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Welcome to the Computer Science Society!

The Computer Science Society is the departmental society for Computer Science at the University, and we are one of the many Guild of Students and EPS Societies. For those who don’t know us, we run many events including pub nights and special meals, as well as tech events like hackathons and workshops.


The Society has had another great start to the year! We’ve held record-breaking events and many started new initiatives. We’ve even updated our online presence with our re-modelled website and monthly newsletters. This article is an introduction to who we are and summary of the last few months. If you’d like to read more about what we’re doing then please take a look at

So far this term we’ve put on 26 (26!!) different events for our members, of which we now have 272 – a new record! Welcome Week started with the usual pub night in Selly Oak and we saw almost 100 of our returning and new members at the Bristol Pear. Another annual event was our trip to Ming Moon – a Chinese Buffet Restaurant in the City Centre. For many of our new members this was their first time visiting the City Centre and we were able to celebrate the new academic year with some delicious food.


The start of term also brought the launch of the University’s new campaign, Birmingham In Action. This campaign aims to bring together the University’s charitable projects and focuses on cancer research, the environment, access to higher education, mental health and the needs of refugee families. To celebrate this launch, the University took the first ever University-wide photo. CSS took part in this photo on the Green Heart – can you spot us in our beautiful blue t-shirts?

University photo - 02.10.2019

Hackathons are one of the most important things a computer science student can get involved with. We worked with our friends at HackTheMidlands to bring one of the largest events of this kind in the country in October. HTM is an annual inclusive hackathon for all ages 14+, no matter whether you are a complete beginner or expert. Hackathons are a chance to learn new skills, build a fun and awesome project, and most importantly share what you’ve done.

Other honourable mentions from October include a Tech Talk by one of our long term speakers, Jon Kingsley. He spoke about “how to destroy your car, ruin your printer, and make your family hate you”. We also ran Local Hack Day: Learn, in conjunction with our friends at Hacking and Computing Society at Birmingham City University and Aston University’s Computer Science Society. The day was a mini-conference where we ran workshops on fun hackathon skills such as Amazon Web Services, the Javascript React framework and even Discord bots.

November brought about our greatest new project so far: Developer Student Clubs is a worldwide initiative lead by Google, whose aims are to link the learning we do at university with useful skills which are applicable in industry through workshops and tutorials. Justin kicked off this series of workshops with one on Git, the most used code version control system used in industry, and followed up with a workshop on Docker, a software deployment system using containers. We’re always looking for suggestions of what workshops we should run next so please do get in touch with us on if you have any ideas or would like to work with us.


If this wasn’t enough, we then held our largest event so far. We worked with the Qiskit team at IBM to bring a series of sessions consisting of two workshop lectures and a hackathon. Qiskit is an open-source quantum computing framework with tools for developing quantum programs. The first session was a lecture given by Dr. Miriam Backens who gave an introduction on what quantum computing is all about and outlined the basic theory in what makes quantum computers work. The second session was a workshop hosted by our Qiskit volunteers focusing on setting up the Qiskit environment in preparation for the hackathon. The final session was a 9 hour hackathon, during which we provided breakfast, lunch and dinner. The judges were impressed with the many different projects all of the teams presented at the end of the hackathon, but they were most impressed the two joint winning teams, who implemented a simple game with a quantum twist and simulated quantum gates.


Our final big event of the semester was the annual Christmas Dinner and once again we dined at the S’Oak. 88 members came together to close out and celebrate the term with some tasty food and there was some karaoke as well!


It’s been an amazing close to the decade for CSS. We’ll be back in the New Year with many great events including more from the DSC workshop series and our CSS Ball in March. As usual we’re always looking for new ideas too, so please drop us an email. And don’t forget to keep an eye out on our website and Facebook group for updates in January. We wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Happy Holidays

CSS Publicity Rep