Syllabus for the course CS 5383/4365, Summer 2006

Instructor: Vladik Kreinovich, office COMP 215, email

Class time: MTWRF 1:15-2:20 pm, COMP 321

Office hours: MTWR 12:45-1:15 pm and 2:20-2:50 pm, or by appointment

Prerequisite: graduate status for CS 5383, upper level status for CS 4365

MAIN OBJECTIVES: In many areas of science and engineering, it is very important to share large-scale cyber-resources, i.e., data, services, tools, and computing capabilities. To support a seamless sharing of the large-scale cyber-resources, it is important to design and implement cyberinfrastructure. One of the main objectives of the cyberinfrastructure is to combine different data sets and different programs for integrative use and collaborative research. One of the main challenges in this integration comes from the fact that different data sets often have different ways of describing measurement accuracy (probabilistic, interval uncertainty, expert knowledge, etc.); different programs have different descriptions of program accuracy and different checking and monitoring to assure their correctness. It is therefore necessary to create a framework for automatically combining these different descriptions within the infrastructure. UTEP has been involved in pioneering efforts to create science networks--in particular, the NSF-funded GEON project that is building cyberinfrastructure for the geoscience community.

The main objective of this class is to learn how to combine different types of information assurance of data sets and programs via cyberinfrastructure. In this class, we will use our experience of solving similar problems within GEON and our theoretical results in combining different techniques.

CONTENTS. To guarantee that the results of the computation correctly describe the real-life process that our computers simulate, we must make sure:

There are many real-life applications where we need a high level of assurance such as aerospace applications where we need to guarantee, e.g., that the airplane or a spacecraft follow the desired trajectory with a given accuracy.

There exist techniques that address all four aspects of high assurance:

The class will concentrate on all these aspects of information assurance, as well as on the state-of-the-art techniques and ideas (many developed with UTEP collaboration) on how to combine different techniques and different aspects of information assurance.

PROJECTS. After a few lectures, we will discuss possible projects for this class. We will try to find projects that are related to the areas of interest of individual students.


1. Knowledge and Comprehension

a. Describe the practical need for information assurance for cyberinfrastructure.

b. Describe different aspects of information assurance.

2. Application and Analysis

a. Know and use robust techniques that enables us to design system in the presence of uncertainty and produce guaranteed results.

b. Know and use uncertainty processing techniques (statistical, interval, etc.) for processing data in the presence of uncertainty.

c. Know and use software engineering, including formal techniques, to assure that the program adequately represents the algorithm.

d. Know and use computer security techniques that help us assure that neither the data nor the programs were changed.

3. Synthesis and Evaluation

a. Combine techniques related to all aspects of information assurance, on the example of cyberinfrastructure.

MAIN SOURCE: There is no textbook, the course will be based on notes and handouts.

TESTS AND GRADES: There will be two tests and one final exam. Maximum number of points:

(smart projects with ideas that can turn into a serious scientific publication get up to 40 points).

A good project can help but it cannot completely cover possible deficiencies of knowledge as shown on the test and on the homeworks. In general, up to 80 points come from tests and home assignments. So:

STANDARDS OF CONDUCT: Students are expected to conduct themselves in a professional and courteous manner, as prescribed by the Standards of Conduct. Students may discuss programming exercises in a general way with other students, but the solutions must be done independently. Similarly, groups may discuss project assignments with other groups, but the solutions must be done by the group itself. Graded work should be unmistakably your own. You may not transcribe or copy a solution taken from another person, book, or other source, e.g., a web page). Professors are required to - and will - report academic dishonesty and any other violation of the Standards of Conduct to the Dean of Students.

DISABILITIES: If you feel you may have a disability that requires accommodation, contact the Disabled Student Services Office at 747-5148, go to Room 106 E. Union, or e-mail to