Cloud computing - HP Labs visit

02/04/2012 - 18:30
02/04/2012 - 19:00

Venue: HP Bristol Long Down Avenue, Stoke Gifford, Bristol, BS34 8QZ map

Speakers: TBA

Booking is required for this event, but attendance is free. Please go to to book your place.

The cloud and security research lab have created a G-Cloud demonstrator to articulate HP's vision of the future of cloud services. Our aim is to address the security and management challenges for operating next generation cloud services in large organisations, including government and defence.

The demonstrator transports the visitor to our vision of the world of IT services management in 2015, a world where an open ecosystem of cloud services is well established, and where dealing with security threats is even more critical than today. Governments and enterprise want to benefit from all of the flexibility and efficiency offered by the cloud model, but at the same time be assured that their services are protected against the future highly sophisticated, targeted and fast moving attacks.

Our futuristic concept demonstrator integrates HP Labs technology prototypes, showing the capability to deploy services up and down in a secure private or community cloud, and to deal with attacks.

Using Business Stories to Test Requirements and Systems

05/12/2011 - 19:00
05/12/2011 - 21:00

Speaker: Paul Gerard

Venue: City of Bristol College

7:00pm Refreshments, 7:30pm Main Talk

In conjunction with the Software Testing Club.

The use of stories to communicate dates back 30,000 years to the time when cave paintings recorded daily experience of people living as hunter-gatherers. If a software team uses a whiteboard to capture and talk about user stories to scope the next phase of development, they are drawing on an instinctive need to use examples, to criticise, discuss and refine them to arrive at a shared understanding. Stories worked for cavemen, they work for agile teams, and they’ll work for you too because they are universal.

Stories derived from written requirements can be used to walk-through business scenarios and when users see the proposed system ‘in action', requirements anomalies stand out and trigger informed discussions of situations, variations and outcomes. A disciplined approach to story-writing and requirements testing can improve requirements and the target solution dramatically. ‘Business Stories’ can be shared as examples for developers to see what was intended to help their understanding, and of course, they also provide the basis for later acceptance tests.

Up-front requirements testing doesn't require extra effort - much of this analysis work would be done during acceptance test preparation anyway. This approach provides a step-up with business impact analysis, regression testing, and even test automation.

Branch Xmas Event - Future Technology - a younger perspective

12/12/2011 - 18:00
12/12/2011 - 21:00

Speaker: Ian Hughes

Venue: @ Bristol

6:00pm Refreshments and @Bristol, 7:00pm Main Talk

The event is now full

If you think that playing games, understanding gadgets and keeping up with science and technology is great fun then you are coming to the right talk. If you don't then you need to come anyway and find out what you are missing!. If your parents ever say "stop playing video games" you can tell them that you are getting ready to the future. Ian plays a lot of games, works with a lot of gadgets and used to sit in an old fashioned office. You don't have to do that though as he can show you. Now he presents on the The Cool Stuff Collective TV show, invents new things, works with game developers, runs his own company and travels the world showing people the future. Everyday there is something new and interesting to learn about and if you know games and gadgets just a little bit you can not only have an awesome time but also change the world. Come and find out why.

Ian Hughes a.k.a epredator when online, is a Metaverse Evangelist and founder of Feeding Edge Ltd - Taking a bite out of technology so you don't have to. In 2006, whilst at IBM, he led thousands of colleagues into virtual worlds like Second Life with projects like Wimbledon. He has shown that leadership can be driven by the digital native and innovators can gather together regardless of geography or organization. Using creative expression online leads him to no longer be the programmer he grew up as. He presents an emerging technology slot on the ITV kids show The Cool Stuff Collective, third series to air late 2011. Ian is the chair of the BCS Animation and Games industry Group. If you discover anything else about Ian feel free to update him on wikipedia

Mobile Application Security and Privacy: State of the Disunion

23/11/2011 - 19:00
23/11/2011 - 21:00

Speaker: Graham Lee

Venue: City of Bristol College

7:00pm Refreshments, 7:30pm Main Talk

The new smartphone application platforms launched toward the end of the last decade brought new problems, but also a chance to break out of the backwards compatibility shackles imposed on desktop operating systems.

In fact existing issues were only partially addressed and failures-both ancient and modern-still remain. In this talk Graham Lee will summarise how the security and privacy landscape changed with the rapid adoption of smartphone apps, and what changes are still to come.

Graham Lee is the resident smartphone security boffin at Fuzzy Aliens Limited, an application security company based in Oxford. When he isn't making the app stores a safer place for everyone, he talks and writes for developers about mobile security issues. He is also a volunteer at the Museum of Computing.

The ‘new’ CIO: breaking the traditional mindset of the IT function

26/10/2011 - 19:00
26/10/2011 - 21:00

AGM and Branch meeting

Speaker: Neil Farmer

Venue: City of Bristol College

7:00pm AGM 7:15pm Refreshments 7:30pm Main Talk

Without getting ‘buy in’ to changes from relatively few key individuals (<5%) across an organisation, most people-intensive change initiatives are doomed to failure.

Traditional top-down change programmes have consistently focused on the change messages (WHAT we want to achieve and HOW we go about achieving it) targeted at broad stakeholder groups.

To avoid high levels of failure, however, we need a much clearer focus on “WHO are the key individuals whose support we really need?” Find the key influencer's and natural leaders, let them guide you in all the people aspects of change, and become much, much more effective.

Based on extensive practical experience of five major change programmes, this summary of three articles that Neil wrote in 2010 for Angelica Mari in Computer Weekly just might change the way you approach the role of CIO in future.

Effective Specifications & Tests for Agile Projects (Software Testing Series)

19/09/2011 - 19:00
19/09/2011 - 21:00

Speaker: Gojko Adzic

Venue: City of Bristol College

Fast turnaround in agile projects requires the specifications and testing processes to fit into to short iterations, which is a challenge for many teams when they start out with agile development. As a result, analysts and testers are often confused about how to engage in a weekly delivery process and developers don't have enough information to deliver the right product without wasteful rework. In this presentation, Gojko Adzic talks about set of process patterns that facilitate change in software products to ensure that the right product is delivered efficiently with short iterations. He presents how to organise requirements, specifications and tests effectively to support an agile development process.

Gojko Adzic is a strategic consultant who helps ambitious teams, from investment banks to web portals, to improve the quality of their software products and processes. Get in touch on or @gojkoadzic

Lessons from Experience in test automation

13/02/2012 - 19:00
13/02/2012 - 21:00

Speaker: Mark Fewster

Venue: City of Bristol College

7:00pm Refreshments, 7:30pm Main Talk

Oh no! Is this yet another approach to Test Automation? Actually, no it isn't. This is about what other peoples' experience with test automation can teach us - how it can help us capitalise on good ideas and avoid potentially useless ones.
A new book by Dorothy Graham and Mark Fewster "Experiences of Test Automation" published in January describes 28 case histories of test automation across a rich variety of application domains, environments and organisations. The book includes success stories, failure stories, and a few so-far-so-good stories.

While every story is different, there are many common elements running through these case studies. In this presentation Mark highlights some of the common themes that span both management and technical issues. For example, the influence managers have over test automation success and failure, the importance of keeping management informed and involved, and the need to match an appropriate level of investment with the desired objectives. Some of the technical issues include attention to testware architecture at an early stage, consistency of working methods to encourage reuse and reduce maintenance costs, and the quality of scripting.

By studying the experience of others we can start or progress our own test automation with a deeper understanding of the important issues, mitigate risks and capitalise on opportunities.

Achieving successful IT enabled business change

11/01/2012 - 19:00
11/01/2012 - 21:00

Speaker: Professor M.J. Norton

Venue: City of Bristol College

7:00pm Refreshments, 7:30pm Main Talk

Jim Norton’s presentation will address the continuing challenge of achieving successful and sustainable business transformation facilitated by new IT systems. It is based very firmly on the view that in both private and public sectors “there is no such thing as an IT project – only business change projects enabled by new IT systems”.

It will analyse both successful and unsuccessful projects and will highlight a series of key ground rules for successful business change. The presentation contains recommendations both for the business elements of the change programme and for the IT elements.

In particular it calls for holistic budgeting of the change programme, sharing research carried out by the Institute of Directors on private sector best practice, which indicates that typically 80% of the budget needs to go on the ‘people and process’ elements of the change and only 20% on the associated IT systems. It also identifies the need for an entire programme of work to develop stronger software engineering methods that are soundly based on computer science and mathematically rigorous.

Cloud Computing in Biomedicine and Healthcare -- Prospects and Concerns

27/06/2011 - 18:30
27/06/2011 - 20:30

Venue: Glendinning Lecture Theatre (room 2D67) UWE Frenchay Campus
Poster: Please help promote this event by displaying the poster on your company noticeboard

In association with the University of the West of England, we are please to bring you a special evening series of lectures as part of the Healthgrid 2011 conference.


  • Ian Herbert, Vice-Chair, BCS Health
  • Dr Nick Papanicolaou, HP Labs
  • Professor Luciano Floridi, Herts/Oxford
  • Dr Hanene Rahmouni, UWE

Chaired by

  • Dr Peter Murphy, Bristol Children's Hospital and UK Faculty of Health Informatics

This discussion meeting will be followed by a reception. In order to arrange catering, we need to know numbers. BCS Bristol members please indicate your intention to attend by emailing with the subject line BCS Event and giving your name. Thanks.

The Antikythera Mechanism Decoded

09/05/2011 - 19:00
09/05/2011 - 21:00

This is joint event brought to you by the IET and BCS Bristol branches.

Venue: Lecture theater 1.11 Merchant Venturers’ Building, University of Bristol, Woodland Road, Bristol, BS8 1UB Map

Please help promote this event by putting this Poster on your notice board.

What may well be the most extraordinary surviving artefact from the ancient Greek world was discovered just over a century ago. Found in 1900 in a wreck off the coast of the Mediterranean island of Antikythera, the device contains over thirty gear wheels and dates from around 100 B.C. Now known as the Antikythera Mechanism, it is an order of magnitude more complicated than any surviving mechanism from the following millennium, and there is no surviving precursor. It is clear from its structure and inscriptions that it is an astronomical calculator, although its exact purpose is still shrouded in mystery. Over the past few years an international research program has involved scientists from Greece, the UK and HP labs in Paolo Alto, California. The use of cutting-edge technology has revealed a great deal more about the structure, function and inscriptions of the Mechanism. This illustrated review will describe the modern research methods we have used, and the profound implications of the results for the development of ancient Greek astronomy, philosophy and technology.

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