William P. Birmingham

Professor
All FacultyComputer ScienceElectrical & Computer Engineering

Contact Information
Phone: 724-458-3794
Email: wpbirmingham@gcc.edu

William P. Birmingham

What is your educational background?

  • Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA, 1988
  • Masters in Electrical Engineering/Computer Engineering, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA, 1983
  • B.S.E.E., Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA, 1982

What are the main focuses of your research?

I am interested in developing algorithms to allow coordinated actions of distributed artificial intelligent (DAI) agents communicating over a network with latency. Latency causes traditional coordination algorithms to fail; however, today’s computing environment is becoming widely distributed with heavy reliance on networks, particularly the Internet, for distributed computation, or agents in our case. Thus, it is vitally important that robust algorithms be developed.

What specific courses or specialties do you teach?

I teach the games course sequence and the senior project sequence. I have great interest in both games and software engineering so these classes are lots of fun to teach. I particularly enjoy developing great user experiences, whether in games or in apps, and teaching students to do the same.

What is the most important piece of advice you give your students to help them succeed?

Read the textbook; seriously, read the textbook. Next, be disciplined in managing your time. In the classes I teach, we use software-process management methods that reinforce the latter with practical tools. Self-discipline is necessary for the former.

Selected Publications

Journal Articles

  • “From 2D to Consoles: A Three-Semester Computer Game Development Curriculum,” January-March 2011 issue of Computer in Education Journal. In press.
  • “Multidisciplinary Senior Design Using Software-Defined Radio,” January-March 2011 issue of Computer in Education Journal. In press.
  • “Mobile Gaming and the Zune, “ Computer in Education Journal. In press.
  • ”Guest Editorial.” AI EDAM Special Issue on Design Pedagogy: Representations and Processes, AI EDAM, 2010.

Conference Papers

  • “Mechatronic capstone project with an interdisciplinary team and an industrial partner.” In the Proceedings of the ASEE Annual Conference, 2012.
  • “Mobile gaming and the Zune.” In the Proceedings of the ASEE National Conference, 2010.
  • “Multidisciplinary senior design using software-defined radio.” In the Proceedings of ASEE National Conference, 2009.
  • “Learning style, student motivation, and active learning.” In the Proceedings of ASEE National Conference, 2009.

Book & Book Chapters

  • Automating the Design of Computer Systems: The MICON Project, Jones and Barlett, Boston, 1992.
  • “Concurrent Engineering: An Automated Design-Space Exploration Approach,” Concurrent Engineering, ed. P. Gu and A. Kusiack, Academic Press.
  • “Towards a Domain-Independent Synthesis System,” Knowledge-Aided Design, ed. M. Green, Academic Press, LTD, 1991.
  • “MICON: Automated Design of Computer Systems,” Trends in High-level Synthesis, ed. R. Camposano and W. Wolf, Kluwer Academic Press, 1991.

Selected Technical Reports & Other Publications

  • “Challenges in the Sciences: Educational Policy, the Academy and Funding for Research,“ Grove City College Center for Vision and Values 2012 Conference.
  • “Science and technology at the heart of the American Experience,“ Grove City College Center for Vision and Values 2011 Conference.

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