Course Announcement

August 25th, 2009 by David Evans

Course Description: This special topics course is a research seminar in computer security. The course will focus on active research areas in computer security, but the specific topics will be largely determined by the interests of the students.

Meetings: Tuesdays and Thursdays, 3:30-4:45pm in Thorton Hall D222.

Coordinator: David Evans

Expected Background: Students in the seminar are expected to have enough background in theory, cryptography, operating systems, security, and networks to be able to understand research papers from security conferences. Students lacking relevant background will need to supplement the seminar readings with additional material.

All students are expected to read and think about all of the assigned readings. Each student will be expected to present and lead the discussion a few times during the semester.  The other major requirement is to complete a substantial research project. See for more  details.

Format: The planned format for most seminar meetings will involve in-depth discussions of selected research papers. At the beginning of the meeting, students will be randomly selected to answer one of the core questions: (1) what problem is the work attempting to solve?, (2) what are the major contributions of the work?, (3) what is the key claimed result?. After these questions have been satisfactorily answered, the scheduled discussion leader will present
the paper and lead a discussion that goes into some technical depth on the work. For most papers, we will have a second seminar meeting that follows up on the original presentation. The student assigned to lead the second meeting is responsible for addressing unresolved questions at the first meeting, and for finding and presenting other works that
relate to original paper.

Topics: Papers may be selected from any area of active security research. Examples of possible topics include binary analysis, botnets, cloud computing, privacy-preserving systms, TPMs, and virtual machines.

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