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Computer science 'inter-links with other areas'
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Computer science continues to help scientists, and vice-versa, according to one industry expert.
Professor Carole Goble, a career academic in the School of Computer Science at the University of Manchester, noted that IT experts work with different scientific disciplines for mutual fun and profit.
Data-intensive science presents a number of computing research challenges, she suggested, and it is up to the profession to find solutions.
Prof Goble, formerly Professor of Computing and Information at the University of Cambridge, has had a long and distinguished career in computer science.
BCS, The Chartered Institute of IT describes her as a "pioneer" and "one of the most remarkable women in computer science".
She explained that working with scientists on challenging computational, data and knowledge intensive problems has stimulated research in computer science.
Prof Goble said that in her case, this meant distributed computing and workflows, semantic and knowledge technologies, e-infrastructure and social computing.
"Computer science has in turn contributed computational thinking and innovative techniques and technologies for the benefit of, for example, life sciences, chemistry, astronomy, social science, biodiversity, and environmental science as well as the humanities," she stated.
But the academic said operating in this "virtuous circle" is a challenge.
Empirical, systems-based, applied computer science research has to be balanced with software engineering, Prof Goble added.
"Fundamental computer science is often some way off direct, useful application," she said.
"Simple computational solutions are sometimes the smartest. Funding and publishing Multi-Inter-Trans research is really tricky."
Most importantly, understanding the social dynamics of collaboration is crucial for fostering a long-term, productive, reciprocal relationship, Prof Goble claimed.
Posted by Stephen Wilkinson
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