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Wiley Partners with NUS Advanced Computing for Executives to Launch Global Certification Program Aimed to Close Technology Skills

09 March 2021 Teaching , News Media

 

In this second of the AskST series on university education, The Straits Times looks at how to pick the right institution and course of study.

John Wiley & Sons Singapore Pte Ltd., a global leader in research and education, and the National University of Singapore’s Advanced Computing for Executives (ACE) today announced a partnership to jointly train and certify executives in a range of in-demand technology skills. This partnership will address the need to continually upskill, especially as the world contends with the economic impact of COVID-19.

This series of professional short courses will enable learners to meet the skills demand for long-term career success. The courses, which can be completed in two to three days and will be both instructor-led and self-paced, will be available to all learners globally beginning in April. Courses include:

Driving Innovation through Design Thinking
Story Telling with Data
Developing Winning User Experiences with UI-UX
Analytics for Finance
Analytics for Talent Management

“NUS’ Advanced Computing for Executives (ACE) is pleased to collaborate with Wiley to launch the Global Certification Program. We believe that the knowledge and expertise of ACE, combined with Wiley’s global reach and excellent record of delivering quality products, will help deliver much needed training opportunities to IT professionals around the world. It is also in line with ACE’s vision of helping business leaders harness emerging technology to boost business competitiveness,” said Professor Alex Siow, Director of Advanced Computing for Executives (ACE), School of Computing, National University of Singapore.

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Archipelago — making sure no student is an island

05 March 2021 CSFEATURES Department of Computer Science , Faculty , Teaching , Feature

Like everyone else, Yuen Jien Soo found himself struggling to adapt when Covid-19 first hit last year. Soo, who teaches operating systems, computer organisation, and software product engineering at NUS Computing, initially found it strange “speaking to himself” without anyone to look at while delivering a lecture. But something else troubled the associate professor even more: students were complaining that online lectures “weren’t engaging” and “didn’t feel like a regular classroom.”

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Find your 'element' to pick the right course and university

22 February 2021 CSMEDIA Department of Computer Science , Faculty , Student , News Media

In this second of the AskST series on university education, The Straits Times looks at how to pick the right institution and course of study.

Q: It is good to have a choice of six local universities, but what should my son look out for in making the choice, other than ensuring that the university offers the computing degree course he wants to pursue?

A: Computing is a good course to study, given the rise of Industry 4.0, which refers to a new phase in industrial revolution that focuses heavily on interconnectivity, automation, machine learning and real-time data.

Several public universities offer degree courses in computing. So, how do you pick the right one?

First, look at whether your son is able to meet the cut-off score for computing, as it is highly competitive. 

For the National University of Singapore (NUS), which has Singapore's largest intake of students for computing - with more than 1,400 last year - students generally need four As to enter the course.

Having said that, many students, including those at NUS, are admitted into computing despite falling short of the cut-off score.

Often, they demonstrate their aptitude for and interest in the field through other means, be it in the interview process or through some software they may have created.

NUS provost Ho Teck Hua feels it is important to recognise that developments in computing are rapid. Therefore, his advice is to pick a university where teaching and research in the field are at the cutting edge.

How do you ascertain that? One way is to look at the international rankings according to disciplines.

NUS, for example, was ranked ninth in the world last year for computer science and information systems by Times Higher Education and Quacquarelli Symonds (QS), where significant weightage is given to research output.

Your son should study the job and salary prospects for computing graduates in the yearly survey results, which were released on Friday last week. 

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Disney+ won't allow VPN users to access overseas version of video streaming service

16 February 2021 CSMEDIA Department of Computer Science , Faculty , News Media , Systems & Networking , Security

It may not be possible for some Singaporeans to get their fix of The Mandalorian Star Wars TV series by using technological tricks to watch an overseas version of Disney+, such as before the video streaming service launches here officially on Feb 23. The Walt Disney Company told The Straits Times that in line with the Disney+ subscriber agreement, it does not allow users to access Disney+ using a virtual private network - to bypass geographical restrictions - in a territory where the service is not yet live.

 Associate Professor Liang Zhenkai from the National University of Singapore (NUS) said that when a person uses a VPN, Disney cannot directly detect the overseas clients at the network level.

"These undetected IP addresses used by the VPN service are not easily blocked. If Disney gradually recognises the VPN provider's network, they can block it later," said Prof Liang, who is from NUS' Department of Computer Science.

This could happen if, for example, Disney detects a large number of unrelated users sending in requests from the same IP address, which suggests a delegation service like a VPN service is being used. But Prof Liang said that if the Disney+ app is used for streaming, there are other methods to recognise whether the client is from a different country, such as using the app store's region or global positioning system information of a mobile device.

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More than Assignments: Developing Software for the Real World

15 February 2021 CSFEATURES Department of Computer Science , Faculty , Teaching , Feature , Programming Languages & Software Engineering

In 2011, Damith Rajapakse was teaching a few modules at NUS Computing when he ran into a problem. Part of his modules comprised an aspect of project work, and he needed a way to evaluate each student’s contribution to their respective projects, so that he could assign grades in a fair manner. But the tools available to Rajapakse weren’t very helpful.

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Research by NUS Computing faculty and students featured in AAAI 2021

05 February 2021 CSNEWS Department of Computer Science , Faculty , Artificial Intelligence

5 February 2021 – Twenty-two research papers by NUS Computing faculty and students are featured in the 35th AAAI Conference on Artificial Intelligence, which is currently ongoing and will end on February 9.

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Greening The Net

20 January 2021 CSMEDIA Department of Computer Science , Faculty , News Media , Systems & Networking

Life has gotten more digital than ever before. And the plusses of that for the environment has been clear…as in clear skies and clean air. What is not so clear however is this: when it comes to greenhouse gases, the Internet is responsible for 2% of global emissions. If the Internet were a country, it would be ranked as the sixth largest polluter in the world.

But the Internet is here to stay, so what can be done to make it greener? From individuals not hitting Reply All on emails or turning off Auto Play for videos, to data centres running on green energy and search engines giving back to the environment, host Prerna Pant looks at all the various ways we are Greening The ‘Net.

Pant also interviews Assistant Professor Trevor E. Carlson on how Internet usage is contributing to our carbon footprint.

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Sung Kah Kay Assistant Professor Kuldeep Meel makes IEEE’s ‘AI’s 10 to Watch’ list

12 January 2021 CSNEWS Department of Computer Science , Faculty , Artificial Intelligence

12 January 2021 – Dr Kuldeep S. Meel has been named one of ‘AI’s 10 to Watch’ by the IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) Intelligent Systems journal.

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NUS Computing students dominate at ICPC Jakarta Regional Contest

07 January 2021 CSNEWS Department of Computer Science , Student

7 January 2021 – NUS Computing teams excelled at the recent International Collegiate Programming Contest (ICPC) Jakarta regional contest, held online from 18 to 20 December 2020. NUS teams swept the top three positions at the competition, with Teams MLG, (((i^c)>>2)/p)|c), and 3Sophonomore winning first, second, and third place respectively.

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Three Singapore smart home hub, Wi-Fi router brands carry new cyber-security label

30 December 2020 Department of Information Systems & Analytics , Faculty , News Media , Security

 

Smart home hubs and Wi-Fi routers from local brands Aztech, HomeAuto Solutions and Prolink are the first technology products to carry cyber-security labels similar to the energy-efficiency labels on home appliances.

Sold on e-commerce platforms such as Lazada and Shopee, four products from these three brands have been given the Level 1 rating under the Cybersecurity Labelling Scheme (CLS), which is aimed at helping buyers gauge how exposed they are to risks.

The Level 1 rating means the device maker has ensured that there is a unique default password and that software updates are automatically pushed to the products. The CLS - a voluntary tiered rating system administered by the Cyber Security Agency of Singapore (CSA) - was launched in October.

Checks by The Straits Times found that the prices of the four CLS-labelled products are comparable to those of non-labelled counterparts. For instance, a single unit of the labelled Wi-Fi router from Prolink costs $150, while one unlabelled Wi-Fi router from TP-Link's Deco X20 line is priced at $149.

Experts have, however, said that labelled products could cost markedly more - such as when, for a higher rating, a manufacturer sends its product to an external laboratory to test its resistance to cyber attacks. This is because complying with the requirements for higher ratings involve "significant effort and resources", said Associate Professor Goh Khim Yong from the National University of Singapore's School of Computing.

While some consumers said they would be willing to pay a small premium for a more secure product, most indicated that they would prioritise other factors such as user-friendliness and reliability over cyber security.

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NUS scientists develop computational tool to help design safer devices

29 December 2020 CSMEDIA Department of Computer Science , Faculty , News Media , Security

As the world embraces the Internet of Things (IoT), more and more everyday appliances are being connected to the Internet so that people can monitor those appliances remotely. While this makes our lives more convenient, there is a looming threat of cybercriminals using these devices to gain access to sensitive data.

Now, scientists from the National University of Singapore’s School of Computing (NUS Computing) have made it easier to guard against that. They have developed a software tool that can simulate hacker attacks, and which provide an automated way to protect the design. This helps designers create more secure computer chips.

The software works by simulating a physical hardware attack known as laser fault injection. To accomplish this on a real device, the cyber-criminal would first partially disassemble the hardware to gain access to its silicon chip without interrupting its operation. Then, they use a laser to generate a processor error. This throws the gates open, allowing them to extract data and security information.

Previously, it was expensive to protect chips against this kind of attack because they had to be tested manually. If the chip fails the test, the design must start over. The NUS software, called the Laser fault Attack Benchmark Suite or LABS, can now simulate attacks in a wide variety of situations and demonstrate how the chip reacts. All this can be done without having to manufacture a single chip. This helps chip designers figure out how to repel the attack, and even trick the attackers into thinking they have succeeded. With this software, chip manufacturers will be able to simulate any device, and results are available within minutes.

The NUS scientists, led by Assistant Professor Trevor E. Carlson and Professor Peh Li Shiuan, have made the software open source so researchers and the chip design community can use it, or help make it better.

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NUS Presidential Young Professor of Computer Science Reza Shokri joins Private AI Collaborative Research Institute

29 December 2020 Department of Computer Science , Faculty , Artificial Intelligence

29 December 2020 – Assistant Professor Reza Shokri has been selected by the newly launched Private AI Collaborative Research Institute to conduct research in heterogeneous decentralised learning.

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Protecting IoT devices from attack

28 December 2020 CSFEATURES Department of Computer Science , Faculty , Feature , Systems & Networking , Security

In 2017, a casino in North America reported that their database had been hacked. The news in itself wasn’t surprising — more than 5,000 such breaches took place last year — but the cause of the leak was: a fish tank.

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Just in time for Christmas: How Gratify plans to make gift-giving more efficient and sustainable

24 December 2020 Department of Information Systems & Analytics , Student , News Media , Social Media & Digital Business , Digital Transformation, Platforms & Innovation

 

Half of Singapore customers admitted that they are not happy with the gifts they have received.

“To prevent such loss in economic value and environmental damage, cash is theoretically the most efficient solution. However, giving cash as a gift is crude, and could be seen as derogatory. Hence, many people have resorted to getting gift cards, which is a convenient way to gift while reducing economic waste. This explains the rapid growth trends in the gift card market,” Gratify CEO & CFO Dao Xiong Teng explains in an email to e27.

But even gift cards are not perfect.

“If we think about it, most people would remove the price tags and the receipts from their gifts before giving them out, so that the dollar value is not so glaringly in-your-face. Yet, ironically, for gift cards, the dollar value is practically the gift itself,” Teng continues. “What we need is a gift that is as flexible as a gift card, but without having the gift value blatantly apparent and crude.”

This is the opportunity that local startup Gratify aims to seize. 

Launched earlier this month, the startup builds a platform to enable customers to purchase and send gifts to their loved ones. But what sets them apart from other e-commerce platform is that they provide options for gift recipients to receive, swap the gifts, or donate it to a charity.

The platform works by enabling the customer to choose from a wide array of products on their platform. Once they have checked out and given the recipient’s details, the recipient will be notified and be given the options.

If they choose to not accept the gift, for whatever reason, they can opt to swap it with a more suitable one as available on the Gratify platform. They can also choose to donate the value of the gift to a charity organisation that the startup is partnering with.

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Generation Grit: NUS undergrad with cerebral palsy plans on helping others like him

24 December 2020 CSMEDIA Department of Computer Science , Student , News Media , Feature

The road to university can be difficult for any student, but Mr Ng Jun Kang had to overcome daily challenges that others gave no thought to. Like getting to class, for instance, or taking notes. Or even getting a drink of water.

The 22-year-old first year Computer Science undergraduate at the National University of Singapore has spastic quadriplegic cerebral palsy, which was caused by a brain injury during birth.

Although his condition affects his muscle control, motor skills and his speech, it proved no obstacle to his achieving good grades and clinching scholarships. Quite the opposite, he argues.

"My condition has gifted me resilience and patience in everything that I do," he said.

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LiveSnippets: Writing on-the-go

22 December 2020 CSFEATURES Department of Computer Science , Faculty , Feature , Media , Social Media & Digital Business

In April 2018, Hyeongcheol Kim flew to Montreal for work. The young PhD student was excited — it was his first time in the Canadian city and the conference he was about to attend was one of the biggest in his field of computer science. What’s more, Montreal was only a three hour journey from Quebec City, a place he had glimpsed many times on the small screen.

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PhD student Ahmad Asadullah wins Kauffman Best Student Paper Award at ICIS 2020

21 December 2020 Department of Information Systems & Analytics , Faculty , Student

21 December 2020 – Information Systems PhD student Ahmad Asadullah won the Kauffman Best Student Paper Award at the International Conference on Information Systems (ICIS) 2020.

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Towards personalised medicine: subtyping patients using their genomic data

18 December 2020 Department of Information Systems & Analytics , Faculty , Feature , Data Science & Business Analytics , Healthcare Informatics

 

Most pundits gazing into the crystal ball will likely shout two words in their prediction of healthcare’s future: precision medicine. Increasingly, there is growing recognition that tailoring treatments based on an individual’s lifestyle, genes, and environmental factors can yield much improved outcomes.

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Beyond the classroom: Innovations that change the world

14 December 2020 CSMEDIA Department of Computer Science , Faculty , News Media , Systems & Networking , Security

Lettuce, mint and even tomatoes – Singaporeans may soon be able to grow these vegetables and more in their HDB flats.

Having witnessed “a deep psychological fear” when COVID-19 sparked panic buying here, Toby Fong and his team – superFARM – decided to bolster the nation’s food security. Their plan? Encourage green fingers through home-based farming.

“When we think about food security, it’s usually at a national level so it almost feels like the individual (is disconnected) from the entire food security equation,” said Toby, who graduated with a Master’s from NUS Architecture this year.

Under the “Make Our People Better” category, Toby, NUS Computing graduate Lim Hui Qi and NUS Arts and Social Sciences graduate Ong Jun Ren will design modular farming units that can fit into the smallest of homes. These units can also be customised for bigger spaces.

The plan is to transform niche hydroponics systems into functional mini-farms. In the next six months, half of their $50,000 funding will go to research such as field testing and online surveys, while the rest will be used for prototype development.

The team also wants to expand the individual’s role in food security to make sustainability a way of life.

“We want to recalibrate people’s attitude and behaviour to encourage responsible food consumption,” said Toby.

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Associate Professor He Bingsheng wins IEEE TPDS 2019 Best Paper award

09 December 2020 Department of Computer Science , Faculty , Student

9 December 2020 – Associate Professor He Bingsheng and his collaborators have won the IEEE Transactions on Parallel and Distributed Systems 2019 Best Paper award.

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