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Kai Xu

k DOT xu AT mdx DOT ac DOT uk

Research Interests and Projects



If you are thinking about a PhD, this may help: How to start a PhD. It is my experience after being both a student and supervisor.

I am currently a senior lecturer within the Interaction Design Centre in the School of Engineering and Information Sciences at the Middlesex University in London, UK. The centre is the leading group of the UK Visual Analytics Centre (UKVAC), which is backed by the US Homeland Security Department. The UKVAC includes 4 other universities: Imperial College London, University College London, Bangor University , and Swansea University. My focus is Visual Analytics research, which combines interactive visualisation techniques with analytical reasoning methods (such as machine learning and natural language processing) to understand large and complex data.

From 2009-2010, I worked briefly as a bioinformatics specialist at the Australian Phenomics Facility, which is part of the John Curtin School of Medical Research at the Australian National University in Canberra, Australia. The Australian Phenomics Facility is part of the Australian Phenomics Network, which consists of the major biomedical research centres in Australia. A large part of my work is on the Phenomics Ontology Driven Database project, and the rest of the time is for the next-generation sequencing data management prjoect at the John Curtin school.

From 2008-2009, I worked as a senior research scientist at CSIRO Tasmanian ICT Centre in Hobart, Australia. I mainly involved in a bioinformatics proejct under the Preventative Health Flagship for early detection and treatment of colorectal cancer and Alzheimer disease.

From 2004-2008, I worked as a researcher at NICTA (National Information and Communication Technology Australia), which is a CRC Centre of Excellence distributed in most major cities in Australia. I worked in the Sydney lab on the project for visualizing and analysis of large and complex network, Australia from 2004. I help developed a visualisation package GEOMI (link to the paper), which is now open source. During this period, I am also an Honorary Associate of School of Information Technologies at University of Sydney, and a member of the ARC Research Network in Enterprise Information Infrastructure (EII).

Before joining NICTA, I got my PhD in 2004 from the Data and Knowledge Engineering group of the School of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering at the University of Queensland. My thesis is on the "database support for multi-resolution visualization of large 3D terrain surface" and my supervisor was Prof. Xiaofang Zhou . Before that, I graduated from the Shanghai Jiao Tong University in 1999 with two bachelor degrees: one in computer science , the other in business.



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