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TKO-äly and some of the best IT employers in Finland are organising a recruitment event for students on 14.12.2016

TKO-äly, an organisation of Computer Science students at the University of Helsinki, and some of the best IT employers in Finland are joining forces for a recruitment event for students at Kumpula. The event takes place in Exactum on Wednesday the 14th of December, 2016 starting at 12:00. Join us for interesting lectures, workshops and casual chatting with representatives from collaborating companies.

New MSc programme in Data Science — apply now!

The University of Helsinki has established a new international Master's programme in Data Science. View a video interview here and see more information on Data Science MSc programme web pages. The call is open now and closes on Jan 12th, 2017.

Video presenting Master's programme in computer science

The renewed Master's programmes at the University of Helsinki will start in autumn 2017, and applications for the programmes will start in December 2016, see news item.

The computer science Master's programme Youtube video is one of the first marketing endeavours for the new programmes

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Mobile cloud computing makes data centres obsolete

Researcher Eemil Lagerspetz intends to move computing from computers to pocket devices and from data centres to homes.

Implementing cloud computing with mobile devices is being studied at the University of Helsinki. Mobile cloud computing refers to computing with smartphones or other mobile or Internet of Things devices in the environment, such as smart TVs or smart fridges. Without mobile devices, cloud computing means carrying out large tasks on computers linked together by network connections. In traditional computing, the tasks are carried out with computers that are physically located in the same space.

 

Workshop on Mobile Services and Edge Computing

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The 3rd Helsinki-HKUST-Tsinghua workshop was chaired by Professor Sasu Tarkoma from University of Helsinki and Dr. Aaron Yi Ding from Technical University of Munich. The workshop was held at the University of Helsinki from July 27th to 29th, 2016.

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Professor Esko Ukkonen invited to the Estonian Academy of Sciences

Professor Esko Ukkonen has been invited to the Estonian Academy of Sciences as a foreign member.

Esko Ukkonen has had contacts to the computer science community in Estonia from the beginning of the 1990s, and he has supervised the work of several Estonian postgraduates. The Estonian Academy of Sciences has 78 ordinary and 21 foreign members.

The First Europe-China Workshop on Big Data Management

Some attenders of this workshopThe first Europe-China workshop on big data management was successfully held on the 16th of May, 2016 at the Department of Computer Science, University of Helsinki. 

This one-day workshop organized by Prof. Jiaheng Lu (University of Helsinki), Prof. Xiaoyong Du (Renmin University of China), and Prof. Christian S. Jensen (Aalborg University, Denmark). The aims of this workshop were to gather experts in big data management to exchange views on cutting-edge data management problems and create opportunities for establishing new collaborations between EU and China computer scientists.

Inter-university research and training centre on information security

The University of Helsinki and Aalto University have set up a joint research centre focusing on information security. The new centre, HAIC (Helsinki-Aalto Centre for Information Security), will coordinate the Master’s-level security education between the university and Aalto, with links to research and doctoral education.

The idea is to build bridges to the industries and gain their support for the education, and e.g. grants for MSc students coming from outside the EU, the head of the Department of Computer Science, Sasu Tarkoma, says.

Computer science undergraduate Petteri Timonen awarded in US science competition

Petteri Timonen, 19, came second in his category of the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) in Phoenix, Arizona.

 

On Friday, 15 May, Timonen, who is studying computer science at the University of Helsinki, was awarded a grant worth 1500 USD, some 1330 euros, in the Systems Software category of the Intel ISEF science competition.
 
As his entry, Timonen submitted a software tool he developed for Finland’s Red Cross to make mobile blood runs around the country as cost-effective as possible. Timonen implemented his tool in cooperation with the Blood Service.

The tool has gained international attention, as no tool like it seems to have been developed anywhere else. Timonen has also negotiated with the American Red Cross by email.

Renewed Carat App Gives a Smart Boost to Battery

 
The Carat Project Team at the University of Helsinki, Department of Computer Science, has published a new version of the popular mobile energy-awareness application.

After launch in June 2012, Carat has helped over 850,000 users, of which 41 per cent have been Android and 59 per cent iOS users, respectively. The new user interface follows modern application design guidelines and presents battery information in a more intuitive and easy to use manner.

- In addition to the new user interface, we have increased the accuracy of the energy saving recommendations of Carat, says Professor Sasu Tarkoma, the leader of this research done at the university.

The user interface features the number of energy intensive applications (Hogs), energy anomalies (Bugs) and user recommendations (Actions) at a glance on the main screen as well as global energy statistics for the device community.

Cover Song Identification Using Compression-based Distance Measures

M.Sc. Teppo E. Ahonen will defend his doctoral thesis Cover Song Identification Using Compression-based Distance Measures on Friday the 1st of April 2016 at 12 o'clock in the University of Helsinki Exactum Building, Auditorium CK112 (Gustaf Hällströminkatu 2b) His opponent is Academy Professor Petri Toiviainen (University of Jyväskylä) and custos Professor Esko Ukkonen (University of Helsinki). The defence will be held in Finnish.

Measuring similarity in music data is a problem with various potential applications. In recent years, the task known as cover song identification has gained widespread attention. In cover song identification, the purpose is to determine whether a piece of music is a different rendition of a previous version of the composition. The task is quite trivial for a human listener, but highly challenging for a computer.

 

Application to Finnish computer science programmes 16 Mar-6 Apr 2016

 
The joint application to computer science programmes given in Finnish is open now.
 
 

Photo: Veikko Somerpuro 2016

 

International BOI 2016 programming contest at the Department of Computer Science

 

The best young programmers around the Baltic Sea will compete in May 2016 at the Department of Computer Science at the University of Helsinki in Baltic Olympiad in Informatics 2016.

 

 

 

 

 

Baltic Olympiad in Informatics (BOI) is a programming contest for countries around the Baltic Sea. The contest has been organized since 1995. This year BOI will take place in Helsinki May 11-15. The contest venue is the Department of Computer Science at the University of Helsinki.

Unique open online programming course starts again at Helsinki University

This is the fifth year in a row that the massive open online course (MOOC) will start at the University of Helsinki. Finns can take the course just for fun, as a part of their upper-secondary education, or even as an entrance exam to the university.

The course is free of charge, and it is so basic that students with no experience of programming can follow it.

Sasu Tarkoma new head of the Department of Computer Science

Since Jukka Paakki announced that he will step down from the post of head of the department on 1 January 2016, Professor Sasu Tarkoma has been elected the new head for the period 1 January 2016-31 December 2017. There were a total of 7 applicants for the position, out of whom the rector decided to appoint Tarkoma on the basis of the proposal by the dean of the Faculty of Science.

The staff of the department would like to congratulate Sasu and wish him success in his new duties. This is a good opportunity to ask our new leader some questions.
 

The university’s team Game of Nolife won Western European programming contest for students

In the finals in Thailand in spring 2016, the students from the University of Helsinki will face the best teams in the world.

The University of Helsinki has won the inter-university NWERC 2015 programming contest that was held in Linköping recently. It was attended by 95 teams from Western Europe. The Game of Nolife team from the University of Helsinki consisted of computer-science and maths students Tuukka Korhonen, Olli Hirviniemi and Otte Heinävaara.

The Carat research team has published a dataset focusing on collaborative energy diagnostics of mobile devices and applications

 

 

The Carat research team from University of Helsinki publishes a dataset from the Carat project (http://carat.cs.helsinki.fi/) focusing on collaborative energy diagnostics of mobile devices and applications. The dataset was presented at the IEEE PerCom’15 conference last spring in the publication "Energy Modeling of System Settings: A Crowdsourced Approach" that won the Marc Weiser Best Paper Award given at the conference.

Eemil Lagerspetz was awarded a grant by the Jorma Ollila fund of Nokia Foundation on November 24, 2015

 

 
 
Eemil Lagerspetz was awarded a grant by the Jorma Ollila fund of Nokia Foundation on November 24, 2015. Congratulations!
 
The fund was launched in year 2014 to support post doctoral research career development. 
The title of Eemil’s post doctoral research is “Mind The Gap: Combining Trajectory Datasets for a Holistic Picture of Human Mobility” and the research will be carried out at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST) in 2016.
 

Collaborative Networking (CoNe) group researchers got the best paper award at 2nd ACM Conference on Information-Centric Networking (ICN 2015)

 

Collaborative Networking (CoNe) group researchers got the best paper award at 2nd ACM Conference on Information-Centric Networking (ICN 2015), one of the most prestigious venues for ICN research. The article entitled Pro-Diluvian: Understanding Scoped-Flooding for Content Discovery in ICN is lead by Liang Wang - a recent PhD graduate from CoNe research group, and is the outcome of collaboration with Suzan Bayhan and Jussi Kangasharju from UH, Jörg Ott from Aalto University, Arjuna Sathiaseelan and Jon Crowcroft from Cambridge University.

Tsinghua Workshop - Strengthen Collaboration with Top Universities in China

 

Together with research teams in Tsinghua University and Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST), Professor Sasu Tarkoma, Prof. Yong Li, and Prof. Pan Hui organized a successful workshop on mobile big data and networking (url:http://fi.ee.tsinghua.edu.cn/2015workshop/) in September 2015.

 

 

Computational modelling sheds new light on core cell functions

An advanced computational model developed by computer scientists has revealed long delays in gene regulation.

 

The fields of genetics and genomics have developed rapidly during the past years, partly due to better computational methods. Now an international research group led by Finnish researchers has developed a new computational model, which has revealed unexpectedly long processing delays in gene expression following a regulatory signal.

Jiaheng Lu: our new Associate Professor

 

Jiaheng Lu (JL) has been nominated as a tenure-track Associate Professor in computer science for a period of five years starting on August 1, 2015. Recruiting foreign professors is an important tool in the internationalization efforts of the University, so a thorough introductory interview by the head of the Department (JP) was a must.

 

 

Petri Myllymäki to be director of HIIT

Petri Myllymäki, professor at the department, has been elected director of HIIT (Helsinki Institute for Information Technology), the joint research institute of the University of Helsinki and Aalto University, for the five-year period starting on 1 August, 2015. Petri will be following Professor Sami Kaski of Aalto University in this post. Since the post of director of HIIT is a fulltime job, Petri (PM) will be relieved of his own professorial duties for the same period, and so the head of the department (JP) saw fit to conduct an exit interview with him.

 

Brain poetry

In the latest research result of the month section, we interview PhD student Jukka Toivanen about his recent work on brain poetry in the Discovery group led by professor Hannu Toivonen. How can humans and machines be creative together?

Kjell Lemström to be new Head of Studies

Since Jaakko Kurhila left the department to head the Open University, we had to find a new university lecturer to act as head of studies in short order. We received a total of 28 applications. Out of these, and after a preliminary qualification round, evaluations, interviews, and a department council hearing, Kjell Lemström (KL) was elected for the post. He started working as the department's Head of Studies on 2 March 2015, so the Head of the department (JP) conducted the following induction interview that very week.

This is by no means the first time Kjell has been employed by the department. He defended his thesis on ‘String Matching Techniques for Music Retrieval’ in 2000, and has held numerous teaching and research positions both before and after that, until he transferred to the Laurea University of Applied Sciences in 2011 (luckily, that was only temporary).

Head of Studies Jaakko Kurhila to head Open University

The Head of Studies at the department, University Lecturer Jaakko Kurhila, has been elected to the post of director of the Open University at the University of Helsinki. It was a tough race: all in all, 39 applicants sought the post, some of them through the Mercuri Urval headhunting process. After a consultant evaluation, interviews, and aptitude assessments, the preparatory committee for the post, the steering committee for the Open University, and the rector of the university came to a unanimous decision to select Jaakko, and the contract is already being drawn up.

Being selected from this prestigious group of applicants, and after such a thorough process, is indisputable proof of the qualifications of Jaakko and the high esteem the academic community has for him. The department extends its warmest congratulations to Jaakko for this career development and is proud of the success of its protégé.

Bridging the Gap Between Research and Standardization

In the fourth research result of the month, we report a joint work between the UH NODES group and the Cambridge NetOS group, lead by Prof. Sasu Tarkoma and Prof. Jon Crowcroft, respectively. Their work recently received the best paper award "Best of CCR" from ACM SIGCOMM.

Discovering Computational Creativity at the University of Helsinki

Computational creativity is a relatively new field among computational sciences, but it already has an active international community of academic researchers. A part of this international community is the Discovery Research Group, run by professor Hannu Toivonen at the University of Helsinki. The group is interested especially in linguistic creativity methods, including methods for the generation of poetry, word associations, humour, and text summarisation. But the group’s efforts have also included musical composition, a human-computer co-creation study and on-going work in pictorial metaphors.

Free-Form Gestures for Mobile Authentication

In the third research result of the month we report on the recent results in gesture-based authentication of users on mobile devices. We interview Assistant Professor Teemu Roos regarding the recent accepted scientific article in the top-tier ACM MobiSys 2014 conference.

 

Strategy seminar of the Department 2014

The strategy seminar for the Department of Computer Science was arranged at the Kisakallio sports institute in Lohja on 26-27 May 2014. In addition to the strategy work, the programme included meals and coffees, sports, and sauna baths. The high winds blew frisbees and canoes into the bushes. However, the water in Lake Lohjanjärvi was warm, some 20 degrees according to the skin thermometer.

Professor Maxime Crochemore conferred Doctor Honoris Causa

Professor Maxime Crochemore received the degree of Doctor Honoris Causa of University of Helsinki in a conferment ceremony of the Faculty of Philosophy in 23 May 2014.

Malware Insights: Android Infection Rates and Techniques for Identifying Unknown Malware

In the second research result of the month, we report on the recent results in understanding mobile malware. The research was presented and published in the prestigious World Wide Web conference in April 2014.

Theoretical advances for comparative genomics

The Department has started a new “Research result of the month” series written by Professor and Deputy Head Sasu Tarkoma. In the first result of the month report, we interview Dr. Djamal Belazzougui about his recent accepted scientific article in the prestigious STOC conference, the ACM Symposium on the Theory of Computing.

Software Factory Speeds up Ruby on Rails

Software Factory, the experimental R&D laboratory at the University of Helsinki, successfully continues its open source collaboration with the software industry, open source community, and leading universities like Stanford University and MIT.

After Facebook visit, studying looks like work

University research and education laboratory Software Factory has launched a new kind of Open Source collaboration with the software industry and leading universities like Stanford University and MIT.

How do we keep students engaged until graduation, and how could young people be offered something they cannot already learn at work? These are big enough challenges for more than one university.

Not just the local hero

For the Department of Computer Science, the well-being of international staff has a long history. Everyday communication in English is an essential part of this.

“It makes no sense to be just the local hero. If we want to develop further, we’ll need to follow international research standards” emphasises Juergen Muench. The German Professor has been leading the Software Systems Engineering research group at Helsinki University’s Department of Computer Science since 2011.

Linus Torvalds inspiring department students


Linus Torvalds – alumnus of the department, doctor honoris causa of the University of Helsinki, the best known representative of Finnish computer science internationally – visited the Kumpula campus on 23 October. He answered the questions of students and staff during an informal Q&A session attended by some 300 guests. As the floor was open, and Torvalds emphasized that all questions were welcomed, the queries ranged from extreme to extreme

Exactum rooftop greenhouse experiment grows herbs

A greenhouse has been built on the roof of Exactum in a collaboration by the Department of Computer Science and the Fifth Dimension science project. To begin with, sedum grass is growing on the roof and tomatoes, courgettes and chilli in the greenhouse. The greenhouse is 9.4 square metres large.

The motivation for the computer scientists is the estimation that 2% of the greenhouse gas emissions caused by humans are emitted by equipment using information technology. This is more than e.g. air traffic produces globally. To the scientists, this is reason enough to look into how to decrease the impact of information technology on global warming.

Study, teach and do what is fun

New postgraduates have recently been selected for the HeCSE graduate school that the department shares with Aalto University. One of the rising young researchers is Antti Laaksonen.

 

Antti finished his Master’s degree in spring 2011. Those whose job description includes reading lightweight Scrum theses written for the industry may be heartened by the fact that this student wrote his thesis on a most essential area of computer science, i.e. minimization of regular expressions. Antti chose his topic himself, because it was ‘interesting and suitably challenging.’

 

Congratulations to our good teacher!

The instruction at the Department of Computer Science continues in the limelight; this time in the form of personal recognition, as the student union at the University of Helsinki has awarded the Magister Bonus prize of 2011 to University Lecturer Matti Luukkainen. Matti was interviewed about teaching and studying by Ella Peltonen from TKO-äly immediately after the festivities.

 

 

From professor to CTO

As announced by Nokia on Thursday 22 September 2011, Henry Tirri had been appointed Chief Technology Officer at Nokia and Executive Vice President of the Nokia Leadership Team, effective from that date. According to the bulletin, ‘As Chief Technology Officer, Tirri assumes responsibility for the CTO organization, charged with setting Nokia's technology agenda both now and in the future, and driving core innovation to enable business development opportunities.”

A link to the university

The Linkki centre opened at the Helsinki University Department of Computer Science last Friday. The centre offers all kinds of fun activities like games programming, and an online programming course open to all upper-secondary students, starting at the beginning of next year.

Rocking against cancer

This is the story of Riku Katainen, an eternal student who started with computer science and then got stuck in the bioinformatics Master’s programme. By chance, he grappled a challenge larger than himself.This heavy-metal cliché defected from his original research career in Veli Mäkinen’s SuDS group in Kumpula to Lauri Aaltonen’s research group on cancer genetics in Meilahti.His primary duties involve creating visualisation and analysis software for genetic sequence data, with which to discover gene defects in cancer patients.Though the challenge of creating the program initially brought Riku to the limits of his tolerance, all his hard work bore fruit in the end.Let us hear him tell the story.

International Staff Get-together

On Friday 3rd of June the department and the international well-being group invited the international staff to a picnic and a guided tour on Suomenlinna. With several bags filled with delicious food and drinks we started in the late afternoon towards the island, where we found a sunny spot to enjoy the warm weather, the good company and of course the food: from bread over vegetables and fruits to cheese, we had it all. Besides the about 10 international attendees, also our head of department, Esko Ukkonen, found the time to join us.

Also, check out the new English speaking blog at http://www.cs.helsinki.fi/en/blog.

The story of the little games studio

Ninro gameMika Urtela and Hannu Pajula, graduates of the Department of Computer Science, are realising their piña colada-flavoured dreams in their game-producing company, Soul Aim Studios. This is the beginning of their story. The piña colada part of it has not come true yet, but they're working at it.

Jürgen Münch started as FiDiPro professor

 FiDiPro - the Finland Distinguished Professor Programme - enables distinguished international researchers to work and team up with the 'best of the best' in Finnish academic research. Financed by the Academy of Finland and Tekes, FiDiPro makes it possible to recruit highly merited scientists who are able to commit to long-term cooperation with a Finnish university or research institute.

In March 2011, the Department of Computer Science got its first FiDiPro professor, Jürgen Münch. Let’s interview Jürgen and learn to know him better.
 

Linus Torvalds made honorary alumnus in Kumpula

The Faculty of Science invited Linus Torvalds to be its honorary alumnus in Kumpula. During its alumni event, the faculty also named one of its lecture halls after Linus Torvalds. On the event held on Thursday 17 March, young researchers were the main speakers, and the 350 guests on the science campus gave them their full attention.

Cold Aisle Containment in our server room

On Thursday 10 March 2011, we installed a so-called Cold Aisle Containment in the server room shared by the Department of Computer Science and HIIT. This is a rustic contraption made from transparent PE plastic, air-conditioning tubes, and a great deal of duct tape. It cuts back on the need to cool the server room very efficiently, as the air-tight plastic stops the intake and exhaust air from the servers from mixing.

HIIT study: Servers run well around zero degrees

Lots of energy can be saved by using outside air directly for cooling in data centers in the north. In a study by researchers of Helsinki Institute for Information Technology HIIT and the University of Helsinki, computers functioned correctly over extended periods of time when run in harsh winter temperatures. Commercial, off-the-shelf computers ran well even when the outside temperature was -22C (-8F).

Master's degree studies in computer science popular among international applicants

Master's degree programmes in computer science at the University of Helsinki were very popular among international applicants in spring 2010. This academic year the department of computer science at the University of Helsinki decided to offer two of its Master's degree sub-programmes, namely the programme on Algorithms and Machine Learning and the programme on Networking and Services, completely in English from the beginning of Autumn term 2010.

Esko Ukkonen’s birthday coffee

The head of the department, Esko Ukkonen, celebrated his 60th birthday. The celebration was held in Exactum at the end of January. The party was attended by employees of the Department of Computer Science and invited guests. The programme included both congratulatory speeches and songs, with a quartet from Wiipurilaisen Osakunnan Laulajat (the Viipuri students’ association singers) singing a song for a former active member. Esko was inspector in Kymenlaakson Osakunta (the Kymenlaakso students’ association) for over ten years.

International Master’s programmes a welcome challenge

The Department of Computer Science can face a new era next autumn, as two out of three specialisation programmes at the Master’s level are planning to adopt English as their teaching language. In future, the courses of Algorithms and machine learning as well as Distributed systems are considered to be given in English, while Software systems continues in Finnish.

Official opening of Software Factory on March 4th, 2010 at 13-17

The Software Factory is a strategic investment of the Department of Computer Science at the University of Helsinki into a new infrastructure supporting software engineering research, education and entrepreneurship.

From competition to collaboration

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Katherine Icay, Honours Bachelor of actuarial science at the University of Toronto, decided to make a career turn after a few years in an insurance company. Although fascinated by the theoretical foundations of her study field, she ultimately found the business environment unsuitable for her character.

Department receives university welfare award

The University of Helsinki has granted the Department of Computer Science the university’s safety and welfare award 2009. According to the award diploma, the department staff has collaborated to improve the quality, safety, and welfare of its working environment with determination and good results.

The 5,000-euro award has been granted on the proposition of the safety and welfare commission.

Top research

The research at the department combines theory with interaction with the application fields in a well-balanced whole. Both the department and Basic Research Unit in the Helsinki Institute for Information Technology were awarded the highest grade in the research review carried out in 2005. Algodan (Algorithmic Data Analysis) is a national Finnish Academy centre of excellence 2008-2013.

Innovative teaching

The Finnish Higher Education Council re-elected the department as a national centre of excellence in higher education, this time for the years 2010-2012. The status of centre of excellence is a significant achievement. It was only conferred on 10 units in Finland this time, and the department was one of two units that were selected for their second period.

The Department of Computer Science opens it's doors in the virtual world

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Starting this Friday, you can visit the Department of Computer Science virtually. An adapted facsimile of the Exactum building and the Kumpula Science Library based on their ground plans has been made for the Second Life virtual world. In Second Life, anyone can visit the premises of the Department of Computer Science.

Biomine received funding from Tekes

The Biomine project has been granted EUR 110.000 by Tekes, the Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation. The project, headed by Prof. Hannu Toivonen, is among the very first ones to receive funding for preparation of commercialization, from a new instrument just launched by Tekes.