University of Calgary
UofC Navigation

Stay Connected

I Need Help With...


Department of Computer Science

602 ICT Building
University of Calgary
2500 University Dr NW
Calgary, AB  Canada T2N 1N4
T. 403.220.6015
F. 403.284-4707



High School Speaker's Bureau

The Department of Computer Science at the University of Calgary is proud to launch a new Speaker’s Bureau for high schools in Calgary. As part of our outreach program, the mission of this bureau is to engage our department in the high school computer science curricula development and to share our knowledge and exciting experience in computer science with high school students. The speakers are listed below in alphabetic order of their last names. For your convenience, our faculty and staff members, as well as industry IT professionals, can deliver talks either in your classroom or on the U of C campus. If you are a high school computer science teacher and are looking for guest speakers for your class, please send the Speaker's name and your preferred time and date to our email contact address at:


John Aycock (Associate Professor)

Computer security: Any computer security topic related to computer viruses, worms, Trojan horses, spyware, spam, phishing, online fraud, zombies (the computer kind), or botnets. Also: staying safe online. I'm happy to customize the talk for your needs.

Research interests:

  • Computer security, especially things like viruses, worms, Trojan horses, spyware, spam, phishing, fraud, zombies, botnets, and anything else related to malicious software
  • Future threats and defenses against them
  • Multidisciplinary things related to computer security, including areas like art, economics, ethics, and law

Courses taught:

  • Computer Viruses and Malware
  • Spam and Spyware


Jeff Boyd (Associate Professor)

Group Interaction for Art Installations: I describe our creations of art installations that allow one or many people to interact with the installation. The talk includes a live demo of the interaction techniques that allows the audience, as a group, to try the interaction themselves.

Research interests:

  • Video Interaction with Motion Swarms
  • Cooperative Robots for Surveillance
  • Interactive Art and Swarm Art
  • Video Information Servers
  • Phase Analysis of Running Gaits
  • Binary Restoration of Thin Objects
  • Shape of Motion

Courses taught:

  • Introduction to Image Analysis and Computer Vision
  • Applications of Computing Technology for Non-Computer Scientists


Gerry Donaldson (High School Outreach Consultant)

Education Computer Science Curricula: This talk is designed for high school Computer Science teachers. I show how to design pathways of courses by integrating Alberta Education 1-Credit Courses into overlapping streams of "inhouse" courses designed by the teacher. I show how to use an Alberta Education textbook as the backbone resource in designing pathways of courses that reflect the needs of a particular school's population.

Research interests:

  • Online Instructional Technologies
  • Kinesthetic Leaning of Algorithms
  • Gender Issues in Teaching High School Computer Science
  • Blended Instruction Integrating Lab and Web Site Resources
  • Applying UML to High School Computer Science Instruction
  • Integrating the Eclipse IDE into High School Computer Science Instruction
  • Course Design of CS0, CS1 and CS2 Curricula

Courses taught: Over the years, Gerry has taught high school Computer Science using the programming languages 6502 Assembly, 8086 Assembly, HTML, Scheme, BASIC, Pascal, C/C++, and Java

Alberta Education High School courses taught:

  • Introduction to Programming (equivalent to CS1)
  • Advanced Data Structures (equivalent to CS2)

Advanced Placement (High School) courses taught:

  • AP Computer Science A level
  • AP Computer Science AB level

International Baccalaureate Certificate (High School) courses taught:

  • IB Standard Level Computer Science
  • IB Higher Level Computer Science

SAIT Polytechnic (Post Secondary) taught both on campus and virtually:

  • CPRG 215 Introduction to Java Programming
  • CPRG 225 Intermediate Java Programming


Marina Gavrilova (Associate Professor)

Computer Science Research – Create, Discover, Innovate: This talk provides interactive examples of problem solving and introduces students to some selected research areas (biometric, GIS, modeling).

Research interests:

  • Biometric
  • Information Systems
  • Security
  • Algorithms
  • Visualization
  • Optimization
  • Computational Intelligence

Courses taught:

  • Research Methodology in Computer Science
  • Biometric Technologies
  • Information Structures I/II
  • Geometric Algorithms in Geographic Information Systems and Applied Sciences
  • Foundations of Software Engineering
  • Principle of Software Engineering
  • Introduction to Computers
  • Introduction to Programming


Christian Jacob (Professor)

The LINDSAY Virtual Human Project – Excitement and Challenges: In this presentation we will introduce a cutting-edge project between a team of computer scientists and medical researchers and educators. LINDSAY Virtual Human is a 3-dimensional, interactive computer model. LINDSAY is being designed to illustrate male and female anatomy as well as physiology. LINDSAY is currently used in select Medical Education classes at the University of Calgary.

Apart from learning from and collaborating with medical educators and physicians, the LINDSAY project has many interesting challenges in the field of computer science, such as: fast and high-resolution rendering of 3D computer models; control and navigation through gesture- and video-based input (Kinect game controller); using mobile and touch-based devices (iPod touch, iPhone, iPad); graphical user interface design; cloud computing.

During our presentation we will highlight some of these aspects and explain how computer science contributes to creating such an exciting new learning tool. There will be "hands-on" opportunities to experience LINDSAY Virtual Human yourself. And, may be, we will get you excited enough to see you join our LINDSAY team — some day in the near future!

Research interests:

  • Virtual Medical Education: Computer-based Solutions for Medical Education, Virtual Human Anatomy; Virtual, Interactive Physiology; Multi-scale Modeling
  • Emergent Computing: Collective Intelligence, Swarm Intelligence, Learning & Evolution, Immune System Computing, Particle Swarm Optimization
  • Evolutionary Computing: Evolutionary & Swarm Design, Genome Programming, Genetic Programming, Genetic Algorithms
  • Computational Biology: Swarm- and Agent-based Simulation & Modeling, Grid Computing, High-Performance Computing
  • Synthetic Biology: Building, Modeling & Engineering of Biological Devices

Courses taught:

  • Introduction to Artificial Intelligence
  • Introduction to Bioinformatics
  • Emergent Computing
  • Biological Computation
  • Design, Development and Deployment of Mobile Computing Solutions ("iProgramming for Creative Minds")


Rob Kremer (Associate Professor)

AI: Can Machine Think? This talk looks at some of the historical takes on the debate over whether a computer program can be "intelligent" (whatever that means), encouraging class discussion. We then can go on to discuss various sub-areas with artificial intelligence such as learning, rule-based systems, search, planning, ability-based areas (vision, natural language recognition/generation, speech, robotics), and intelligent agents.
Time: anywhere from 15 minutes to 1.5 hours, including videos of robot soccer.

Research interests: ( research profile)

  • Agent-based Systems
  • Formal Methods
  • System Design
  • Concept Mapping
  • CSCW
  • Software Engineering

Courses taught:

  • Trends in Software Engineering
  • Object Theory
  • Managing the Software Engineering Research Process
  • Requirements Engineering
  • Design Patterns
  • Agent Communication
  • Advanced Information Systems
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Practical Software Engineering
  • Software Architecture
  • Human and Organizational Aspects of Software Engineering
  • Foundations of Software Engineering (for advanced students)


Jeff LaFrenz (Network Manager)

Software Development for Digital Surfaces: Software Development for Digital Surfaces: Digital surfaces like the Microsoft Surface Computer or the Smart Digital Table are making their way from research labs into the real world. A digital table is a computer with a multi-touch horizontal display. While PCs are mostly personal devices, digital tables enable concurrent interaction of multiple users with a single application. They form the basis for innovative software systems that support group or team activities. The presentation will give an overview on digital surfaces and then illustrate the application development challenges with two systems, eHome control and APDT. The first focuses on monitoring and controlling a smart home while the second supports distributed project planning for agile software development teams..

Courses taught:

  • Fundamentals of Project Management (BMEN 619.03)


Michael Locasto (Assistant Professor)

Machine Intelligence: My research explores methods for applying machine intelligence to a variety of security mechanisms, especially ways to make intrusion defense systems automatic, correct, and adaptive. My current work examines novel methods of encoding, analyzing, monitoring, and negotiating trustworthy execution. I'm particularly interested in the intersection of virtualization and security, methods of automated recovery from large-scale intrusions, exploring debugging patterns, and evaluating software updates and patches.

Research interests:

  • Intrusion Defense
  • Defining efficient mechanisms for enforcing security policies
  • Operating systems security
  • Trust coordination
  • Digital freedom

Topics for talks:

  • Why We Shouldn't Trust Software: An overview and discussion of where large software projects go wrong, especially when applied to social problems; risks involved in storing and processing data in digital information systems.
  • "My Favorite Top `N' Information Security Problems" (a discussion of problems that have been bugging the computer security community for the past 40 years, and are unlikely to disappear)

Courses taught:

  • Principles of Operating Systems (CPSC 457)
  • Information Systems Security Analysis (CPSC 601.29)


Anthony Tang (Assistant Professor)

Ubiquitous Collaboration: How can computation support everyday, any time, any where collaboration between people? In this talk, I will discuss how we will soon be able to leverage computation on everyday surfaces like your tables and walls to support groups that need to work together. With devices like mobile phones and tablets becoming increasingly commonplace, we are envisioning how all of these devices will work together. What we are beginning to see is that there are many new opportunities to support our everyday interactions with other people using rich data and context.

Research interests:

  • Human-Computer Interaction (designing usable interfaces for computing technology)
  • Computer-Supported Cooperative Work (exploring how computation can support collaboration, coordination, and communication)
  • Ubiquitous Computing (computation in your everyday environment)
  • Personal Informatics (collecting, visualizing and analyzing personal data)

Courses taught:

  • Collaborative Computing
  • Personal Informatics


Carey Williamson (Professor)

Internet Usage Trends: This talk highlights several recent measurement studies of Internet traffic and network application usage. We discuss emerging trends in Internet usage, including peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing applications, video sharing through Web 2.0 sites such as YouTube, and usage by mobile wireless Internet users.

Research interests: ( research profile)

  • Computer Networks
  • Computer Systems Performance Evaluation
  • Internet Traffic Measurement
  • Web Performance
  • Wireless Internet Technologies

Courses taught:

  • Computer Networks (CPSC 441)
  • Operating Systems (CPSC 457)
  • Computer Systems Performance Evaluation (CPSC 601.08)
  • Performance Issues in High Speed Networks (CPSC 641)


Blake Kanewischer ((BMgt, MBA, ISP, ITCP). Team Leader, Project Services, Process Services, Staff Development & Training The City of Calgary)

Blake is an experienced professional who provides business leadership for IT initiatives. His main areas of focus are systems and process projects. He has also worked on intranet and internet development projects, and is an Information Systems instructor at the University of Lethbridge. He holds an MBA from the Haskayne School of Business at the University of Calgary and the I.S.P. and ITCP designations from the Canadian Information Processing Society.


  • Internet/Intranets
  • Social media
  • Project management
  • Process management
  • The business of IT


Perry McKenzie ((I.S.P.). Director & Owner, Netfocus Consulting, Inc.)

Perry McKenzie has worked in the IT industry in Alberta for the past 10 years. He has been an independent IT consultant for the last 6 years and has experience in teaching and developing in VB, C#, and Java. Before working in IT, he had a career in the publishing industry which spanned 10 years in 3 countries.


  • Content Management Systems
  • Enterprise application development, support, and monitoring
  • Automated deployment, build, and configuration engineering (.Net & Java)
  • Mentoring and Training

Topics for talks:

  • Careers in IT. This talk is targeted to high school students who are even remotely curious about career opportunities in IT. We will cover technical as well as non-technical opportunities. We'll answer questions like: Why you won't get bored working in the IT field? Do I have to be a computer nerd to have a successful IT career? How easy is it to start a career in IT? What kind of opportunities are available to me once I'm in the IT field?
  • Enterprise Software development in Alberta. This talk will cover what it's like to work on large development teams in different industries in Alberta. It will look at how big teams are, how they are structured, how projects are delivered, how successful they have or haven't been. Industries covered will include Utilities, Health, Energy, Finance, and more. Topics potentially open for conversation will also include internationalization and development process.

SAIT Post Secondary Courses Taught:

  • CMPP 209 - Introduction to XML
  • CMPP 248 - Introduction to RAD Programming in VB/C#
  • CPRG 214 - Web Applications XML


Richard Tummers  ((PMP). Senior Project Manager, Shell Canada)

At work, Richard helps computer related projects in many different areas (Research, Exploration, Coal Mining, Gas Stations, Oil Refining, and the Production of Oil and Gas and Sulpher). Sometimes he leads – sometimes he follows. Richard's work has included listening to Fiber Optics, 3D visualization inside the earth, start-up of an Alberta Gas Plant, deploying global standards, agile software development, and installing a 14 ton diesel generator on the roof of a 34 floor skyscraper. He can remember working for Shell when oil cost less than $10 per barrel.

Specialization: Although Richard have worked his entire career (so far!) as a Shell employee, he has also had time to:

  • Have an awesome family living in a nice home with wonderful friends and neighbors.
  • Participate in the Project Management Institute (PMI) and the Pacific Institute of Mathematics (PIMS).
  • Work at Teleride (Transit Information), Sperry Univac (Computers), and the Government (Transportation).
  • Work on and off stage at the Calgary Stampede, Loose Moose and other Theatres.
  • Serve on the Board of Directors of a $100 million financial institution.
  • Travel to 6 continents – 4 involving business – 2 with kids.
  • Start 3 profitable (but small) home based businesses.
  • Become a licensed Fireworks Display Supervisor.

Past Talks

Date Speaker/Title High School
Nov. 21, 2013 Tony Tang, "Ubiquitous Collaboration"

William Aberhart High School Address: 3009 Morley Trail NW, Calgary, AB T2M 4G9 Contact Teacher: Gustaaf Wehnes Phone: (403) 289-2551

April 12, 2013 Rob Kremer, "Can Machines Think?"

Centennial High School Address: 55 Sun Valley Boulevard SE SE, Calgary, AB, T2X 3W7 Contact Teacher: Gustaaf Wehnes Phone: (403) 256-8140

Dec. 5, 2011 Rob Kremer, "AI: Can Machines Think?" Bishop O'Byrne High School.
Address: 3500, 333 Shawville Blvd. SE, Calgary, AB, T2Y 4H3
Contact Teacher: Laurie Odnokon-Warren
Phone: (403) 500-2103
Dec. 6, 2011 Tony Tang, "Ubiquitous Collaboration" Bishop O'Byrne High School.
Address: 3500, 333 Shawville Blvd. SE, Calgary, AB, T2Y 4H3
Contact Teacher: Laurie Odnokon-Warren
Phone: (403) 500-2103
Dec. 6, 2011 John Aycock, "Computer Security"

St. Mary's High School.
Address: Address: 111 18 Ave S.W.,
Calgary, AB T2S 0B8 Contact Teacher: Lori Michelini, C.C.D.P., Career Practitioner
Phone: (403) 500-2024

Dec 10, 2010 John Aycock gave a talk on "Computer security" Bishop O'Byrne High School.
Address: 3500, 333 Shawville Blvd. SE, Calgary, AB, T2Y 4H3
Contact Teacher: Laurie Odnokon-Warren
Phone: (403) 500-2103
Dec 8, 2010 On Dec 8, 2010 Jeff Boyd will give a talk on "Group Interaction for Art Installations" Bishop O'Byrne High School.
Address: 3500, 333 Shawville Blvd. SE, Calgary, AB,
T2Y 4H3
Contact Teacher: Laurie Odnokon-Warren
Phone: (403) 500-2103
Dec 7, 2010 Jeff Boyd will give a talk on "Group Interaction for Art Installations" Lester B. Pearson High School Address: 3020 52nd Street NE, Calgary, AB T1Y 5P4
Contact Teacher: Josh Prowse
Phone: (403) 280-6565
Dec. 2, 2010

Rob Kremer gave a talk on "AI: Can Machines Think?"

Forest Lawn High School
Address: 1304 - 44 Street S.E., Calgary, AB T2A 1M8
Contact Teacher: Larry R. Frank
Phone: (403) 272-6665
Dec. 1, 2010

John Aycock and Dan Chervenka gave a talk on "Computer security"

Sir Winston Churchill High School.
Address: 5220 Northland Drive NW, Calgary, AB T2L 2J6
Contact Teacher: Shawn Blakey
Phone: (403) 289-9241
Nov. 12, 2010

Jeff Boyd gave a talk on "Group Interaction for Art Installations"

Lord Beaverbrook High School.
Address: 9019 Fairmount Drive SE, Calgary, AB T2H 0Z4
Phone: (403) 259-5585

If you need more information about the Speakers Bureau, please email or phone The University of Calgary, Department of Computer Science at 403.220.6015