For SPA2013 we have invited a speaker from the Computing at School organization
Computing at School
Neil BrownNeil Brown is a member of Computing At School and works as a computing education researcher at the University of Kent. He is part of the team that design, develop and support the beginners’ Java programming environments, BlueJ and Greenfoot, which between them have 3 million users annually. He also played a large part in the design and implementation of the Computing At School members’ site. His other responsibilities include conducting outreach workshops in Greenfoot for pupils and teachers, and engaging in educational research. Thus, Neil is situated at the intersection of software development, academia and computing education.
Neil's talkFive years ago, computer science was virtually absent from the UK school system before age 16, taught only by a few teachers under the banner of ICT. The Computing At School (CAS) group was formed in 2008 to help tackle this problem, bringing together teachers, academics, industry professionals and more to try to promote computer science in UK schools. In a whirlwind five years since, computer science has gone from nowhere to being proposed as mandatory for all 5—14 year olds in the new draft national curriculum, with new Computer Science GCSE qualifications offered by all the awarding bodies for ages 14—16. This talk will explain how these changes happened, the arguments behind computing for all, the ramifications and challenges that still lie ahead, and finally will look at how software professionals can help in the Computing At School effort.
Background at http://www.computingatschool.org.uk
Software Programming for Cells
Andrew Phillips, Head of Bio Computation Group at Microsoft ResearchAndrew is currently developing visual programming languages and tools for simulating and analysing complex models of biological systems. One of the aims is to develop a language in which large models of biological systems can be programmed from simple components in a modular fashion. An ultimate goal is to be able to program and simulate a biological system on a computer, before implementing the final design inside a living organism.
More information on Andrew at http://research.microsoft.com/en-us/people/aphillip/
Technology Leadership PanelIn tech conferences there appears to be a distance in approach and sometimes understanding between tech leaders and tech teams (the old 'managers-versus-techs' scenario). This is not always the reality of the situation. Whilst there is a good platform for techies to put their views and methodologies across in tech conferences at the team leavel, in these environments we don't often get the view of management (other than instances of direction or feedback). So, rather than heresay - lets discuss what its like to lead tech teams - an lets do it in a smaller conference with motivated 'movers-and-shakers' of the tech world attending, and see if, by sharing information, we can extend thinking and influence more useful and effective ways of bridging the management-tech 'gap' and making a difference somehow.
Chris Young, Head of Platforms and Architecture at Base79Using Kanban and Open Source Tech to make value from video on YouTube and Connected TV. Chris has been working in technology since 1996, specialising in digital media from 1999. He was involved in the BBC’s adoption of Agile in 2000-2001 for the pioneering Multi-Screen Wimbledon Service on Digital Satellite Television. Since then he has worked with broadcasters and platforms in the US and Europe including ITV, Dish Network, Deutsche Telekom and YouView, where he lead the team that developed its award winning User Interface.
Lukas Oberhuber, CTO - Simply BusinessLukas joined Simply Business as Chief Technology Officer in September 2010 with the aim of increasing flexibility and agility of the organisation through technology. Since joining he has implemented a number of new systems and processes including Agile and Build-Measure-Learn, transforming the speed and efficiency of new product development.
Prior to Simply Business, Lukas was CTO at Forward Internet Group, where he was responsible for the creation and management of Agile development teams during a period of huge company expansion. He has also held enterprise architecture and program management roles at business and technology consultancy, Sapient, as well as founding internet telecoms company, SipAlive.
Lukas is a graduate of Computer Science at Harvard University, holds dual French and US nationality and has worked in the US, Italy, Germany and the UK. When he's not building Agile teams Lukas enjoys creative writing and is a keen footballer. He is married with two daughters.