Computer Science Departmental News

New interim chair and lecturer named

Professor Simone Ludwig has been named interim chair of the Department of Computer Science at North Dakota State University. She joined the department in the fall of 2010 after working at the University of Saskatchewan (Canada), Concordia University (Canada), Cardiff University (UK) and Brunel University (UK). She received her PhD and MSc with distinction from Brunel University (UK), in 2004 and 2000, respectively. Before starting her academic career, she worked several years in the software industry.

Dr. Ludwig's research interests lie in the area of computational intelligence, including swarm intelligence, evolutionary computation, neural networks, and fuzzy reasoning. In particular, she works on the application of computational intelligence methods and algorithms to the optimization of data mining (including big data), image processing, privacy and security, and speech recognition. In addition, Dr. Ludwig conducts research in the area of machine learning.

We are also happy to announce that Dan Kahn has recently joined the department as a lecturer. Dan worked at Abbott Laboratories, Lucent Technologies, Motorola, and Hewlitt Packard during his corporate life. Additionally, he taught at Illinois Institute of Technology as an Industry Professor and at University of South Dakota before joining NDSU.  Please join us in welcoming Dan to the department!


Inspiring Teacher: Anne Denton, professor of computer science

February 13, 2020
Anne Denton’s passion for computing drives her to create a rich experience for students in the computer science department. Denton teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in database systems and computational technologies for environmental sustainability.

“One of my main goals is to make sure that students understand the “real world” side of the topics I teach,” Denton said. “Database textbooks sometimes perpetuate ideas that have long been rejected by companies. I make an effort to get first-hand information from practitioners, including employees of our own IT division as well as database administrators and technologists in the region and beyond.”

Read the full story here.


NDSU hosts Computer Science Education Week speakers

December 31, 2019
The NDSU computer science department hosted several regional computing professionals for Computer Science Education Week.  Computer Science Education Week was proclaimed by Governor Doug Burgum, in North Dakota and sponsored nationally by a collection of organizations, including the Association for Computing Machinery, IEEE, Google and Microsoft. Read full article.


NDSU Team takes 2nd Place in Digi-Key Collegiate Computing Competition

October 18, 2019
A team of three NDSU Computer Science students, Nicholas Pfeifer, Wyly Andrews, and Eric Myers take 2nd place at the 2019 Digi-Key Collegiate Computing Competition

The 3.5 hour competition consists of three main events—two programming sessions and word problem session. The second place team takes back $3,000 for their institution plus an individual prize valued at $200.


NDSU hosts 2019 ICPC north central NA regional programming competition

November 9, 2019
NDSU was a site host for the 2019 International Collegiate Programming Contest (ICPC).  Twenty teams from North Dakota State University, University of North Dakota, Minnesota State University Moorhead, Concordia College, Bemidji State University, and University of  University of Minnesota Morris attended the five hour event.

Ph.D. Students work on groundbreaking artificial intelligence research.

April 8, 2019
Ph.D. Students Shadi Alian and Bikesh Maharjan work on groundbreaking artificial intelligence research designed to provide targeted health care for American Indian patients with diabetes.

The project, which received a nearly $1 million National Science Foundation grant, is led by computer science professors Jen Li and Jun Kong. Computer science graduate students Bikesh Maharjan and Shadi Alian also play an integral role in the research.

“This project gives students an excellent opportunity to apply what they have learned from their graduate courses to real application, which will be used with real patients,” Li said.  “This sort of hands-on knowledge can't easily be taught in textbooks or classes since it requires a real setting where people are doing real work and not just preset exercises with known results. Everything they are learning will be valuable experiences for their future career as researchers or engineers.”

The research project is a targeted and personalized diabetes management aid for members of the Minnesota Lower Sioux Tribe. One of the components is an app that uses the latest artificial intelligence technology to provide patients with real-time health management recommendations for food, exercise and social activity. With help from projects like this, NDSU and the computer science department have become regional leaders in artificial intelligence and cybersecurity. 

The app also provides a direct link to health care providers, who can use the app to closely monitor their patients. The direct link is especially important for the American Indian population, which often has poor access to health care due to location and other factors.

Maharjan and Alian are working on coding the app and doing in-depth research to make the finished product as personalized as possible. They work hand-in-hand with Li, the medical community and the tribe.

“The opportunity to help the tribe is one of the motivations that made the project even more important for me,” Alian said. “I’m helping to do something really good for people who actually need it. It’s not just something for me to say ‘look at this thing I did.’ It’s helping people who actually need help.”

The research project is supported by NSF grant No. 1722913. 

Read the full article on Experience NDSU here.

NDSU computer science announces participation in Cyber Fast Track national competition

February 20, 2019
As part of its support for the North Dakota-wide K-20W effort, the North Dakota State University Department of Computer Science announced today that it will have students participate in the Cyber Fast Track program.  The K-20W initiative is a collaborative effort with more than 40 public and private sector partners who are advancing statewide efforts to provide computer science and cybersecurity training and resources to North Dakota’s educators and students ranging from kindergarten through Ph.D. students and into the workforce.  The Cyber Fast Track program allows students to assess and demonstrate their skills to succeed in cybersecurity careers through a specialized online assessment tool and game. 

North Dakota is one of only 26 states eligible for students to participate in the program.  Students competing in the Cyber Fast Track program can win prizes from a $2.5 million prize pool including scholarships and access to professional certifications and specialized instructional materials.

“The Computer Science Department at NDSU has been actively participating in the state-wide K-20W initiative,” noted department chair Kendall E. Nygard.  “We are excited to be part of this program and encourage our students to engage in the game environment when it becomes available later this spring.”

NDSU computer science graduate named VP technology for Forum Communications

February 16, 2019
NDSU Computer Science graduate Rodney Holm has been hired as the Forum Communications Company vice president of technology.  Prior to joining Forum Communications, Holm worked as director of IT and engineering at Email on Acid in Denver and vice president of engineering at FocusVision Worldwide.  He joined FocusVision when they acquired the assets of QualVu, which he co-founded and served as the chief technology officer of.

According to the company, Holm will “lead the organization in development and maintenance of digital products, content delivery systems and Informational Technology systems.”

Holm is originally from Jamestown, North Dakota and graduated from NDSU with a B.S. in computer science in 1997.

Read more at Inforum.

Dr Lu Liu featured in NDSU's Office of Research and Creative Activity's RCA update

December 10, 2018

What are your primary research and scholarly interests?
Bioinformatics, Data Mining, Machine Learning and Computational Biology.

Where are you from and where did you pursue your education?
I am from China and I received my Ph.D. from the University of Texas at San Antonio. 

What excites you about NDSU?
Research and collaboration opportunities. 

What motivates you?
My family.

NDSU hosts 2018 ICPC north central NA regional programming competition.

November 3, 2018
NDSU was a site host for the 2018 International Collegiate Programming Contest (ICPC).  Twenty-seven teams from North Dakota State University, University of North Dakota. Minnesota State University Moorhead, Concordia College, and University of Minnesota Morris attended the five hour event.

Site Results:             Regional Results:
1 - North Dakota State University
2 - University of North Dakota
3 - University of Minnesota Morris

1 - South Dakota School of Mines and Technology
2 - University of Nebraska Lincoln
3 - University of Wisconsin Madison

Computer science adviser recognized at an NDSU men’s basketball game.

February 27, 2018
Joan Krush, Adviser/Lecturer in Computer Science was recognized recently at an NDSU Men’s Basketball game. She was nominated as someone who “makes a difference” in student-athlete’s undergraduate experience. Joan was nominated by student-athlete Jordan Meidinger, a sophomore Computer Science major.

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