACM SIGDA.
Dr. Li is teaching CSCE 3730, Reconfigurable Logic, this semester. His
faculty website is located at http://www.cse.unt.edu/~hli.
Charles Shields is currently a Lecturer at the University of North Texas.
He earned his B.A. degree in Mathematics from the University of Texas in
Austin, and his Masters and Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University
of Texas at Dallas. His research interests in Computer Science include
various topics in Parallel Computation as well as Security.
Dr. Shields also holds a law degree from Southern Methodist University.
Although he has never practiced, his studies included course work in
Intellectual Property and E-Commerce.
Dr. Shields values teaching and university environments very much.
Facilitating and participating in the learning process is a great joy to
him. This semester Dr. Shields is teaching one section of CSCE 1010,
Introduction to Computers, and two sections of CSCE 1030,
Computer Science I. His website is http://www.cse.unt.edu/~shields.
SCOPES 2005 Hosted by UNT CSE Department
The 9th International Workshop on Software and Compilers for Embedded
Systems, also known as SCOPES 2005, was held in Dallas from September 29
through October 1, 2005. Many of the CSE faculty were involved in
hosting this conference, including Dr. Krishna Kavi serving as one of
the two General Conference Chairs; Dr. Phil Sweany as a Program Co-Chair;
Dr Hubert Bahr as Local Arrangements Chair; and David Keathly as
|Dr. Roy Ju delivers the
The conference drew attendees not only from the Dallas area, but also
from across the United States and many parts of Europe. Keynote speakers
were: Dr. Roy Ju, formerly with Intel and now with Google, Inc., who
spoke about "A Programming System for Network Processors"; and Dr. Wayne
Wolf from Princeton University on "Embedded Video Computation:
Challenges to Software and Hardware Designers." A tutorial entitled
"Code optimizations for efficient embedded systems" was held on
Thursday. The sessions on Friday and Saturday included Real-Time
Systems, Optimizations and Memory Systems, as well as a Panel Discussion
on "Software Engineering for Embedded Systems: How useful are the new
This was the first time the workshop has been held in the United States,
having been hosted the previous eight years in Europe. There were
approximately 50 people in attendance, including students from UNT and
University of Texas at Dallas. The workshop also received financial
support from the National Science Foundation and ARTIST2.
RoboCamp 2005: A CSE Success
Young women at Dallas RoboCamp work
Robots create RoboArt
The Computer Science and Engineering department hosted two one-week camps
this summer for 9th to 11th grade young women with a focus on Robotics and
Computer Science. This program, which will be repeated again next year, was
funded as part of a grant from the Texas Coordinating Board for Higher
Education as part of the Technology Workforce Development Program.
The camps were held at the Research Park and at the UNT Dallas Campus. The
department worked with the Cross Timbers Girl Scout Council to help promote
the event. Each camp was attended by approximately 17 young women who built
small robots and programmed them to use various sensors, including touch,
visible light and infrared, and to perform various tasks, including a
student-generated idea for creating RoboArt.
The students also participated in seminars on a variety of topics,
including preparing for college and Women in Computer Science and
Engineering. CSE students also helped with the camp as teaching assistants.
The grant, awarded to Dr. Robert Akl and David Keathly, also includes
components to further assist in the recruitment of women and minorities in
Engineering and Computer Science.
The mobile laboratory and the robots used for the camp will form the basis
for a series of recruiting trips and seminars throughout the DFW area
during the academic year to help foster interest in Engineering and
Computer Science at local middle schools and high schools.
RoboCamp was featured on page 7 of the Fall 2005 alumni magazine,
The North Texan. Additional information regarding RoboCamp,
including pictures from the event and video clips from CNN Coverage, can
be found at http://www.cse.unt.edu/robocamp.
Ram Dantu Researches VoIP Security
Ram Dantu, Assistant Professor in the Department of Computer Science and
Engineering, has emerged as a leader in the field of Voice over IP
(VoIP) Security. Dr. Dantu chaired the 1st VoIP Security workshop, in
conjunction with Globecom, an IEEE conference, held in December 2004 in
Dallas. Then in June 2005, Dr. Dantu served as the Program Chair for the
2nd Securing VoIP workshop held in Washington, D.C. More than 260 people
from business, government and academia attended these two workshops
which were sponsored by Nokia, Samsung, Lucent, BearingPoint, Juniper
Networks and 10 other companies. Dr. Dantu was quoted in this article
about the conference.
Also in June 2005, Dr. Dantu served as a panelist for "What do you mean
'Secure VoIP?'" at the 5th International Enterprise Networking and
Services Conference at Supercomm, the largest telecommunication
conference, for which more information can be found at http://www.ieee-entnet.org/.
At MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) in July 2005, Dr. Dantu and
Prakash Kolan, CSE Ph.D. student, presented "Detecting SPAM in VoIP
Networks" at the SRUTI (Steps to Reduce Unwanted Traffic on the Internet)
workshop, sponsored by USENIX, the Advanced Computing Systems Association.
IT reporter Tim Greene wrote about the workshop and Dr. Dantu's research
in Network World. This article also appeared here
in TechWorld, an online publication in the United Kingdom, and here
in ARNnet, an Australian online journal.
These workshops have been very productive for writing National Science
Foundation funding proposals. Dr. Dantu submitted a proposal to the NSF
on research infrastructure for VoIP Security with collaborators from
Columbia University, Purdue University and University of California at
Davis and UNT as the lead organization. In August 2005, the NSF awarded
Dr. Dantu a grant of $60,150 for conducting research in voice spamming.
For an IEEE Network Magazine Special Issue on Securing Voice over IP, Dr.
Dantu is serving as Guest Editor. The paper submission deadline is October
2005 and the issue will be published in 2006. For more information about
submitting a paper go to this
This Fall Dr. Dantu is teaching CSCE 5520, Wireless Networks and
Protocols, and CSCE 6581, Advanced Computer Networks. For more
information about Dr. Dantu's research, please visit his webpage:
Rada Mihalcea Reports on the
Language and Information Technologies Lab
Members of the Language and Information Technologies (LIT) research lab
(left to right): Samer Hassan, Andras Csomai, Chris Loza, Andy Borman,
Prof. Rada Mihalcea, Kino Coursey, Prof. Jiangping Chen. Missing from the
group picture, shown in the upper-right corner: Prof. Paul Tarau, Ben
Leong, Prof. Elizabeth Figa, Ehsan Faruque. Collaborators: Courtney
The Language and Information Technologies (LIT) group is working
on many exciting projects addressing topics in natural language processing,
machine learning and information retrieval. The members of the LIT group
had many recent accomplishments, including conference and workshop
presentations, system demonstrations and tutorials.
The group's recent work on word sense disambiguation resulted in a paper
that will be presented in October 2005 by Rada Mihalcea at the HLT/EMNLP
(Human Language Technology/Empirical Methods in Natural Language
Processing) conference in Vancouver, Canada, as well as a demonstration of
the SenseLearner system made at the ACL (Association for Computational
Linguistics) conference at the University of Michigan in June 2005 by Rada
Mihalcea and Andras Csomai.
An investigation of the application of measures of text semantic similarity
to the recognition of paraphrases and textual entailment has resulted in a
paper by Courtney Corley and Rada Mihalcea published in the ACL workshop
this summer, and another paper that will be presented at the RANLP (Recent
Advances in Natural Language Processing) conference in September 2005 in
Bulgaria by Courtney Corley, Andras Csomai and Rada Mihalcea. Still along
the lines of exploiting semantic resources, but this time involving visual
representations, a system for creating illustrated semantic networks was
described in a AAAI (American Association for Artificial Intelligence)
spring symposium paper presented by Andy Borman, Rada Mihalcea and Paul
The LIT group has also developed a system for automatic summarization. Rada
Mihalcea and Paul Tarau presented a paper at the IA (Intelligent
Applications) conference in Washington, D.C., describing the application of the
system to multi-document summarization. Another paper by the same authors
will be presented in October 2005 at the IJCNLP (International Joint
Conference on Natural Language Processing) conference in Korea showing the
application of this system to texts written in other languages.
Demonstrations of the summarization system were made at the recent ACL and
AAAI conferences. Rada Mihalcea and Samer Hassan will present how systems
for automatic summarization can be used to significantly boost the accuracy
of text classifiers at the RANLP conference this month.
The construction of parallel texts for languages with scarce resources is
another significant research effort by the members of the LIT group. Chris
Loza has been working hard this summer to collect texts for Quechua, Aymara
(both native languages spoken in Bolivia), and Spanish. Work on this topic
will be presented by Chris Loza and Rada Mihalcea at CILLA II, the Second
Conference on Indigenous Languages of Latin America to be held in Austin in
October 2005. Rada Mihalcea was also involved as a co-organizer of an ACL
workshop on "Building and Using Parallel Texts for Languages with Scarce
Resources" held at the University of Michigan in June 2005.
Computational humor and, in particular, humor recognition is the topic of
another current research project. In collaboration with Carlo Strapparava
of IRST (Istituto per la Ricerca Scientifica e Tecnologica), an artificial
intelligence research center in Italy, Rada Mihalcea has shown for the
first time how machine learning techniques can be successfully applied to
humor recognition, with the results of this research being published in the
annual conference of the Cognitive Science Society held in Italy in July
2005, and the HLT/EMNLP conference mentioned earlier.
Other recent accomplishments include the participation of Jiangping Chen in
the TREC (Text REtrieval Conference) question answering evaluations; a
presentation about the automatic acquisition of commonsense knowledge given
by Kino Coursey at Cycorp, a company that researches artificial
intelligence, in Austin and DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects
Agency) in Washington, D.C.; a tutorial given by Rada Mihalcea at the ACL and
AAAI conferences on word sense disambiguation; another tutorial at Eurolan
on how to add a new language on the NLP map; and an upcoming RANLP tutorial
on graph-based algorithms for NLP.
In September 2005, Rada Mihalcea 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
"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
For more details on the LIT research group, visit: http://lit.csci.unt.edu
Ian Parberry's Summer of Microsoft
This summer Dr. Ian Parberry obtained funding from Microsoft for two new
projects. The first project involves the creation of a pedagogical game
engine that can be used to teach game programming to undergraduate students.
Work is already underway on this project, and can be viewed at http://larc.csci.unt.edu/edge. The
second project involves using game technology for algorithm animation, one
of Dr. Parberry's favorite subjects. The funds are being used to hire three
students in Dr. Parberry's lab.
Microsoft funded two separate trips to its Redmond campus this Summer. The
first trip was to attend the Microsoft Faculty Summit July 17-19. Dr.
Parberry's team displayed a poster there on the pedagogical game engine,
which can be seen at the above URL.
Dr. Parberry said, "The Faculty Summit was an exciting time with many
interesting research talks, and most notably a breakout session on computer
game programming in computer science education, at which I gave my talk from
SIGCSE 2005. The high point of the meeting was the banquet, held on a boat
cruise in Puget Sound."
During his second trip to Redmond, Dr. Parberry attended Microsoft DirectX
Meltdown July 26-27. He described his trip, "There were many fascinating
talks about the changes ahead for DirectX in the next year, some of which I
can even talk about. I came home with an Xbox 360 game controller on a USB
cable and some interesting pictures of me shooting pool with the Superheroes
of Game Development. And, for once, it wasn't raining in Seattle."
Other Faculty News
Robert Akl, Assistant Professor, was invited to serve as Distinguished
Speaker at College Colloquium Series at the University of Arkansas in
April 2005. Dr. Akl was also the invited speaker at Southern Methodist
University for their Spring Seminar Series in March 2005. The title of
his presentation was "WiFi and WCDMA Network Design." The presentation
is available online at http://www.cse.unt.edu/~rakl/publications.htm.
Yan Huang, Assistant Professor; Brian Harrington, CSE Ph.D. student;
Nandika D'Souza, UNT Materials Science Associate Professor; and Robert
Brazile, CSE Associate Chair, presented "Querying the Content of Images
in Material Science: An Integration of SQL and Map Algebra" at the 17th
International Scientific and Statistical Data Management (SSDBM)
Conference held June 2005 in Santa Barbara, CA.
Yan Huang, Assistant Professor, Liqin Zhang, CSE Ph.D. student, and
Ping Yu, CSE M.S. student, presented "Can We Apply Projection Based Frequent
Pattern Mining Paradigm to Spatial Co-location Mining?" at the 9th
Pacific-Asia Conference on Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining (PAKDD)
in Hanoi, Vietnam in May 2005.
Krishna Kavi, CSE Chair, was quoted in this
article, "Tech Beyond Black Boxes? It
Just Won't Fly" in CNet News in August 2005 on the possibility of using
an air-to-ground connection instead of relying on the black boxes
currently used in airplanes.
Ian Parberry, Professor, was invited by the College of Information and
Mathematical Sciences at Clayton College and State University in
Atlanta, GA in April 2005 to deliver a colloquium on game programming
education and discuss their plans to start a game programming
curriculum. He gave two presentations during his visit: "Experience
With an Industry-Driven Capstone Course on Game Programming'' and "The
Joy of Math for Game Programmers."
Kathleen Swigger, Associate Dean of Research for the College of
Engineering and CSE Professor; Robert Brazile, CSE Associate Chair;
Brian Harrington, CSE Ph.D. student; Xiaobo Peng, CSE Ph.D. student; and
Ferda Alpaslan, UNT CSE Alumna and Professor at Middle East Technical
University in Ankara, Turkey, presented "A Case Study of Student
Software Teams Using Computer-Supported Software" at the IEEE 2005
International Symposium on Collaborative Technologies and Systems (CTS
2005). The conference was held in May 2005 at the Adam's Mark Hotel in
St. Louis, MO.