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Oxford Expands Algorithms Research

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‘Algorithm' is another way of saying 'way to do something' – a methodical procedure for solving a problem or carrying out a task – so is at the very heart of what programming is, but completely independent from the programing language. Not only do Algorithms contribute to the way a computer runs, but they also contribute to the speed and effectiveness of all of the computer’s software, programs, commands and capabilities.

The investment will see Oxford bringing together its current expertise in this area, into one Theme, and welcoming new experts to the Department. Oxford’s Georg Gottlob will head the new Theme. Elias Koutsoupia has recently joined the Department from the University of Athens, bringing with him extensive expertise in algorithmic game theory, its applications to the internet, the web, and the economy, online algorithms, and more-generally decision-making under uncertainty. The appointment of two further world-class algorithms experts is due to be announced in the coming weeks.

The launch of the new theme is to be marked by a two-day meeting of world-class researchers in the field, to be held jointly between the Department of Computer Science and St John’s College. Speakers, including winners of the Turing Award, Godel Prize and the Knuth Prize will speak on their work, the applications to areas as diverse as biology, economics, computational linguistics, computer security and databases.

Professor Christos Papadimitriou of the University of California at Berkeley will be giving the conference’s keynote talk, the Strachey Lecture. His talk, entitled Computational Insights and the Theory of Evolution will explore some central problems in Evolution that was inspired and informed by computational ideas.

Information on the workshop is available at: http://algo.cs.ox.ac.uk/workshop2012/

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