Searching for UFOs


Software Engineering BSc(Hons) final year student, Dominik Boller, has developed camera software to automatically record unusual sightings in the sky.

Dominik’s ‘UFO Detector’ analyses the sky for anomalies and uses computer vision algorithms to record videos.

In his interview on BBC Sussex radio, Dominik talks to Neil Pringle about his project.

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Steven steps up to success!

Steven Salama, who graduates this month with a BSc (Hons) Software Engineering, has won the National Student Employee Step Up to Leadership Award 2016.

Steven, who balances his studies with work for Brighton-based software company RDF Group, saw off stiff competition at university, regional and national levels.

Steven Salama

Steven Salama

Commenting on his achievement, Steven said: “I am very proud of this award because it came after a lot of determination and hard work. Working and studying in parallel is a challenge. But being able to balance both has taught me a lot of skills which are useful in everyday life. It is a privilege to be the first University of Brighton student to win the national Step Up to Leadership award and be named student employee of the year. I would like to thank my tutors at the University, RDF Group and especially my family for all of their support.”

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Universities of Brighton and Cambridge share £368,000 Leverhulme grant

The universities of Brighton and Cambridge have won a £367,700 grant to research the use of diagrams instead of mathematical symbols to make complex data accessible to more people.

Scientific advances today increasingly depend on understanding, manipulating and querying data – and businesses which can capitalise on the value of information will have a competitive edge.

Traditional mathematical logics used to represent information are inaccessible to most people but by combining computer science and cognitive science, researchers aim to develop a novel and accessible diagram-based logic suitable for information representation and reasoning across a wide range of subject areas.


Dr. Gem Stapleton

Dr Gem Stapleton, Reader in Computer Science in the University of Brighton’s College of Life, Health and Physical Sciences, said: “The tools we develop will enable better communication and understanding between those who produce models to represent information, and those who use them, and ultimately lead to more robust and effective models to underpin scientific research.

“A particularly exciting aspect of our project is that it draws on both computer science and cognitive science to address a long-held assumption that using diagrams makes modelling and reasoning accessible. To do this, we will produce a formal and accessible diagrammatic reasoning system. In doing so, we aim to bring the full communicative benefits of diagrams to the field of knowledge management.

“This will enable non-specialist users to access and understand data, a process which is vital to scientific advances in the 21st century.”

The grant, which will fund two post-doctoral researchers, one at Brighton and one at Cambridge, for three years, has come from the Leverhulme Trust which makes awards for the support of research and education. It was started by Victorian businessman William Lever who founded Lever Brothers.

The lead researcher at Cambridge is Dr Mateja Jamnik, Senior Lecturer in the Computer Laboratory. For more information on Dr Stapleton, go to: and for more information about the research project, go to:


User centred design at IBM talk

A speaker from IBM is coming along TODAY at 13.00  in Watts 107 to talk about user centred design at IBM. She’ll be describing what it is like to be a Designer at IBM (including IBM’s legacy with design), the different design roles and what to expect if you were to work as a Designer at IBM e.g. the people/social side, perks of the role etc. She will also include how she got in to the industry and the growth in focus on usability.

UX Camp Brighton

UX BrightonWe’re proud to be a sponsor of UX Camp Brighton which takes place on Saturday 19th March 2016 at City College Brighton. According to the organisers:

This popular ‘unconference’ is for anyone involved or interested in user experience design, user research, interaction design, information architecture, usability, accessibility and other associated fields.

Attendees either run or participate in 20 minute sessions, such as talks, demos or discussions. No headliners, no product pitches, just a friendly (if intense) event focused on sharing, socialising and learning new stuff.

At the University of Brighton we have a tradition of teaching a range of User Experience (UX) courses and modules with strong demand for graduates with these skills.

My Own Hack Event

This post was written by Becky Rush (a 2nd year student on our BSc (Hons) Digital Media Development. It first appeared on her personal blog:

So, I’m now a second year at university and I’ve realised I really should be blogging about what I’ve been doing.
Towards the end of my first year a few of us decided to set up a society to enrich the academic and social experience of primarily computing students at the University of Brighton. And so, The Digital Society was born.

Today was a big day for me as it was the first academic style event put on by the society which we organised ourselves. It’s been a pretty stressful process but a fun one too – and I have learnt a lot! Our event was a hack-style event in collaboration with BeePurple (who are fantastic, check them out) to celebrate Global Entrepreneurship Week.

Proposal: Participants are given 3 hours to work in small teams to develop an idea which fulfils the brief ‘Smarter Living’ (detailed below). The idea is for students develop employability skills whilst having fun by seeing what ideas they can come up with and prototype in a limited period of time. These can take the form of digital assets such as websites or apps, physical products or even a community workshop/scheme. These will then be presented to the group in 3 minutes or less and judged by an independent panel with a prize for the winning team. The brief will be announced in advance with participants encouraged to think of ideas to pitch at the start of the event.

Brief: ‘Smarter Living’ Use technology to create something commercially viable that makes life better, focusing around wearable tech, the internet of things or entertainment.
Despite a lower turn out than expected it was a great day – with brilliant ideas, plenty of pizza and a cash prize kindly donated by Entrepreneurial Spark. Our judging panel included fantastic representatives from BeePurple, Entrepreneurial Spark, Santander, University of Brighton Careers Service and The Digital Society and the whole event was sponsored by these lovely organisations as well as the University of Brighton Alumni. I also got to write and sign a couple of those giant cheques – oooh the power!

University of Brighton HackathonUniversity of Brighton HackathonUniversity of Brighton Hackathon



All in all, a pretty decent first event for The Digital Society, here’s to the next one!

Entrepreneurship Hack – Digital Society, Friday 20 November

Beepurple have teamed up with the Digital Society to host a hackathon on Friday 20th November.

Attendees will have 4 and a half hours to conceptualise, prototype/plan and present a product/service that makes life easier for a certain user group, focussing on the internet of things, wearable tech or entertainment.

There are prizes worth £200 for the winning team!

Details and sign up