Specialists in in big data, machine learning, human interaction and storage security add depth to department

Male faculty member looks at computer screen where female student is working

By Renae Lias Claffey

Four recently hired computer science faculty are helping to solve some of today’s most pressing challenges in the field of computer science – determining the best ways to extract information from big data sets, enhancing the security of cloud storage and personal devices and improving how robots learn and how humans learn from computers. 

Asst. Prof. Farhad Pourkamali’s research examines algorithmic and statistical aspects of large-scale data analysis and machine learning. Before joining the UMass Lowell faculty, Pourkamali held a postdoctoral position in the applied mathematics department at the University of Colorado Boulder. His latest research initiative is “Provably Correct and Efficient Algorithms for Extracting Information from Modern Data Sets.”

Building tools that will simplify programming for people who are not programmers is the area within human-computer interaction where Asst. Prof. Michelle Ichinco is making her mark. Ichinco received a bachelor’s degree from Tufts University and a Ph.D. from Washington University in St. Louis in computer science. 

Robot-learning approaches, especially as applied to autonomous robots, is Asst. Prof. Reza Ahmadzadeh’s expertise within the field of human-robot interaction. Ahmadzadeh earned a Ph.D. in robotics, cognition and interaction technologies from the University of Genoa and did postdoctoral work at the School of Interactive Computing at Georgia Institute of Technology. 

Asst. Prof. Beom Heyn Kim is an expert in computer security and system reliability. His research is solving problems involving various consistency models of distributed storage systems. His work targets both cloud and personal device security. Kim earned his bachelor’s, master’s  and Ph.D. at the University of Toronto.