AUT launches NEUlab - NZ's first advanced data science laboratory

30 Nov, 2015
AUT launches NEUlab - NZ's first advanced data science laboratory
Professor Nikola Kasabov and AUT Vice-Chancellor Derek McCormack cutting the opening ribbon at the launch of the NEULab.

New Zealand’s first advanced data science laboratory has opened at AUT.

The NEULab is part of KEDRI (Knowledge, Engineering and Discovery Resarch Institute) run by Professor Nikola Kasabov.

NeuLab will offer advanced generic data analysis techniques owned by AUT. Their plan is to make it an incubator for new research on complex data that can result in new scientific publications, new PhD studies, new technologies across applications in health, engineering, environment and business through collaborative work at AUT, nationally and internationally.

A major part of the new lab is called NeuCube- a software/hardware development environment for the creation of efficient applications using complex temporal data. Twelve current PhD students are working in the lab for data analysis, pattern recognition and predictive data modelling. That’s ranging on research using data involving climate, seismic and brain data. As well as analysing the data, NeuCube also allows for visualisation of the data so complex data can be better understood.

The crux of the lab has been worked on for the past 4-5 years. There are currently about 20 projects in the pipeline. Some of these are from students, some funded, and some are preliminary work for future projects. The timeframe for each one varies between 1 and three years.

“We are talking about unlimited data. For streaming data (that comes and goes) like seismic data, brain or climate, you can’t store it all. But you can process it and find the most important elements and causal relationships”

Some of the future work involves working with Japan looking at seismic data and earthquake and tsunami predictability.

Six international projects are already based on the NeuCube system that is part of the NeuLab.

Professor Kasabov says the lab is important for New Zealand.

“NZ needs this because we want to be leading data science and analytics world wide, rather than being at the bottom of the food chain.