College of Information Science and Technology

Centers, Labs & Projects

Centers

Center for Collaboration Science

The issues surrounding collaboration are sufficiently complex that no single academic discipline and no single epistemological perspective can encompass them. The Center for Collaboration Science was formed in July, 2006 with funding from a UNO CBA alumnus, Steve Wild, and a grant from the University of Nebraska Foundation. Among the Center's founding members are 12 faculty members from all six colleges, who seek to bring their diversity of knowledge to bear on improving collaboration for organizations in Omaha and the nation at large.

http://collaboration.unomaha.edu/

Center for Management of Information Technology

The Center for Management of Information Technology (CMIT) is an approved Center in the University of Nebraska system. CMIT is an umbrella for several research, outreach and educational initiatives within the College of Information Science & Technology. It provides a much-needed portal to the business community through which we can all interact and exchange knowledge.

http://cmit.unomaha.edu

Nebraska University Center for Information Assurance

With the advent of the digital age come significant opportunities and challenges. As the world becomes vitally dependent on networks of computers, it at the same time becomes increasingly and dangerously vulnerable to cyber terrorism. The threats range from something as simple as the hacking of a home-based personal computer to that of shutting down a company, a power grid, a communications system, a military operation, or an entire government. In spite of the severity and immediacy of the problems, there is today an acute shortage of people and programs to meet these ever increasing, critical challenges. To this end, the College of Information Science and Technology at the University of Nebraska at Omaha and the Peter Kiewit Institute have founded the Nebraska University Center for Information Assurance, NUCIA (pronounced "new'-sha").

The University of Nebraska at Omaha has been named a Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education by the National Security Agency (NSA).

The NSA's goal for the Center of Excellence outreach program is to "reduce vulnerability in the National Information Infrastructure by promoting higher education in information assurance, and producing a growing number of professionals with IA expertise in various disciplines."

http://nucia.ist.unomaha.edu

Labs

Blackforest Cluster (Biomedical Research Infrastructure Network)

The Blackforest Computing Cluster was funded through the National Science Foundation's Biomedical Research Infrastructure Network, and is located in the College of Information Science and Technology at the University of Nebraska at Omaha. The Blackforest is one of four clusters in Nebraska funded through BRIN, each capable of utilizing the computational power of the others in times of need.

Currently the Blackforest Cluster at the University of Nebraska at Omaha consists of forty nodes, which run MPICH. MPICH is a freely available, portable implementation of MPI, the Standard for message-passing libraries. Message passing is a paradigm used widely on certain classes of parallel machines especially those with distributed memory. There is also a proprietary web interface solution we call "Nazo", and is located at http://blackforest.gds.unomaha.edu This interface allows chemical and biomedical researchers to manage their interaction with the cluster in a simple, easy to understand manner. All results are stored locally, so that researchers can retrieve any query/job run in the past. In addition, researchers can apply to house their own custom BLAST databases on the cluster, for faster searches with near real-time updatability.

The Blackforest Cluster is located at the Peter Kiewit Institute, Room 158 B.

http://blackforest.gds.unomaha.edu/

Collaborative Multi-Agent Networking Technologies and Intelligent Coordination Lab

This research lab focuses on the following major topics: multi-agent systems, swarmed robotics and game theory and computational economics.

Led by Dr. Raj Dasgupta, the research focus for the group is in developing technologies for coordinating individual resource-constrained components to behave collectively and collaboratively as a single, large-scale distributed system. A major application is controlling a team of mobile mini-robots using multi-agent algorithms. The unique contribution of this research has been to integrate market-based techniques for multi-robot coordination with swarm-based techniques for robot control.

We are currently developing technologies for coordinating individual resource-constrained components to behave collectively and collaboratively as a single, large-scale distributed system. One of our major applications is controlling a team of mobile mini-robots using multi-agent algorithms to collaboratively perform complex tasks in an unknown environment. The unique contribution of our research has been to integrate market-based techniques for multi-robot coordination with swarm-based techniques for robot control.

The Collaborative Multi-Agent Networking Technologies and Intelligent Coordination Lab is located at the Peter Kiewit Institute, Room 362.

http://prithviraj.dasgupta.googlepages.com/cmanticlabpage

Participating Students
Janyl Jumadinova
John Petersen
Ke Cheng

Data Mining Research Laboratory

The data mining research laboratory was set up by NU foundation to support research and teaching on data warehousing and data mining, and to allow students, faculty, and industry fellows to conduct application-oriented projects for analytic customer relationship management (CRM), bioinformatics and other real-world applications. The multidisciplinary nature of these projects means that the laboratory will significantly enhance the collaboration in the departments of CIST: Computer Science and Information System and Quantitative Analysis, and between CIST and other university units, such as the College of Engineering and Technology in the PKI building, the College of Business Administration at UNO, UNMC, and numerous business and industry for joint research and teaching activities in data mining.

The Data Mining Research Laboratory is located at the Peter Kiewit Institute, Room 158 K.

http://dm.ist.unomaha.edu/

Group Decision Support Lab

The Group Decision Support Lab is an active high-tech meeting room with facilities which enhance face-to-face meetings in the room, as well as computer-mediated collaborations involving participants worldwide. The lab contains presentation, display, and communication technologies which enhance the information exchange for all meeting participants. Research efforts in the Group Decision Support Lab address meeting facilitation, meeting participation, information exchange, and document collaboration.

The Group Decision Support Lab is located at the Peter Kiewit Institute, Room 279.

Information Technology for Development Cloud Computing Lab

The purpose of this lab is to develop and maintain a repository of technology-based solutions to business problems encountered by micro-enterprises.   These base solutions, ranging from simple how-to tutorials to fully configured "business in a box" servers hosted on a cloud computing (internet-based) infrastructure, will be customized to meet the needs of individual micro-enterprises. This lab contains a  cloud computing instrument contains assessment tools to enable gains in efficiency and effectiveness of micro-entrepreneurs in using IT resources to be measured.  The cloud computing instrument features “modules” of prepackaged software applications for various tasks likely to be faced by micro-enterprises. The central lab is connected to a series of mobile labs through which the researchers access the resources on the cloud to carry out their IT interventions in the field and their field research. These “Labs in the field” enable resources from the cloud to be accessed and updated while conducting interventions with micro-enterprises.

The Information Technology for Development Cloud Computing Lab is located at the Peter Kiewit Institute, Room 362.

https://itddev.ist.unomaha.edu/

Participating Faculty and Staff
Sajda Qureshi

Metaverse Lab

Metaverses are fully immersive 3-dimensional virtual worlds in which people interact as avatars with each other and with software agents, using the metaphor of the real world but without its physical limitations. The ubiquitous availability of high speed Internet access has spurred enormous interest in virtual worlds like SecondLife and World of Warcraft, both in terms of user gaming and potential as a new technological platform for global virtual collaboration. These environments allow for richer, more engaging collaboration but their capabilities have yet to be studied and explored in depth.

The lab was setup with seed funding from the NU Foundation Tech Fee grant of $20,000 with the primary goal to sustain a cross-disciplinary and collaborative effort that focuses on leveraging virtual world technology capabilities for facilitating e-learning and conducting research and development in such immersive, multi-participant 3D environments.

Students and faculty in the lab work on creative projects in collaboration with other UNO colleges while building on research already conducted under the supervision of Dr. Deepak Khazanchi and Dr. Ilze Zigurs over the past year. The overall research goal of the lab is to enhance virtual team and virtual project management practice in the context of these new technology environments.

To visit our CIST island in SecondLife showcasing some of our research and development projects, please visit this SLURL. Alternatively, you can take a tour of our CIST Island and projects on youtube.

PKI 374

Participating Faculty and Staff
Deepak Khazanchi
Ilze Zigurs

Participating Students
Andrew J Maher
Edgar Vazquez
Michael Medley
Brian Kelly

Open Source Research Lab

The Open Source Research Lab (OSRL) originates from the NSF-funded
research project, Organizational Participation in Open Communities (http://tinyurl.com/9f5ff59). With the growing use of crowd-sourcing, the interaction between self-forming communities and traditional corporations is increasing in importance. Existing research has focused on factors affecting an individual's level of participation in open sourced work and on the organization of open source efforts, but scant attention has been paid to the significant strategic organizational involvement in these endeavors (75% of Linux kernel contributions are from paid developers). As design and development evolves within open communities, there are an increasing number of ways that organizations may seek to balance 'contributions to' and 'differentiation from' an open community, for reasons of cost, resource management, and time to market. Building on principles of public sharing, collaboration, and organizational learning, the OSRL focuses on why and how organizations participate with open communities. In particular, the ORSL houses research on participation with open source communities, the advancement of open source pedagogy for computer science and information systems students, and the hosting of select open source projects. More information can be found at: http://linuxparticipation.wordpress.com/. For additional information, please contact Matt Germonprez at germonprez@gmail.com.

http://linuxparticipation.wordpress.com/

Participating Faculty and Staff
Deepak Khazanchi
Zac Fowler
Matt Germonprez

Participating Students
Garauv Gupta
Liang Cao

Security Technology Evaluation and Analysis Laboratories (STEAL)

The Nebraska University Center for Information Assurance (NUCIA) supports four labs. These are refered to as the Security Technology Evaluation and Analysis Laboratories (STEAL).

STEAL One is designed to be an open laboratory for students to use both for coursework and individual exploration. The lab is fully configurable, with many different operating systems and application sets to choose from. Our goal is to create a flexible environment that can be used to create or simulate any desired computing capability or environment.

STEAL Two has been designed to be a hands-on instructional laboratory. It has been sized to allow entire classes (max 28 participants) to collectively engage in academic Information Assurance exercises of all kinds. As with STEAL-1, the lab has been designed to be completely flexible, to allow users to simulate most any type of environment imaginable. A set of dedicated servers provides backbone services, such as DNS, DHCP, PXE, TFTP, routing, and the like. Each of these services is configurable as well, in order to allow for more accurate simulations.

STEAL Three is a place where NUCIA students, scholars, student workers, and others congregate and work. Designed as a lounging area, STEAL-3 generally has a "laid-back" atmosphere where people can relax, discuss information assurance topics, get answers to questions from faculty, and attend meetings and ad-hoc information assurance events.

STEAL Four is a virtual laboratory rather than a physical environment. It is provided as a secure, distance resource for classes, research, and various events.

STEAL One, Two, and Three are located at the Peter Kiewit Institute, Room 350, 361, and 364 respectively.

http://nucia.unomaha.edu/index.php?p=nuciaresources

STATPack: Emergency Response System for Public Health Laboratories

The STATPack (Secure Telecommunications Application Terminal) system is an Emergency Response system for the Public Health Microbiology Laboratories. The STATPack Laboratory is fully equipped to support this project. The laboratory has 3 client/production computer systems configured for production support and training, 4 developer work stations for programming and testing, and 3 development servers with version control software and server development tools for unit testing, integration testing and system testing.

The lab is located in The Peter Kiewit Institute, Room 364.

http://www.statpack.org

Participating Students
John Hobbs
Michael Kane

Wireless Infrastructure for Networks of Distributed Sensors (WINDS) Lab

The Wireless Infrastructure for Networks of Distributed Sensors (WINDS)laboratory is specifically designed to include sensor network testbeds for supporting research activities for the college and other research groups in Nebraska. The main goal of the research in this lab is to provide an innovative and comprehensive research and development program that results in solutions for high-speed wireless data network connectivity problems in rural as well as urban Nebraska. In particular, the following four objectives have been identified for the lab's research efforts.

  • Develop a wireless network laboratory with testbeds and a working prototype of a high-performance wireless data network infrastructure for supporting research, education, and services in wireless sensor networks.
  • Investigate solutions for a number of research problems in wireless sensor networks, which have inhibited complete utilization of high-speed wireless data network technology in critical applications in agriculture, transportation and bio-security in Nebraska.
  • Employ wireless networks solutions in various real-world applications.

The Wireless Infrastructure for Networks of Distributed Sensors (WINDS) Lab is located at the Peter Kiewit Institute, Room 360.

http://motes.ist.unomaha.edu

Participating Faculty and Staff
Hesham H. Ali
Jon Youn

Participating Students
Daehee Kim
Christopher Williams
Neeraj Shrestha
Nitin Sharma
Alex Vesper
Pradeep R. Korandla
Nam Pham

Projects

BioCMS

BioCMS is a prototype version of a Content Management System developed for enhancing the bioinformatics researcher experience.

This project is being undertaken by the Genetic Sequence Analysis Facility at the College of IS&T at the University of Nebraska at Omaha using WebGUI.

https://biodev.ist.unomaha.edu

Chronoscope

The objective of this project is to extract temporal information by constructing several time decompositions (time points). Now we are studying the time decomposition problem in the context of medical research abstracts. We extract temporal information pertaining to a disease or an organism by constructing several time decompositions of research abstracts and by correlating the meta-information associated with the abstracts. This experimental study will demonstrate the effectiveness of the time decomposition method on research journal articles in the medical domain.

Chronoscope is located at the Peter Kiewit Institute, Room 366.

CMJSP - Chad Meyers Japanese Study Program

This site is designed to help intermediate and advanced students of the Japanese language further develop their language skills. It works by having the user create lists of kanji or words they wish to study and then using these lists in review applets. Words can be added to lists by either directly finding words in the Dictionary, to performing queues on the database to find words that match your criteria. Once you have a list with all the words you want, go to the Review section to review it.

i3bio

Advances in medicine such as organ and bone marrow transplantation have increased the number of people who are immuno-compromised and susceptible to mycobacterial infections. Mycobacteria in general and Mycobacterium tuberculosis specifically are known as the great imitators in clinical medicine because the symptoms that they cause resemble numerous other diseases. The ability to detect and identify microbial pathogens rapidly for optimal patient management is limited by growth-based phenotypic testing methods now used in the microbiology laboratory. This limitation is of greatest challenge for the evaluation of those pathogens that grow slow, those that require specialized methods for detection and identification, and for those emerging pathogens that have become more common in current clinical practice. Organisms commonly associated within this group include, but are not limited to the Mycobacterium species and fungi.

http://i3bio.gds.unomaha.edu/

IS&T Attic

The IS&T Attic is a group of student web developers who have expertise in Web 2.0 development. We provide consulting services and development for college departments and non-profit organizations. By connecting with these organizations, developing for the Attic is a great way for students to become familiar and well-versed in web programming practices using the latest technologies.

Stemmed out of the college Lewis and Clark Project (http://www.lewisclarkandbeyond.com/), we have been producing websites using the LAMP stack, Web 2.0 frameworks, and Flash ever since.

The Attic is located on the 3rd floor of PKI, room 383. Contact us at 554-6060 for more information!

Zac Fowler
PKI 367
(402) 554-6060
zfowler [at] mail.unomaha.edu

Participating Faculty and Staff
Deepak Khazanchi
Roni Myers
Zac Fowler

Participating Students
Sundar Vaidya
Matthew Wright
Hannah Franks
Melissa Negrete
Sanjit Pandey
Brandon Iske

Motesweb

Recent advances in wireless communications and digital electronics have motivated research and development of innovative wireless systems. Particularly, following integration of sensing and communication technologies, the interest in wireless sensor networks has grown tremendously. Wireless Sensor Networks (WSN) refer to a wireless network that consist of a large number of small and inexpensive sensor devices that are equipped with limited storage and processing capabilities as well as constrained wireless communication facilities. Availability of energy-efficient and low-cost sensor nodes has made it possible to apply WSN in many interesting applications in health and medical application, environmental monitoring, agriculture, transportation, military, and homeland security areas.

http://motes.ist.unomaha.edu/moteweb/html/test/page5.php

MTAP

Automated regulatory motif detection is a fundamental problem in molecular biology. Currently, there are more than 80 different tools for identification of cis-regulatory motifs. Consequently, it is extremely difficult for the molecular biologist to know which tools are effective even on the most simple of genomes. A root cause of this is a lack of good datasets for benchmarking. Recently, Tompa et al. (2005) proposed a dataset and complementary benchmark for eukaryotes. In this work, we expand upon this study by introducing a complementary dataset and benchmark for Escherichia coli and Bacillus subtilis. Using RegulonDB and DBTBS as our true positives, we evaluated sensitivity, specificity and other important statistics for prokaryote motif detection programs. Even though this domain is less challenging than eukaryotes, our preliminary data shows that current motif detection programs still fall short of accurate detection of regulatory motifs in prokaryotes. We therefore believe that there is still a great opportunity for improvement in motif discovery methods.

http://biobase.ist.unomaha.edu

Omaha Wireless

Omaha Wireless Network is a grassroots effort proposed by a group of students at the University of Nebraska at Omaha to build a wireless Metropolitan Area Network (MAN) in Omaha, Nebraska, extend it to the rural areas of Nebraska and beyond. This is an attempt to provide free, ubiquitous wireless connectivity to the community. The goal is to build a self-sufficient wireless network that can be used for various services that may be found on the Internet: web, mail, chat, gaming and resource sharing. Such a network will not depend on the Internet for content or connectivity. Instead, it can work in conjunction with the Internet to supplement ways for one to better use connectivity. Users on this wireless network who wish to share their bandwidth may function as Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and provide access to the Internet.

http://omahawireless.unomaha.edu/index.html

STATPack (Secure Telecommunications Application Terminal Package)

The Secure Telecommunications Application Terminal Package system called STATPack allows spoke hospitals or diagnostic laboratories to send digital images of suspicious or unknown organisms electronically to a hub health laboratory for consultation. STATPack saves precious diagnostic time and eliminates the inherent risks of having the sample hand-delivered by courier to the hub laboratory.

The STATPack project is a collaborative effort among the information technology experts at the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) at the Peter Kiewit Institute and health care professionals at the University Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) and the Nebraska Public Health Laboratory (NPHL). To date, NPHL has deployed 20 STATPack systems throughout Nebraska. In addition, the Oklahoma State Department of Health Public Health Laboratory and the Kansas Department of Health and Environment Laboratory have also deployed STATPacks across their states.

The STATPack application is an emergency response system for public health laboratories. It is intended to help clinical spoke laboratories become more prepared for a bioterrorism event or other public health emergency. Emergency alerts with rich diagnostic quality laboratory specimen images and text are securely communicated among laboratory experts.

http://www.statpack.org/

Participating Faculty and Staff
Ann Fruhling

TEMPL

Technology Empowered Language Project is worked on by the Attic in the College of IS&T. The project's goal is to provide language learning while still providing culturally correct context for cultural learning as well. This project uses a combination of 3d graphic rendering for creating an authentic scene and flash for interaction (which mimics total physical response, a technique often used in second language classes). This project is also being implemented in some high school classes to further spread the use of it.

http://templ.ist.unomaha.edu/

Participating Faculty and Staff
Zac Fowler