The path less travelled

by Stephen Murphy, Academic Lead – Linux Professional Institute Academy

Why changing priorities and straying from the beaten path could help reduce the risk of cyber-attack…

I am sure that you’ve noticed that the NHS (along with a large number of other worldwide organisations such as Deutsche Bahn, Telefonica and FedEx) has been hit by a targeted cyber-attack that disabled computers using the Windows XP operating system. The attack encrypted a user’s files, making them inaccessible unless a ‘ransom’ was paid to the attackers.  People have pointed the finger at out-of-date operating systems, lack of funding and poor security procedures, but are these really the underlying issues, or only failures in diagnosing a more fundamental malady in global computing?

Continue Reading

What can we learn from the NHS cyber-attack?

Ron Austin – Associate Professor

The news over the last two or three days has been full of information and some speculation about the attack on the NHS networking and PC systems. The attack has spread quickly and affected more than just the NHS. It’s become apparent that it is not targeted at the NHS. I do, however, believe it raises key issues about computer security and cyber hygiene.

Continue Reading

Guardians of the Galaxy 2: The biggest VFX movie of all time?

Johrah Al-Homied – BSc Film Technology and Visual Effects

The hype for the Visual Effects (VFX) in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (GOG 2) started with director James Gunn claiming in an interview that Ego The Living Planet was going to be the “biggest visual effect of all time”. He said the film contains over a trillion polygons, and after watching it, I can believe that’s true. Ego contains thousands of animated elements. From the water to the leaves dropping on the floor, all these details could need thousands of individual models, depending on how detailed they are, and each model could contain millions of polygons. Continue Reading

Global Game Jam at Birmingham City University

Liam Sorta – BSc Computer Games Technology 

For the last five years, Birmingham City University has opened its doors as host to the annual Global Game Jam (GGJ), a 48-hour game development event aimed at bringing those with a passion for games together to create a game from scratch. The diversity the jam promotes is indicated by its 36,000 jammers, 7,000 produced games and the involvement of 95 different countries this year alone.

Continue Reading