News and Events
August 4, 2015
Amazon Web Services Research Grant awarded to Patrick Seeling
Amazon, Inc. awarded Assistant Professor Dr. Patrick Seeling with the Department of Computer Science at Central Michigan University an Amazon Web Services (AWS) Research Grant. 

Amazon Web Services is a collection of remote computing services that together make up a cloud computing platform, offered over the Internet by Amazon, Inc.  The award allows for $3900 in credits to Amazon’s cloud computer server environment at multiple locations worldwide.

For multiple years, Dr. Seeling and Troy Johnson, who is currently finishing his MS in Computer Science, investigated the characteristics of the world wide web and how browsers on desktop or mobile devices access web pages and their contents. Their research led to several publications, including one in the third ranked publication in telecommunications (based on ISI Impact factor 2014): T. A. Johnson and P. Seeling, "Desktop and Mobile Web Page Comparison: Characteristics, Trends, and Implications,” IEEE Communications Magazine, vol. 52, iss. 9, pp. 144-151, 2014.  

Access to the AWS cloud will allow Dr. Seeling and Troy Johnson to investigate how today’s mobile devices access the world wide web and where performance is wasted because servers are non-optimal configured and content is downloaded too often, wasting network capacities and cellular plan data caps next to the limited energy found in mobile devices.​


April 20, 2015
Virtual to reality video games to help teach disabled children cognitive skills
​Video games could change the lives of children with intellectual disabilities as students and professors work together to create a safer way to teach kids functional skills like crossing the street.

Computer science summer courses available

February 25, 2014 - Looking to get some courses in over the summer? Check out the list of what's available this year from the CMU Department of Computer Science.

Summer Session 1: May 19 - June 26, 2014

  • CPS 180, Principles of Computer Programming
    Monday-Friday, 10:00-11:50 AM
    Section # 22261681, Professor Ugur
    Meets in Pearce Hall 124 with labs held in Pearce Hall 423

Summer Session 2: June 30 - August 7, 2014

  • CPS 100, Computers and Society
    Monday-Thursday, 8:00-9:50 AM
    Section # 22262688, Professor Cregger
    Meets in Pearce Hall 126 with labs held in Pearce Hall 424
  • CPS 181, Introduction to Data Structures
    Monday-Thursday, 10:00-11:50 AM
    Section # 22261682, Professor Kinnicutt
    Meets in Pearce Hall 126 with labs held in Pearce Hall 423
  • ITC 101, Reasoning through Computer Visualization
    Monday-Thursday, 10:00-11:50 AM
    Section # 22261675, Professor Stinson
    Meets in Pearce Hall 124 with labs held in Pearce Hall 424

Smartphone Security

In November 2013, CMU's Department of Computer Science was visited and interviewed by Traverse City's CBS affiliate about the issue of smartphone security. Reports have been surfacing that indicate smartphones present a security risk by revealing the location of the user, since through geo-tagging, GPS coordinates can be embedded into the header portion of an image file. Anyone with the correct software can then determine the exact location of where the picture was taken.

On iOS devices, this feature is enabled by default, allowing users to perform useful tasks, such as searching through their photos by location. Many people take several photos using their smartphones, but if you ask someone, for example, to show you pictures of their trip to Alaska last summer, they will have a hard time going back through hundreds of pictures to try to find the ones that pertain to that particular trip. However, with geo-tagging enabled, a smartphone user simply has to look at a map of the United States and zoom to the state of Alaska. Then all of the photos taken in that location will be shown.

Unfortunately, criminals are increasingly taking advantage of geo-tagging to find out where a person is. If you take a photo and email it to all of your friends, anyone that they then share that photo with is able to figure out exactly where you were when that photo was taken. Some people are concerned that if a picture of their child is shared, for example, criminals will be able to determine exactly where their favorite park is. While this is true, it is also not as widespread as most people believe.

Social media sites like Facebook and Instagram remove all geo-tagged information by default so that pictures available on these publicly-visible platforms will not contain any geographic information relating to where the photo was taken. Of course, any signage in the background of the photo may contain clues to the location, so anyone posting a photo needs to be aware of the content within it.

The important thing to remember is that photos taken with a smartphone that are then emailed will still contain the geo-tagged information by default, but this geo-tagging information capture is a feature can be turned off in the settings menu of the device, thereby preventing any security issues from arising.

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