Computer Science Research Groups

Biodiversity Informatics Group (BIG)

Director(s): Robert Morris

BIG develops frameworks for the production by naturalists, ecologists, taxonomists, teachers and others of tools for identifying and documenting biodiversity on the planet.

Computational Biology Group (CBG)

Director(s): Nurit Haspel

The computational biology group focuses on the development of novel algorithms and the application of state-of-the-art existing methodologies to solve various key problems in molecular biology, nanobiology and biochemistry. We combine biophysical and biochemical principles with algorithmic techniques, aiming to better understand protein structure and dynamics. Current research topics include modeling conformational changes in proteins, design of novel nano-structures, modeling protein-protein interactions and understanding protein folding and docking.

Data Mining Group (DMG)

Director(s): Dan Simovici

Vast amounts of data are being gathered at a very rapid rate in various fields, such as, high energy particle physics, astronomy, astrophysics, and bioinformatics. The need for efficient and high quality algorithms to mine these datasets for hidden patterns has pushed the frontiers of research in machine learning and data mining.

The Data Mining Group (DMG) at UMass Boston is investigating novel ways of exploring large datasets using diverse techniques, such as, mathematical programming, information theoretic methods, Bayesian models, and statistical and neural net based learning.

Database Applied Research Group (DARG)

Director(s): Elizabeth O'Neil , Patrick O'Neil

DARG seeks to develop advances in database technology that support commercially viable database internal and application improvements. Recent research topics include devising benchmarks and improving designs for data warehousing, isolation testing to provide guarantees of correctness at lower isolation levels, concurrency control algorithms, and bit-sliced indexes and arithmetic. A student from our group was involved with us in a prototype product named C-Store that has since been used as the basis of an industry startup named Vertica.

Distributed Software Systems Group (DSSG)


Director(s): Jun Suzuki

DSSG carries out fundamental and applied research in the area of distributed software systems. Its long-term research goal is to make distributed software systems more autonomous, scalable, adaptive, survivable and easier to develop. DSSG's research efforts address the research issues that cross the boundaries among distributed computing, software engineering and artificial intelligence.

Knowledge Discovery Laboratory (KDLab)

Director(s): Wei Ding

Knowledge Discovery Laboratory aims at the development of data analysis and data management techniques with applications to challenging problems in geosciences, astronomy, environmental sciences. Areas of research include mining discriminating patterns, discovering interesting regions of arbitrary shape and granularity, designing new classification algorithms, and developing scalable algorithms to cope with large real-world datasets.

Network Information Systems Laboratory (NISLab)


Director(s): Duc Tran

NISLab's primary mission is to perform cutting-edge research in emerging areas of computer networks and distributed systems, particularly in support of information systems that can scale with both network size and data size. NISLab also provides hands-on educational resources to students who are interested in advanced network technologies, and engages in multidisciplinary R&D collaborations with other academic units at UMass as well as other institutions and industries in the Boston area.

Visual Attention Laboratory (VALab)

Director(s): Marc Pomplun

VALab studies the attentional mechanisms underlying human vision and is particularly interested in investigating how attention is controlled for efficient performance of visual tasks. The main research paradigms are eye-movement recording and computational modeling. The findings resulting from this research are applied to the construction of computer vision systems and human-computer interfaces. More specifically, there are three main areas of research that the lab focuses on: Studying Human Eye Movements, Computational Modeling of Cognitive and Perceptual Processes, and Developing Gaze-Controlled Human-Computer Interfaces.