Computer Laboratory Outreach and Public Engagement Activities
The Computer Laboratory is engaged in a wide range of outreach activities with schools, colleges and communities. Our staff participate in public engagement activities to inspire, inform and foster debate.
Some of the many outreach and public engagement activities
Sam Aaron has run a wide range of Sonic Pi workshops. These have incuded workshops for A-Level students and teachers as part of the Sutton Trust, workshops at St John's School Cambridge and The Spinney Primary School, Think Computer Science at Duxford, the Centre for Computing History and Picademy. Sam has also given a number of Sonic Pi talks including SuperMondays in Newcastle, Bellerbys College as well as a talk to visitors from Kazakhstan. Sam has given interviews about Sonic Pi to both BBC radio and TV. He has also given a large number of live coding performances both in the UK and overseas
- In February 2015 Sam was at Media City in Manchester to give a BBC Learning 'Imaginarium' session. The session introduced his Sonic Pi work to core members of the BBC Learning team. He also gave a talks at FutureEverything, an award-winning innovation lab for digital culture, at Change the world: Exploring the potential of Computing for everyone, to an audience of both Primary and Secondary School teachers. Sam was at Raspberry Pi's third birthday party with his band 'Poly Core', where he gave a live code performance.
- In March 2015 Sam was at Cottenham Village College where he gave a school assembly about creative live coding with Sonic Pi. He visited five local schools to talk about creative coding with Sonic Pi and delivered a BBC live lesson which was streamed to an estimated 66,000 school pupils nation wide.
- In April 2015, Sam was invited to the Arts Council HQ to demonstrate Sonic Pi at their National Music Team Meeting. He also gave a talk about Sonic Pi at the Creative Data Club in Somerset House, London to both artists and technologists. Sonic Pi also appeared as part of the BBC Radio 4 documentary 'Future Speak' and was used by school children from Benton Park Primary to create the music to one of the BBC Ten Pieces. In addition, Sam helped run 'Picademy', the free Raspberry Pi for teachers. He also gave his first solo live coding performance with Sonic Pi at NODE15 (an arts festival in Frankfurt) as part of the concert 'Repetitive Beats & Repetitive Conditionals. At NODE15 he also delivered a Sonic Pi Workshop.
- In May 2015, Sam gave a full assembly to Years 4, 5 and 6 of Histon and Impington Junior Schoo where he talked about programming and demoed Sonic Pi to an excited and engaged audience. Sam was also invited to the Arts Council HQ to explore ways in which they could help fund arts-led engagement activities with Sonic Pi. He delivered two Sonic Pi workshops for the BBC Radio 1 Academy (part of the Roadshow) and performed live coding in their Algorave Session. Sam visited the Benton Park Primary School to spend a day with their Sonic Pi orchestra. He spoke and performed at the Sage Gateshead for the Thinking Digital Conference and ran a Sonic Pi workshop at the Lavant House School in Chichester. At the end of May, Sam helped run Picademy North, Raspberry Pi's free teach training course for primary and secondary teachers to help them deliver the new Computing curriculum. This was the first Picademy in the North of England and was hosted at the National STEM Centre in York.
- In June 2015, Sam helped the Raspberry Pi Foundation run another Picademy teacher training CPD for teachers in the South West of England. He also gave Sonic Pi workshops at the Glasgow Science Centre as part of the BBC Music at the Quay Festival. Sam delivered a series of arts-led Sonic Pi workshops to the finalists of the Sonic Pi competition at: Clifton College Preparatory School, Bristol; Soham Village College, Ely; Kilkhampton Primary School, Cornwall; and Caroline Haslett Primary School, Milton Keynes. He also had a Skype session about Sonic Pi with a class from Gateway Middle School in New York, USA prior to an Algorave style performance. Sam finished the month by headlining the xCoAx Algorave at the Glasgow Art School where he performed live coding with Sonic Pi.
- In July 2015, Sam - as STEMNET Ambassador - opened the STEM Fair in Duxford. He talked about Creative Coding with Sonic Pi to an audience of 200 children. He also gave another arts-led Sonic Pi workshop with Juneau Projects at St Mary Magdalen's Catholic Primar in Preston, followed by a talk at TEDx Newcastle on 'Programming as Performance'. In addition, Sam was heavily involved with the BBC's Make It Digital. His involvment included BBC TV and radio interviews, Sonic Pi masterclasses and a feature on the 'Naked Scientists' radio show. Sam performed with Sonic Pi at an Algorave in Leeds for the International Conference for Live Coding.
- In August 2015, Sam worked with BBC Radio 1 DJ MistaJam for the Ten Pieces project to compose a piece of music with Sonic Pi inspired by Bizet's Carmen. He also delivered a lecture on creative coding to the Computer Laboratory's Cambridge Coding Summer School for Girls, and delivered both a Sonic Pi workshop and a lecture on creative coding to the Sutton Trust Summer School.
- In September 2015, Sam visited three schools in Finland to deliver five talks and lessons on creative coding with Sonic Pi. His visit was covered by the local press in an article titled 'Creativity at its best'. While in Finland, Sam did a live coded performance. He also performed at the Incubate Festival Algorave in the Netherlands. At the end of the month Sam ran an adult Sonic Pi workshop for an audience of professional programmers and gave a live coded performance at the St Louis City Museum in St Louis, USA.
- In October 2015, Sam ran a Sonic Pi workshop, gave a demo of Sonic Pi at the Digital R&D Fund - Music Learning Revolution and delivered a keynote speech at an open source tech conference in Amsterdam. He also gave a Sonic Pi talk at the Ableton Live Look Festival in Berlin.
- In November 2015, Sam gave a Sonic Pi performance in Malmo, Sweden and a Sonic Pi masterclass workshop in Karlsruhe, Germany. He also performed at an Algorave in Karlsruhe, with concert pianist Gregor Schwellenback at the CYNETART Arts Festival in Dresden, Germany and in Minsk, Belarus.
- In December 2015, Sam gave a public Sonic Pi workshop at the Cambridge Junction and spoke about the impact of Sonic Pi as part of a NESTA organised event.
- In January 2016, Sam gave a keynote speech at the Bett Show Arena on Sonic Pi's role and impact on education.
- In February 2016, Sam ran Sonic Pi CPD workshops in Brighton for music teachers, gave a keynote speech to a consortium of museum managers, spoke at TEDx Manchester and was on BBC Cambridge News.
- In March 2016, Sam was interviewed by the BBC and by Cambridge TV. He performed for the Rasberry Pi birthday party, gave a Sonic Pi workshop in Aarhus, gave an assemly and two workshops at Daubeney Academy, Bedford, and gave a talk at Thinking Digital London.
- Since June 2015, Sam has written a monthly Sonic Pi article for the Mag Pi magazine.
- In April 2016, Sam delivered a number of children's workshops, judged the national Sonic Pi in Space competition in association with Raspberry Pi's Astro Pi initiative, spoke at the North East Regional and Cambridge CAS Hub meetings, and performed with Sonic Pi at an Algorave in Leeds.
- In May 2016, Sam delivered a workshop to educators at Lyric Hammersmith, performed live coding with Sonic Pi in London and Belgium, gave Gan open-air presentation on Live Coding in Education in London, performed at the International Music Festival 'Moog Fest' in the USA, and presented and performed at the Binary Festival in Liverpool.
- In June 2016, Sam performed in Estonia, presented at TEDxLiverpool and demonstrated Sonic Pi and the Computer Laboratory Open Days.
- Over July, August and September 2016, Sam performed in London, was interviewed by internet broadcaster TWiT TV and Performed a live coding duet with an organ scholar.
- In October 2016, Sam gave numerous workshops at Thomas's Clapham school. He also gave a Sonic Pi workshop for Belgium broadcaster VRT and a presentation at Thinking Digital in Manchester 13th. Sam also performed in St. Petersburg.
- In November 2016, Sam gave two workshops to German schoolchildren in Berlin, hosted by Microsoft, as part of the Code Your Life initiative. He also gave a talk and performance to an audience of artists and makers in Hannover as part of the Basis Zwei programme.
Ross Anderson's research is regularly featured in both the print and broadcast media. This includes coverage of the report for the Nuffield Bioethics Council. In September 2015, Ross gave the keynote at Sweden's annual conference for public sector IT. In November 2015, Ross gave evidence to the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee on the draft Investigatory Powers Bill. He also gave written evidence. In January 2015, Ross organised Scrambling for Safety" which brought together parliamentarians, lawyers, industry, NGOs and academics to discuss the draft Investigatory Powers Bill during the Bill's consultation period. This is the tenth of a series of occasional events Ross has run since 1998 as parliament has been considering various laws and regulations on electronic surveillance. Previous efforts had a significant influence on our current regulatory environment.
Alastair Beresford and Diana Vasile spoke to an audience of over 100 women at Robinson College's Women in Science Festival. In March 2016, Alastair Beresford, Gareth Bailey and Andrew Rice hosted the British Informatics Olympiad at the Computer Laboratory. In October 2016, Alastair ran a regional centre for the annual UK and Ireland ACM Programming Contest. Over 20 teams from Oxford and Cambridge participated.
Alan Blackwell worked with Cambridge Junction to run the Summer School for 10-14 year olds, with each being given the opportunity to work towards a Bronze Arts Award qualification. Alan has also coached a group of students at Chesterton Community College for a live coding performance at Chesterton's Got Talent. He has helped Cambridge Citizen's Advice bureau to review their web kiosk service for rural Cambridgeshire and has incubated a new Cambridge experimental arts agency, Collusion, which aims to unite Cambridge's art and technology sectors. Alan and Sam Aaron have performed as 'The Humming Wires' at the Birmingham Algorave. Alan has also recently given a talk in a Royal Academy schools public programme spring symposium.
Alex Bradbury demonstrated Raspberry Pi related projects on the Worshipful Company of Information Technologists' stand at the Livery Showcase, organised by the Livery Schools Link, on March 4th 2015. The Livery Schools Link aims to demonstrate a range of potential career opportunities to Year 9 schoolchildren.
Alex Bradbury volunteered with the Raspberry Pi Foundation team at Camp Bestival on July 28th-31st 2016, to give children an introduction to programming with Raspberry Pi and the Sense Hat.
Alex Chadwick has visited his old secondary school in Lincoln to speak at an access to Oxbridge conference.
Max Conway has taken two assemblies at the King's Hedges Educational Foundation.
Jon Crowcroft is the local host for Raspberry Pi's 3rd birthday party at the end of February 2015. He is also Chair for a discussion event ('Can our online lives be private') at the Royal Society in February 2015. In October 2016 Jon Crowcroft, Zafar Gilani, Andrew Moore and Diana Popescu participated in a panel discussion at the Cambridge Festival of Ideas.
Data from the Device Analyzer project (work done by Alastair Beresford, Andrew Rice, Daniel Thomas and Daniel Wagner) has been used for the new Information Age exhibition at London's Science Museum. A plaque on the wall acknowledges the project.
Matthew Daggitt gave a talk at Magdalen College School in Oxford titled 'How to teach computers to play games using 1 billion random numbers'. In May 2016 Matthew gave a talk about computer science to potential applicants at the Jesus College Open Day.
In August 2016, Matthew Danish gave a talk at the Fortran Modernisation Workshop at Culham Centre for Fusion Energy. He gave the same presentation in September at Queen Mary University of London.
Anuj Dawar writes a blog for CUP Education Digital. In January 2016, Anuj recorded a radio podcast for a programme called SynTalk. In November 2016, Anuj led a session for the Berkeley Math Circle, a group for high school students interested in mathematics in the San Francisco Bay area.
Ramsey Faragher has made numerous appearances on BBC Radio. He is a science advisor for two production companies that work with the BBC and Channel 4 and has organised conferences and public seminars for the Royal Institute of Navigation.
Richard Gibbens is on the STIMULUS steering committee.
In September 2016 Hatice Gunes gave an interview on the BBC World Service. Hatice (with RA Oya Celiktutan) gave a demonstration, with a humanoid robot at 'The Being There Showcase: Humans and Robots in Public Space' at the Watershed. Hatice and Oya also gave talks at the same event. In November 2016 Hatice took part in Wellcome Collections' Friday Late Spectacular - Body Language Event, London.
Andy Harter has spoken at a wide range of events (including the Institute of Directors and Cambridge Business Week) and been interviewed by the print media. In November 2015 he spoke at Queen Elizabeth Grammar School, Wakefield. In March 2016, Andy spoke at a Founders4Schools event for Y10 at the Stephen Perse Foundation. In April, Andy participated in the IET's Junior Board where a group of school children were invited join its new Junior Board in a groundbreaking move to tackle the engineering shortage by encouraging input and ideas from the potential engineers of tomorrow. Andy was also an organising participant of Cambridge Network School for Scale-ups and RAEng Innovators Network meeting.
David Hartley gave a presentation at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, California about the BCS Computer Conservation Society and The National Museum of Computing at Bletchley Park.
Jonathan Hayman gave a talk on Computer Science at Emmanuel College's residential programme for year 11 students from Sheffield.
Tony Hoare has given lessons on Quicksort at Secondary Schools, most recently at Finham Park in Coventry. Tony has recently given two lectures to the general public in Cambridge.
Isak Herman was interviewed by BBC Look East about Mephistophone, a project exploring the interactions between people and visualized sound.
Andy Hopper has given around 60 public lectures worldwide on innovation and the role of computing in sustainability.
Mateja Jamnik was featured in CAM magazine. She has also run a programming club for local children aged 7-11. Mateja was interviewed with the Naked Scientists for Radio 5 Live's programme on 'The Science of Sex and Love', broadcast (appropriately) on February 14 2015. She was also interviewed by ComputerWeekly.com on the topic of automated medical diagnosis systems. In September 2015, Mateja gave a tech talk and sat on a panel discussing 'Could machines do politics better than humans?' organised by TechCentral at the Labour Party Conference in Brighton. In December 2015, Mateja gave a talk and was part of the panel Forum for European Philosophy public talk and panel discussion at the London School of Economics, on "Will Machines Rule the World?" She also wrote an article for the BBC Focus Science and Technology magazine: Jamnik, M. (2015). The end of work? BBC Focus Magazine, December Issue 288:56.
In March 2016, Mateja took part in two public talks and panel discussions at the Cambridge Science Festival: 'Will artificial intelligence be superior to the human brain?' and '#ILookLikeAScientist'. She also wrote an article, 'Our work in the future', for Cambridge News.
Mateja Jamnik, Markus Kuhn and Piete Brooks provided 14 refurbished second-hand PCs from the department to Milton Road Primary School in April 2015, to help set up a new computer room for delivering the year-6 curriculum in Computer Science.
Martin Kleppmann submitted evidence to the evidence to the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee on the draft Investigatory Powers Bill.
Markus Kuhn regularly interacts with the media on computer-science and computer-security topics. His articles at theconversation.com were read by over 100,000 people. The Dutch government has appointed Markus to the expert group that advises the Ministry of the Interior and Kingdom Relations on electronic voting and counting in the polling station. He was interviewed by the BBC for an article on safety hazards posed by integer overflows.
Jack Lang has given several lectures about Raspberry Pi, most recently in Munich and Cyprus. In June 2016, Markus, along with Piete Brooks and Mateja Jamnik, helped Milton Road Primary School with the installation of 14 computers.
In October 2016 Ian Lewis worked with local authorities on the smartCAMBRIDGE project board to improve the digital infrastructure in the region.
Pietro Lio gave a talk at the University of Cambridge's Alumni Festival on Saturday 26 September 2015.
Recent research by Neal Lathia and Cecilia Mascolo (in collaboration with the Department of Public Health & Primary Care) has been featured in the Medical Research Council's Network Magazine and podcast.
Cecilia Mascolo has run a code club at Morley Memorial Primary School. Ceclia team's work is regularly featured in the print media In May 2015 Cecilia gave a talk about Computer Science to potential applications at Jesus College, Cambridge. In October 2015 she gave a talk at St Mary's School, Cambridge and at Somervile College, Oxford (as part of their Ada Lovelace Bicentenary celebrations. In January 2015, Cecilia was a judge at Hack Cambridge. In May 2016, Cecilia gave a talk about computer science to potential applicants at the Jesus College Open Day.
Riaz Moola runs a trust that conducts free Computer Science and IT training in South Africa. It administers the largest unique IT and Comp Sci only course in the country. 2500 full time university students in SA, primarily those from disadvantaged backgrounds and without their own internet (or with poor access to computers), have taken beginner courses in Java, Python and C++. The project is funded by the Python Software Foundation.
Robert Mullins published an article on the Raspberry Pi at The Conversation, a news organization where scientists write for the general public. It was read by over 15000 people. In January 2016, Rob was a judge at Hack Cambridge. He also gave a Raspberry Pi/lowRISC talk to approx 50 undergraduates (part of the De Leidsche Flesch, a Dutch Science Society). In March 2016 Rob gave a talk entitled "From light bulbs to microprocessors" at Eton College and to groups of school children in Cambridge.
Alan Mycroft participated in Cambridge Coding Academy iDEA 2015 hosted at the Computer Laboratory. The event gave over 60 school students the opportunity to start coding using the interactive Cambridge Coding online platform and receive an iDEA badge. iDEA is the Inspiring Digital Enterprise Award founded by The Duke of York to support young people in developing digital skills. The Computer Laboratory was delighted to welcome HRH The Duke of York to the Lab to celebrate the launch of the iDEA badge. In March 2016, Alan gave an invited lecture at the 'Continuing Professional Development for Teachers' computing event at the Prince's Teaching Institute.
The OCaml team hosted its eleventh Compiler Hacking Session at Pembroke College, Cambridge. Both beginners and seasoned programmers attended. The team will be hosting these sessions every couple of months, and all are welcome to attend. In January 2016, the OCaml team arranged and spoke at a tech talk at Facebook, California. In November 2016, the OCaml team hosted the fifteenth OCaml compiler hack evening.
Helen Oliver is a Trustee of the Space Science & Engineering Foundation which organizes the UK Space Settlement Design Competition, a design challenge open to secondary and sixth form students in Years 10-13. A separate series of Micro-Competitions replicate the experience for younger students in years 7-9. Teams are given a request for proposals, set anywhere from 20 to 70 years into the future, to design a space settlement on, or in orbit around, a given planet or moon in the Solar System. Competition is intense in this very realistic industry simulation as each team strives to be the one that will win the contract (and go on to the international finals at NASA). During summer 2015, Helen helped to bring the UK Space Design Competition to the Imperial Global Summer Schools. In March 2016, Helen was a judge and technical expert in human engineering at the 2016 national final of the UK Space Design Competition at Imperial College, London.
Helen Oliver has been a Judge and Technical Expert at the National Finals, held at Imperial College London, since 2011, and has also judged the international finals at NASA Johnson and NASA Kennedy. Alumni of the competition have gone on to pursue degrees in STEM and many cite the competition as a major influence in their lives, even describing it as one of the best things they have ever done.
Dominic Orchard gave a Cambridge Coding Academy 'coffee shop' Tech Talk.
In summer 2016, Larry Paulson participated in Clare Colege Open Days.
Andrew Rice hosted the British Olympiad in Informatics final 2014. In March 2016, Andrew was one of a number of staff who hosted the Raspberry Pi Big Birthday Bash at the Computer Laboratory. Over 1500 people attended the event.
Andrew and Amir Chaudhry organised and hosted an 'appathon' as part of Silicon Valley Comes to the UK.
Laura Rimell is helping her local primary school, the Bellbird Primary School, with advice on the computing curriculum. She has already given a lesson to pupils and plans to give more in 2015.
Peter Robinson has run a number of schools workshops at Gonville & Caius College. He also participates in College Open Days. Peter's YouTube video, The Emotional Computer has resulted in regular TV and radio appearances and his work has been reported on in the print media. Peter was interviewed by 42evolution on why he is interested in computing with emotions. In February 2016, Peter gave a talk for TEDx Cambridge University. In June 2016 Peter gave a talk, 'Some Cambridge contributions to digital computing', to the Friends of St Giles. He also appeared on Spanish national television on a progamme about the emotional robot and participated in the University and Department Open Days. In July 2016, Peter gave a lecture at The University of Cambridge International Summer Programmes. In Septembe 2016 Peter gave a number of talks: "Is there anything constant in our ever-changing world?" at Parks at One on the Science Park; "Ethical implications of emotionally responsible machines" for the Faraday Institute course on Robots, Reality and Religion; "Computers that know how you feel" for New Scientist Live at the ExCeL Centre. In October 2016, Peter contributed to the film on "Pain in the machine" which shown at the Cambridge Festival of Ideas.
Bogdan Roman spoke at the Oxbridge Conferences in Birmingham and Swansea. He also hosted a group of school students from Kew House School. The visit which took place at Homerton College included a talk and project demonstrations.
In July 2016, Graham Rymer wrote an article on cyber security war games for British Mensa magazine.
Advait Sarkar was interviewed by Cambridge TV.
In March 2016 Philip Saville and Lucas Sonnabend spoke at the Oxbridge Conferences.
Peter Sewell gave an invited talk titled 'Why are computers so @#!*, and what can we do about it?'at the 31st Chaos Communication Congress (31C3), to an audience of around 2000 people, on December 30 2014. In December 2016, Peter gave a keynote at Multicore Day 2016, part of SICS Software Week 2016 - an industry outreach event in Sweden.
In March 2016, Laurent Simon gave several interviews about Factory Reset on Android and the Apple vs FBI case (unlocking iPhone).
In November 2016, Beth Singler was interviewed by Cambridge TV about The Cambridge Ideas film about Pain in the Machine.
In November 2016, Quentin Stafford-Fraser was interiewed on Newstalk 106-108fm: Ireland's National Independent Talk Radio Broadcaster.
Frank Stajano gave an interactive encryption masterclass to an audience of activists and social scientists at the Amnesty/CGHR Encryption and Human Rights workshop. He has also been invited by the Italian Embassy in London to give presentations on his research: in November 2015 he will be speaking at The Rotary Club The City & Shoreditch and The Italian Institute of Culture.
Simone Teufel spoke at the Oxbridge Conference in Surrey.
Daniel R Thomas supervised a work experience student from Comberton College to work on Physics simulations using Anvil. Daniel also gave a lecture at the Joan Clarke summer school and a talk at the 2015 Festival of Ideas.
Sophie van der Zee has been interviewed by the King's Parade magazine about her motion-based lie detection research, and by the BBC in response to a story on the rise in indentity thefts. She also spoke at the HowTheLightGetsIn 2015 Philosophy and Music Festival at Hay. Sophie was interviewewd on BBC TV's Crimewatch Roadhow and by Dutch national news. The TV interview featured a demonstration of the Lab's automated lie detection research.
Sophie van der Zee and Mateja Jamnik have organised a series of two-minute madness presentations at the Museum of Computing History. Presentations were given by: Annalisa Occhipinti, Heidi Howard, Sophie van der Zee, Ekaterina Kochmar, Tamara Polajnar, Mateja Jamnik and Noa Zilberman.
In June 2016, Petar Velickovic gave talk on deep reinforcement learning to a group of delegates from the Kazakh-British Technical University (KBTU), as part of a "Deep learning tutorial day". In July 2016, Petar gave a talk to students at the Cambridge Coding Academy Summer School.In August, Petar gave a tech talk on AlphaGo at THECUBE in London. He also published a tutorial on deep learning essentials.
Amy Weatherup will be at the Cambridge Science Festival running an event called What would you use THAT for?
Every year Ian Wassell goes to St Peter's Collegiate School in Wolverhampton to help the students with their electronics projects which are part of the Electronics AS and A levels.
Volunteers from Women@CL ran a Sonic Pi/Raspberry Pi workshop at St John's College. It was attended by 55 Year 10 girls. In March 2016, women@CL organised and hosted the 3rd Oxbridge Women in Computer Science Conference.