2005 - 2006 Programme

Programme Summary

Date Event
3 Oct 2005 BCS Career Developer
25 Oct 2005 BCS Glasgow Branch Student Night 2005
7 Nov 2005 Digital Diamonds - Connecting Local Communities
5 Dec 2005 Christmas Guest Lecture - "Making Biometric solutions work"
23 Jan 2006 The BCS/IEE Turing Lecture 2006: Lifestyle Access for the Disabled
6 Feb 2006 Software Protection: the Death of Copyright and the Rebirth of Patents
6 Mar 2006 Lessons from the WTC Attacks - Evacuation Simulation Software
1 Apr 2006 BCS Glasgow Branch Ceilidh
3 Apr 2006 Web Enabled Oil Metering Systems
8 May 2006 Agile Methods - New Approaches to Software
9 Jun 2006 BCS Glasgow Branch AGM 2006
18 Jul 2006 Introduction to Agile Software Development

Programme Detail

BCS Career Developer

Date Monday 3rd October 2005
Convenor Pat Crawford
Speaker Mike Chad (Delphis Group, East Kilbride)

All BCS members are obliged "to seek to update their professional knowledge and skill, and maintain awareness of technological developments, procedures and standards which are relevant to their field ..." (BCS Code of Professional Conduct). Until now, this has not been formally "policed" - we have been trusted to do it for ourselves. The Society is developing a specification for the Chartered Information Technology Professional Standard, which is likely to include a more formal review of members CPD records. So it is perhaps a good time for us to get these records in order !

CareerBuilder is a useful mechanism for planning, recording, and reviewing our professional development. It is available free to all members, though the BCS website. This presentation will demonstrate the CareerBuilder software and explain how to use it.

Mike Chad is a member of the Societyís Qualifications and Standards Board, and has been involved with the Societyís Professional Development programmes for 15 years. He was part of the team which constructed version 3 of the Industry Structure Model, and more recently, assisted in its transition to SFIAplus, which has aligned it to the National SFIA model (Skills Framework for the information Age). SFIAplus is at the heart of all the Societyís professional development products.


BCS Glasgow Branch Student Night 2005

Date Tuesday 25th October 2005
Time 6.00 pm
Location Vertigo, Level 8, University of Strathclyde Students Association, 90 John Street, Glasgow
Convenors Damien Debroize, Daniel Livingstone & Sean Mackay
Speaker Sarah Ewen (Sony Computer Entertainment Europe)

Sony Playstation2 This year there will be a talk by Sarah Ewen of the Sony Computer Entertainment Europe Technology Group - "The Evolution of the Playstation". This promises to be an excellent talk on various aspects of games technology.

Get information on student membership of the BCS and Glasgow Branch activities - members of the Glasgow Branch will be present to tell you more.

Win! There will be several Playstation2 game titles and USB Memory Sticks to be won on the night (prizes generously provided by Sony Computer Entertainment Europe and the BCS).

This free event starts with a buffet at 6pm, and all IT and Computing students are welcome. Don't miss this once a year event!

Map of Location

For more details contact: sean.bcs@garnethill.net or daniel.livingstone@paisley.ac.uk

Download event details & map.


Digital Diamonds - Connecting Local Communities

Date Monday 7th November 2005
Convenor Laurie Borthwick
Speaker Margaret Houston (Scottish Enterprise)

Digital Diamonds is ...

Digital Diamonds... A Scottish Executive funded project to bridge the "Digital Divide" in the Greater Pollok area. This enables volunteers to put something back into their community by making residents aware of ICT opportunities and facilities whilst simultaneously developing their own skills.

The talk will address the Digital Diamond experience thus far, and discuss the feedback from similar projects currently being established in other areas.


Christmas Guest Lecture - "Making Biometric solutions work"

Date Monday 5th December 2005
Location Rm. L13.18 Livingstone Tower, University of Strathclyde, 26 Richmond Street, Glasgow
Convenors Daniel Livingstone & Sean Mackay
Speaker Prof Angela Sasse (University College, London)

The increased need for security has furthered the case for biometrics, which is seen as a strong proof of identity. At the same time, some prospective users have doubts on the reliability of the technology, and concerns about privacy and identity theft. The lecture will examine recent proposals for biometric verification of documents (passports and ID cards) and the setting up of a National Identity Register, which would contain such information. To be successful, the technology must function reliably, offer increased convenience, and be perceived to be more secure than current forms of identification and authentication. Based on the results of recent field trials, the reliability, performance and usability of current biometric systems will be discussed. The lecture will also review problems that some individuals and user groups have encountered, and identify improvements that are required to make biometric solutions effective, usable and acceptable.

Prof. Angela Sasse is an expert of world renown. She is professor of Human centred Technology in the computing science department at University College London.

Uniquely she combines a doctorate in Computing Science with a Masters in Occupational Psychology.

More recently she was an expert adviser to the home affairs committee on ĎIdentity Cardsí and has conducted biometric systems field trials for the Federal German Government.

Donít miss this one!

*** Please note the change of venue *** Map of Location


The BCS/IEE Turing Lecture 2006: Lifestyle Access for the Disabled - adding positive drift to the random walk with technology

Date Monday 23rd January 2006
Time Refreshments from 5.30pm. Lecture commences at 6pm
Location Western Infirmary Lecture Theatre, University of Glasgow - Map of Location
Convenor Laurie Borthwick
Speaker Chris Mairs (Data Connection plc)


There is a paradoxical relationship between technology improvements and accessibility. On one hand, technology can and sometimes does help visually disabled people: synthesized access to talking newspapers, easy access to online music with speech synthesized catalogues, email reading/writing with speech synthesis, and a speech interface to hand-held GPS for blind orientation/navigation. On the other hand, the 'technology heavy' nature of 21C lifestyle often disenfranchises the disabled. Examples include microwave cookers, mobile phones, iPods and 24-bit animated graphical user interfaces. What should and can be done to improve the outcome resulting from this technological dichotomy?


Chris Mairs is a founding member and director of Data Connection plc, which develops software for international blue chip ICT companies. He created the enduring architectural blueprint for DCís thirty highly profitable communication products, directs Data Connection's product line strategy and is Chief Technical Officer of their MetaSwitch telephony subsidiary. Chris also founded the a-technic charity, developing technology for the disabled (enlightened self-interest, since he himself is blind). His Bat Blaster is used by blind water skiers throughout the world, including at four world championships where Chris led the British disabled team to victory. a-technicís focus now is information access for the vision impaired. Their free NewsReader software will soon be followed by NewsBox, a speech enabled system costing c.£300, giving the technologically frail blind access to broader content sources.

Booking details:

Available on the website at http://www.bcs.org/BCS/Awards/Events/TuringLecture/Turing2006/

(Please be aware that if you book online via The IEE website you will need to register)

Map of Location

Remember to book early to avoid disappointment!


Software Protection: the Death of Copyright and the Rebirth of Patents

Date Monday 6th February 2006
Convenor Paul Goldfinch
Speaker Prof Ian J Lloyd (University of Strathclyde)

Traditionally the UK has given a very strong form of copyright protection. Recent cases, before both the domestic and the European Courts have shown that this is no longer the case. As copyright protection wanes, so those developing software may wish to pursue more energetically the possibility of obtaining patent protection for their work.


Lessons from the WTC Attacks - Evacuation Simulation Software

Date Monday 6th March 2006
Convenor Pat Crawford
Speaker Prof Chris W. Johnson (Dept. of Computer Science, University of Glasgow)

From 9/11 to 2012: Using Interactive Computer Simulations to Plan for the Evacuation of Large Public Buildings

This talk starts with the events of 11th September 2001. The terrorist attacks on the World Trade Centre provided important lessons about the evacuations of large public buildings. Many lessons point to the benefits of computer-based evacuation simulations. Emergency personnel can use these tools to explore a range of possible scenarios without placing building occupants at risk. They can be used to model what would happen if different evacuation roots are blocked or if the number of building occupants is increased over time. 9/11 also helped to identify problems with these simulation tools. In particular, they have ignored the intervention of emergency services in an evacuation. They also failed to consider many plausible terrorist actions. This talk will demonstrate a range of evacuation simulations being developed for buildings around Glasgow ranging from a local hospital through to underground stations and one of the football grounds. Prof Johnson will also describe initial work on the 2012 Olympic venues where simulations will be developed to help police planning before the buildings are completed.


BCS Glasgow Branch Ceilidh

Date Saturday 1st April 2006
Time Convene at 6.30 pm for 7 pm dinner
Location The Piping Centre, 30-34 McPhater Street, Cowcaddens, Glasgow G4 0HW
Convenor Iain R White
Tickets are available from Paul Goldfinch or booked on line at http://www.wymilne.com/wymilne/events.asp.

Our on line ticket sales are being processed by kind permission of WY Milne Associates Ltd


Web Enabled Oil Metering Systems

Date Monday 3rd April 2006
Convenor Bill Milne
Speaker Andrew Webb (Ambrit UK Ltd)

Agile Methods - New Approaches to Software

Date Monday 8th May 2006
Convenor Eddie Gray
Speaker Clarke Ching (Agile Scotland Group)

Talk: Understanding the Software Development Paradox: Introducing Agile Software Development

The software development industry is a paradox: on the one hand software is becoming increasingly pervasive and adds huge value to society, but on the other hand, our industry remains plagued by failure. Clarke will describe how a simple misunderstanding of quality principles during the 1970's resulted in the widespread adoption of development methods - the waterfall model and it's modern equivalent the "V" model - which are simply unsuitable for product and software development work. He will describe how Agile development is based on a more appropriate quality model, how Agile works, why Agile works, and - most importantly - why Agile is hard work.

Bio: Clarke Ching

Clarke Ching is a New Zealander who now calls Scotland home. He is a passionate advocate of agile software development and is chairman of AgileScotland special interest group. He is a frequent speaker and part-time lecturer on agile methods. Clarke has an MBA specialising in Technology management and is a senior consultant with VISION Consulting. He is currently writing a "business novel" which shows how Lean, Quality and Constraints Management thinking SHOULD be applied to software and product development organisations.


AGM 2006

Date Monday 5th June 2006
Time 6.30 pm (light buffet from 6.00 pm)
Location Lord Todd Conference Room, University of Strathclyde, Weaver Street (off Collins Street), Glasgow
Chair Bill Milne
Speaker Gordon Kaye (Computer Futures)

Talk: The current state of the Scottish IT job market--opportunities and trends.

This short talk will give an independent, factual review of the current Scottish IT job market. Gordon Kaye is the Edinburgh manager for Computer futures one of the UK's biggest IT recruitment agencies, who are uniquely placed to know what is going on. There will be an opportunity to ask questions and for informal networking.


Introduction to Agile Software Development

Date Tuesday 18th July 2006
Time 9.30 am to 4.30 pm
Location Rm D147 Central McLean Building, University of Paisley, PA1 2BE
Organiser Daniel Livingstone
Registration CLOSED
Registration Fee One-day workshop, inclusive of lunch, refreshments and VAT - BCS Member £75; Non-member £150
Registration Form
Other Information Workshop Details (Word doc)
Speaker Clarke Ching (Vision Consulting)

Flexing IT to meet your business needs - An introduction to Agile Software Development

Unlike traditional approach to building software development, Agile Software Development projects maximise their cash flow and profitability by reliably delivering working products earlier and often. Agile experts argue that traditional models typically create huge amounts of rework, leading to projects taking much longer to complete and making predictable delivery virtually impossible. If software development is seen from a commercial standpoint, not just as a technical exercise, it becomes obvious that software professionals can have much more influence over the success of IT than they often realise

This interactive session will cover:

  • Why the underlying theories of traditional software development and project management are flawed.
  • Why and how Agile methods work.
  • An overview of the various Agile methods - Scrum, Extreme Programming, & DSDM.
  • A live demonstration of Test Driven Development & Pair programming.
  • Plenty of time to answer your questions.


9:30 Coffee & Registration

9:45 General introductions

10:00 Introduction to Agile approach

12:00 Lunch

1:00 Test Driven Development & Pair Programming

3:00 Interactive Introduction to Scrum

4:00 Q&A and Discussion



The session will take place at the University of Paisley, in the central McLean building, Room D147. Lunch will be served in an adjacent room (D134). A campus map is available here:

Transport & Parking

Parking is available in the High St. car park (see campus map). Quote "BCS Workshop" on arrival. Should this fill up, additional spaces should be available in the main carpark (entrance on Lady Lane). Again, quote "BCS Workshop" on arrival.The university is a short stroll from Paisley Gilmour St. train station, with regular trains from Glasgow Central - journey time approx. 10 minutes.

About the Speaker - Clarke Ching

Clarke Ching (www.clarkeching.com) is a New Zealander who now calls Scotland home. He is a passionate advocate of agile software development and is chairman of AgileScotland special interest group. He is a frequent speaker and part-time lecturer on agile methods. Clarke has an MBA specialising in Technology management and is a senior consultant with VISION Consulting. He is currently writing a "business novel" (www.rollingrocksdownhill.com) which shows how Lean, Quality and Constraints Management thinking SHOULD be applied to software and product development organisations.

About VISION Consulting

VISION (www.vision.com) has been following the principles of Agile Delivery for over 20 years. These have been applied successfully in a large number of software delivery projects, most notably in 2000 when we delivered Europe's largest Telenet bank - Intelligent Finance - in only nine months. VISION is a strategic change, business process and technology consultancy company with a strong track record of delivering strategically significant solutions for their customers.

The above Workshop information can also be downloaded here: (Word doc)

Please note this one-day workshop is a chargeable event