Associate Professor in the School of Computing (SoC) and Faculty of Engineering (FoE) and
University Scholars Programme (USP)
at the National University of Singapore (NUS)
SoC (Department of Computer Science): COM2, 3-51, 13 Computing Dr, Singapore 117417
FoE (Innovation & Design Centric Programme): E2A 03, 5 Engineering Drive 2, Singapore 117579
USP: Joint Appointee Room (Level 2), 18 College Avenue East, Singapore 118593
(make an apointment via email or WhatsApp/SMS)
Email: replace "http://www." in this URL by "henz@" and you're really close
In Academic Year 2011/2012, I embarked on experiential education, and
never looked back: At the USP,
I acquired a second-hand motorcycle for experiential student projects;
my sailing boat Bo Bo Cha Cha served as floating classroom for the
first run of a course "The Physics of Sailing"; I started
teaching the experiential programming freshmen module CS1101S in SoC; and I became the supervisor of Rahul
Singhal's PhD research project.
went on to invent automated reasoning techniques for generating questions,
earning him a PhD in 2017 and leading him—with SoC alumnus Shubham
the AI startup Cerebry
that focuses on problem-based learning,
where I serve as advisor. With my
students, I developed the
Source Academy, an experiential learning environment for programming
that enrolled 120 computer science freshmen in Semester 1
2017/18. More than a dozen runs of
Physics of Sailing"
from 2012 to 2017 taught me that sailing vessels
provide a uniquely conducive environment for multi-disciplinary
learning, which led to the formation of
seafaring voyages for experiential learning by the end of 2017. And the
motorcycle? Dubbed FWi,
it became the first of a series of experiential
learning platforms on the road, at sea and in the air, under the
design and prototyping studio
FrogWorks in the
Innovation & Design
Centric Programme (iDCP), where I serve in a joint appointment since
Today, I'm more convinced than ever of the unique opportunities of experiential learning in university education. I see every encounter with students as a mutual learning experience and don't seem to get tired of creating experiential learning opportunities for my students in SoC, iDCP and USP.
I obtained a Dr.rer.nat. in Computer Science at Saarland University in 1997 and a Masters in Computer Science at Stony Brook University in 1993.
I joined NUS after my doctorate, in 1997. Computer Science was
at the time part of the Department of Information Systems and
Computer Science in the Faculty of Science. SoC
was formed in 1998. I joined the USP
when it started its residential
programme in 2011, and the
in July 2016.
Before my doctorate,
I worked as research scientist at
Saarland University and
Research Center for Artificial Intelligence.
I worked as a nursing assistant in the
from 1987 to 1989, before the
asylum was abolished in 1998.
My research has spanned
combinatorial optimisation, FPGAs, programming
tools and languages, and most recently education and electric vehicles,
with publications in IJCAI,
programming, programming languages and
logic, and supervise design projects.
Together with Dr Jörg Weigl and Brian Teo, I initiated the
prototyping studio at the iDCP in FoE at NUS.
So far, more than 30 FrogWorks students have developed
green vehicles that operate on land, at sea and in the air.
Together with Alan Sevugan, I
founded the software company FriarTuck,
schedule countless employees
and surgeries every day, in Singapore and the region. My former students
Rahul Singhal and Shubham Goyal
have spun off the AI startup Cerebry
in 2016 where I serve as advisor.
I love, swim, sail, ride, and do yoga and acting.
I'm interested in tools and methods for teaching. With Aquinas Hobor,
I have explored the use of
proof assistants in
teaching formal methods;
with Koh, Duran-Novoa and Weigl, I've been involved
in a study on change
propagation in engineering projects; with Danner and Teo,
I've explored employing engineering challenges for experiential
learning; and with Rahul Singhal and Shubham Goyal, I have invented
automated reasoning techniques for question generation
and the sciences.
- Electric vehicles: I am guiding students in the design of novel
electric vehicles on
land, at sea and
in the air
(twice) in the
design and prototyping studio
- Combinatorial optimization:
I've solved combinatorial search and optimization problems
as a combinatorial search problem.
- Field-programmable Gate Arrays: With Roland Yap, Edgar Tan, and
Stella Wang, I investigated
implementations of local search algorithms.
- Programming tools and languages:
I was part of the group around Gert
Smolka that developed the
in the 1990s, and my doctoral dissertation, published with
Kluwer as a monograph covered
object-oriented aspects of the
language. We also explored the use of Oz for multi-agent
systems. With my Master students Kevin Ng and Jeff Choi,
components for constraint-based search.
- Term rewriting: In a previous life, I worked on term rewriting modulo AC1.
In SoC, I currently teach
CS1101S is a rigorous, thorough, gamified and
immersive introduction to programming and programming methodology. The module
follows the didactic strategy
of the classic textbook Structure and Interpretation of Computer
I am translating
- I've taught
CS4215 Programming Language Implementation
CS3234 Logic and Formal Systems
for many years.
- In the USP, I have taught
The Importance of Being Formal.
- I love getting students involved in
engineering projects and have
joined the iDCP in FoE at NUS
to facilitate project-based experiential learning.
My current iDCP projects engage students in the design and prototyping
FrogWorks, where these machines are being built:
In the USP, I facilitate a biannual informal course
of Sailing. A theory session with a physicist establishes the principles
and a practical session on
Bo Bo Cha Cha verifies them
(so far, we haven't managed to falsify any).
I facilitate outdoor education and experiential learning.
I have conducted student sailing voyages
in Singapore in
and to Bintan, Indonesia, in
In 2016, I organized a
paragliding course in Thailand,
as part of the engineering project The Delta.
With my Residential Assistants, I also facilitate a biannual
sailing course for
In late 2016, I initiated
NUS Seafarers, a framework
for experiential seafaring voyages. The NUS Seafarers have conducted seven
voyages in 2017, each between 8 and 14 days long and with 11-13 students on
board, reaching remote places such as the Anambas
Islands, Pulau Lingga and Krakatoa.
My wife Kelly Reedy is
an artist and
Our son Jakob lives currently in Johannesburg, South Africa, and our daughter Luisa
is studying in Vancouver, Canada.
I like swimming in the University Sports Complex
but love swimming in the ocean, with three participations
in the Kapas-Marang International Swimmathon (6.5 km open sea).
I love sailing my masthead sloop
Bo Bo Cha Cha, a Maxi 77 pocket cruiser built in Singapore in 1980. Here is what it's like on board when there's a fresh breeze, and this is serious sailing reaching Horsburgh Lighthouse in the South China sea during the North-East Monsoon. Bo Bo Cha Cha is Singapore's only
carbon-neutral motorized vessel.
This is my first real bike, a Yamaha XJR400, just before it was
scrapped. I currently ride a Honda ST1300, and had a BMW R1100R in between.
Yoga: Would like to get back to the practice, and teaching students, too, as
seen here, in a Shadow Yoga session.
Acting: I've been on stage in a dozen productions by
The Stage Club (Singapore's oldest theatre
company) since 2010, and
played Mr Scoblowski in Daisy Pulls it Off, Francis Nurse in
a director in Calendar Girls
and various roles in The Taming of the Shrew,
Bram Stoker's Dracula
(see picture) and the Christmas Pantos Aladdin, Little Red Riding Hood, Sleeping Beauty and Jack and the