Home Development NICTA backs Monash optimisation lab

A new computing lab at Monash University's Caulfield campus will focus on optimisation.

A team of between 15 and 20 computer scientists and engineers will work at the new NICTA laboratory at Monash University's Caulfield campus with the goal of enabling non-experts to use optimisation tools.

Optimisation techniques are used to address problems that involve objectives, such as minimising cost or maximising production, and constraints such as limitations on the supply of materials, or on the number and pattern of hours that each employee can work.

Examples can be found in human resources, production, distribution, purchasing, and health.

The difficulty is that as the systems being optimised become more complex so do the tools, which prevents their widespread use, particularly by non-specialists.

NICTA project leader Peter Stuckey said "We want to help Australian businesses by making this technology much easier to use so that more people can take advantage of it."

The Dean of the Faculty of Information Technology and the Faculty of Engineering, Frieder Seible, said "This new lab will help build Monash's reputation as a university developing world-class capability in research areas that will help make our local businesses and the State of Victoria more productive.

"The NICTA partnership will also attract graduate students in an area which is rapidly transforming industry. Having the opportunity to be taught by, or be part of, a 'world's best' team will be a very strong incentive to talented students."

Image: Building H, Monash University Caulfield Campus; Natebailey 2009 (resized) (Free Art Licence) via Wikimedia Commons


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Stephen Withers

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Stephen Withers is one of Australia¹s most experienced IT journalists, having begun his career in the days of 8-bit 'microcomputers'. He covers the gamut from gadgets to enterprise systems. In previous lives he has been an academic, a systems programmer, an IT support manager, and an online services manager. Stephen holds an honours degree in Management Sciences and a PhD in Industrial and Business Studies.


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