Welcome to SURPRISE 97
(May-June 1997)

Department of Computing,
Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering,
Imperial College of Science Technology and Medicine,
180 Queen's Gate, London SW7 2BZ, UK


Mobile Robotics Navigation 

Reporters: Jonathan Dixon (jmd) and Oliver Henlich (oh) 
Supervisor: Dr. Stuart Cox 

Article 1 (jmd): An Overview of Global Mobile Robot Navigation: Global Positioning 
Article 1 (oh): An Overview of Local/Personal Robot Navigation: "Where am I going and how do I get there" 

Article 2 (jmd): Global Reference Navigation for Mobile Robots: Issues in Practical Implementation 
Article 2 (oh): Vision-Based Positioning 

Q&A Test: Mobile Robot Navigation 
Final Report: Mobile Robot Navigation

The Millenium Bug 

Reporters: Jeyakody Kesavan (jk12) and Arasanth Kimis (ak16) 
Supervisor: Dr. Krysia Broda (kb) 

Article 1 (jk12): Year 2000 Problems 
Article 1 (ak16): Surely someone has found the solution for the Year 2000 problem? 

Article 2 (jk12): Problems with Hardware and Software 
Article 2 (ak16): P on Year 2000: A Guide to Coping with the Y2K Problem 

Q&A Test: The Millennium Bug 
Final Report: The Millennium Bug

Quantum Computing 

Reporters: Simon Bone (spb3) and Matias Castro (mjc5) 
Supervisor: Dr. Naranker Dulay (nd) 

Article 1 (spb3): The Hitchhiker's Guide To Quantum Computing : Don't Panic 
Article 1 (mjc5): Do I Invest in Quantum Communications Links For My Company? 

Article 2 (spb3): Will We Ever Be Able To Build A Quantum Computer? 
Article 2 (mjc5): What Use is My Quantum Computer Now I Have it? 

Q&A Test: Quantum Queries Q&A Quiz 
Final Report: A Brief History of Quantum Computing

Networking Infrastructure: Technologies and Architectures 

Reporters: Ming Lim (mhl) and Shay Seng (sps) 
Supervisor: Dr. Steve Vickers (sjv) 

Article 1 (mhl): An Overview of Ethernet 
Article 1 (sps): Asynchronous Transfer Mode Technology 

Article 2 (mhl): Gigabit Ethernet 
Article 2 (sps): Network Architecture and Organisation 

Q&A Test: Network Infrastructure Technologies and Architectures 
Final Report: Network Infrastructure Technologies and Architectures

Use-Related Computer Failures 

Reporters: Benjamin Tristem (bvct) and Hugh Jackson (hafj) 
Supervisor: Dr. Elizabeth Pollitzer (eep) 

Article 1 (bvct): Safety Critical HCI Systems in Modern Aviation 
Article 1 (hafj): Do We Expect Too Much of Computers? 
Article 2 (bvct): Usability Heuristics Applied to Modern Aviation 
Article 2 (hafj): User Interface Design - How Can It Be Improved? 

Q&A Test: Use-Related Computer Failures 
Final Report: Use-Related Computer Failures: Heuristic Evaluation and its Application in Modern Aviation

Actors as a Model of Mobile Computing 

Reporters: Pradeep Loganathan (pl5) and Paul Mackay (pjm2) 
Supervisor: Prof. Tom Maibaum (tsem) 

Article 1 (pl5): The Challenges and Requirements of Mobile Computing 
Article 1 (pjm2): To be or not to be - that is the question (the actors model) 

Article 2 (pl5): Actors and Asynchronous Distributed Systems 
Article 2 (pjm2): Why has the actor model not succeeded? 

Q&A Test: Actors as a Model of Mobile Computing 
Final Report: Actors as a Model of Mobile Computing

Natural Language Processing Opportunities on the Internet 

Reporters: Hiran Sumanaweera (hks) and Chin Tan (ctt) 
Supervisor: Dr. Chris Moss (cdsm) 

Article 1 (hks): Natural Language Processing Applications 
Article 1 (ctt): Natural Language Processing... Understanding What You Say 

Article 2 (hks): NLP Applications: How It Is Done 
Article 2 (ctt): Techniques used in Natural Language Processing 

Q&A Test: Natural Language Processing 
Final Report: Natural Language Processing Opportunities on the Internet

Stochastic Models of Manufacturing Systems 

Reporters: Wan Li (wll1) and Nicholas Chapman (njc1) 
Supervisor: Dr. Ram Chakka (rsc) 

Article 1 (wll1): Stochastic Modelling of Manufacturing Systems - A Business Advantage 
Article 1 (njc1): Role of Performance Modelling in Automated Manufacturing Systems 

Article 2 (wll1): Approaches to Performance Evaluation 
Article 2 (njc1): Petri Net Models 

Q&A Test: Stochastic Modelling of Manufacturing Systems 
Final Report: Stochastic Modelling of Manufacturing Systems

Software Technology used to Maintain Web Content  

Reporters: Mageshkumar Marutha Pillai (mmp) and Peter Gagnon (pcg1) 
Supervisor: Dr. Frank Kriwaczek (frk) 

Article 1 (mmp): A Look at Net File Formats 
Article 1 (pcg1): Programming languages for the World Wide Web 

Article 2 (mmp): How Secure is Web software and Internet Commerce??? 
Article 2 (pcg1): P Software for the Internet: The HyperText Transfer Protocol 

Q&A Test: A Web Technology used to Maintain Web Content 
Final Report: Software Used to Maintain Web Content

10  Portable Programming 

Reporters: Mohamad Safuan (msa1) and Tracey Au Yeung (tay) 
Supervisor: Susan Eisenbach (se) 

Article 1 (msa1): Compiling Techniques of JAVA 
Article 1 (tay): JAVA, Yet Another Language? 

Article 2 (msa1): Portability of Java 
Article 2 (tay): JAVA Development Environmen

Q&A Test: Portable Programming 
Final Report: Portable Programming

11  Where Can Intelligent Agents be Used in Travel Reservation Systems? 

Reporters: Alexis Michaelides (ardm) and Nicholas Moraitakis (nm1) and George Georgallides (gg5) 
Supervisor: Dr Phillipe de Wilde (p.de-wilde@ic.ac.uk) 

Article 1 (ardm): Travel Reservation Systems: A General Overview 
Article 1 (nm1): Intelligent Software Agents Application and Classification 
Article 1 (gg5): Capabilities and Applications of Software Agents 

Article 2 (ardm): Online Travel Reservation Systems : Case Study. How Intelligent Are They? 
Article 2 (nm1): An Agent-Based View of Minds and Intelligence 
Article 2 (gg5): An Overview of Existing Software Travel Agents 

Q&A Test: Intelligent Agent Technology in Travel Reservation Systems 
Final Report: Intelligent Agent Agents in Travel Reservation Systems 


Intelligent agents are computer processes that are running locally in nodes of a network. They can interface to other programs, for example to build up a profile of your preferences, to manage your money, to filter out unwanted email, etc. 

In the USA and France it is popular to book travel using a PC at home. The central booking programmes have to inform the users about the possibilities, but also take the bookings, and communicate with the airline reservation systems, for example. 

First, you will read up on agents and travel booking systems separately, and then you will see what are the ways to combine them. You will experiment with some of the travel booking systems over the Web.

12  A Global Telecommunications Map 

Reporters: Khairul Abdul-Aziz (kaa2) and Shafik Mashar (sam5) 
Supervisor: Dr Phillipe de Wilde (p.de-wilde@ic.ac.uk) 

Article 1 (kaa2): The Revolution Of International Telecommunications 
Article 1 (sam5): Mobile Telephone Technology 

Article 2 (kaa2): Global Telecommunications Development: Statistical Data and Growth Pattern 
Article 2 (sam5): Trade in Telecommunications 

Q&A Test: Global Telecommunications Map 
Final Report: Global Telecommunications: Development and Mapping 


You will establish a telecommunications map of the world. For every country, you will find how many users there are, what bandwidth they have available, what they pay for it, to whom they pay (state, private company, owned by whom?), what choice they have (mobile, ISDN). You will also estimate the traffic between the countries. For digital transmission, you have to find how much is voice, and how much is data. 

You will mirror on a small scale the Global Telecom Research Team of Salomon Brothers. 

Part of your deliverable will be actual maps you have created.

13  Web Search Engines 

Reporters: Martin Collins (mjc4) and Marcos Scriven (mms1) 
Supervisor: Dr Thomas Clarke (t.clarke@ic.ac.uk) 

Article 1 (mjc4): Tuning your Engine: Using an Internet Search Engine 
Article 1 (mms1): Spreading The Word: A Guide To Publishing On The WWW 

Article 2 (mjc4): A Push In The Right Direction: A Guide to Push Technology on the Web 
Article 2 (mms1): The Robot Invasion: Taming Internet Retrieval Agents 

Q&A Test: The Search Engine Quiz 
Final Report: Search Engines

14  PC 2000 

Reporters: Lee Leong (lpl) and Shahrul Mohd Saari (mssa) 
Supervisor: Dr Thomas Clarke (t.clarke@ic.ac.uk) 

Article 1 (lpl): The Birth of the PC 
Article 1 (mssa): PC: The People Factor 

Article 2 (lpl): MEMORIES.... 
Article 2 (mssa): THE SUPER-BRAINS: a look at PC processors 

Q&A Test: PC 2000 : Questions and Answers 
Final Report: Towards PC 2000

15  Intelligent Networks 

Reporters: Vincent Avery (vra) and John Matta (jm4) 
Supervisor: Dr Javier Barria (j.barria@ic.ac.uk) 

Article 1 (vra): Intelligent Networks : Development & Implementation Standards 
Article 1 (jm4): Intelligent Networks : The Solution for a Changing World 

Article 2 (vra): Intelligent Networks : TINA - The Way Forward For Networks 
Article 2 (jm4): Intelligent Networks: Relations to Other Telecommunications Systems 

Q&A Test: Intelligent Networks: Test Your Knowledge! 
Final Report: Intelligent Networks: A Concept for the 21st Century

16  Telecommunication Management Network (TMN) 

Reporters: Ting Li (tkl1) and Ka-Tat Shing (kts1) 
Supervisor: Dr Javier Barria (j.barria@ic.ac.uk) 

Article 1 (tkl1): Telecommunication Management Network - Management Services (TMN-MS) 
Article 1 (kts1): An Introduction to TMN 

Article 2 (tkl1): Telecommunication Management Network - Management Function 
Article 2 (kts1): Integrating TMN and IN 

Q&A Test: TMN: Multiple Choice 
Final Report: TMN & IN

17  Information Technology in the Music Industry 

Reporters: William Smith (wefs) and Andrew Swift (aps2) 
Supervisor: Dr Patrick Naylor (p.naylor@ic.ac.uk) 

Article 1 (wefs): The Death of the Record Label? 
Article 1 (aps2): An Introduction to MIDI 

Article 2 (wefs): Recordable Digital Media 
Article 2 (aps2): A Brief Guide to NICAM 

Q&A Test: Information Technology in the Music Industry 
Final Report: New Music Culture, New Music Technology 


This survey will review the current state of the art and extrapolate trends in the application of information technology to the music industry. 

Specific areas to be covered will be Digital Audio Broadcast, digital recording of audio and standards in digital musical instruments.

18  Advances in non-CPU Devices 

Reporters: Nishan Perera (ncp) and Ali Yaqoob (ary) 
Supervisor: Dr. Naranker Dulay (nd) 

Article 1 (ncp): Your Hand as an Input Device 
Article 1 (ary): Future of Computing (Optical & Biological Possibilities) 

Article 2 (ncp): Buses 
Article 2 (ary): Computer Cache Design 

Q&A Test: Advances in Computing (non-CPU devices) 
Final Report: Advances in Computing (non-CPU devices)

19  Fiber Optic Connections within Computer Systems 

Reporters: Shahrin Imran (si1) and Sandrakasan Mugunthan (sm27) 
Supervisor: Dr. Eric Yeatman (@ic.ac.uk) 

Article 1 (si1): Fiber Optic Connections: Innovations 
Article 1 (sm27): Fiber Optic Applications in Local Area Networks 

Article 2 (si1): Multiple Channel Architecture 
Article 2 (sm27): Management of Fiber Optic Circuits 

Q&A Test: Fiber Optic Interconnections within Computer Systems 
Final Report: Fiber Optic Interconnections within Computer Systems