Virtual blacksmith simulator features on BBC Look North

A pioneering project by computer scientists at the University of Lincoln to create a virtual blacksmith simulator was featured this weekend on BBC Look North.

Led by Dr John Murray from the School of Computer Science, the project is supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund and is designed to revive the process of crafting techniques and craftsmanship for a new generation.

Together with his students, Dr Murray has created a virtual reality blacksmith’s forge so that people can experience the environment of a forge and try out the techniques for themselves using bespoke software that integrates human motion capture tracking sensors. Users can also produce their own artefact, created in the virtual reality forge, by 3D printing it as a keepsake.

Providing a 21st century take on blacksmithing, the Heritage Craft Simulation project has been developed in partnership with Chain Bridge Forge in Spalding.

BBC Look North featured the project on Sunday 18th December 2016, and the programme is now available to view on BBC iPlayer (from 03:00):

Visit the University website for more details about the project:

Enter The Telegraph’s STEM Awards

The Telegraphs UK STEM Awards have launched for their 4th year and you could be  a part of it.


The STEM Awards were set up in 2014 to highlight and reward the best undergraduate talent in our universities.

The winners of the awards can win anything from work experience to £25,000. They do this by answering one of six industry specific challenges. Each of these is set by a specific sponsor -

·  Rolls-Royce

·  Atkins

·  Semta

·  GSK

·  McLaren

·  BAE Systems

As an example, one of the six challenges is – 

Imagine it’s 2050, fossil fuels are becoming more scarce and stealth and autonomous capabilities are vital in combating a number of different threats from pirates, terrorists and rogue states. Considering all of these requirements what would an Aircraft Carrier of the future look like?

Click here to see the other challenges


Entry deadline is the 20th of Feb 2017, but if you have any questions in the mean time, email .


For more information go to 


·  @STEMawards



Lincoln computer science research papers accepted

Lincoln Centre for Autonomous Systems (L-CAS) submitted research papers to SAC 2017 and HRI 2017, and have been accepted.

The first paper to be presented at SAC 2017 is joint work with Dr Marc Hanheide‘s PhD student Peter Lightbody and Dr Tomas Krajnik on “A Versatile High-Performance Visual Fiducial Marker Detection System with Scalable Identity Encoding”.

Fiducial markers have a wide field of applications in robotics, ranging from external localisation of single robots or robotic swarms, over self-localisation in marker-augmented environments, to simplifying perception by tagging objects in a robot’s surrounding.

We propose a new family of circular markers allowing for a computationally efficient detection, identification and full 3D position estimation. A key concept of our system is the separation of the detection and identification steps, where the first step is based on a computationally efficient circular marker detection, and the identification step is based on an open-ended `necklace code’, which allows for a theoretically infinite number of individually identifiable markers.

The experimental evaluation of the system on a real robot indicates that while the proposed algorithm achieves similar accuracy to other state-of-the-art methods, it is faster by two orders of magnitude and it can detect markers from longer distances.

The second paper that has been accepted at HRI 2017, which has an acceptance rate of only 24%, is co-authored by Marc Hanheide, Denise Hebesberger, and Tomas Krajnik:
“The When, Where, and How: An Adaptive Robotic Info-Terminal for Care Home Residents – a long-term study”

Adapting to users’ intentions is a key requirement for autonomous robots in general, and in-care settings in particular. In this paper, a comprehensive long-term study of a mobile robot providing information services to residents, visitors, and staff of a care home is presented with a focus on adapting to the when and where the robot should be offering its services to best accommodate the users’ needs.

Rather than providing a fixed schedule, the presented system takes the opportunity of long-term deployment to explore the space of possibilities of interaction while concurrently exploiting the model learned to provide better services. But in order to provide effective services to users in a care home, not only the when and where are relevant, but also the way the information is provided and accessed. Hence, also the usability of the deployed system is studied specifically, in order to provide a most comprehensive overall assessment of a robotic info-terminal implementation in a care setting.

Our results back our hypotheses, (i) that learning a spatiotemporal model of users’ intentions improves efficiency and usefulness of the system, and (ii) that the specific information sought after is indeed dependent on the location the info-terminal is offered.

This is a great achievement for our PhD students and researchers, and you can keep up to date with our L-CAS research here: 


App developer part-time job opportunity in Lincoln – Apply Now

Are you looking for flexible part time work whilst you are studying? Do you think you could create an app? If so have a look at the role below. It will allow you to work from home but with contact with the team on Greetwell Road, at the end of Monks Road, Lincoln.

rilmac logo

Rilmac Scaffolding provides commercial and industrial & domestic scaffolding, combining traditional methods with imaginative solutions to complex access problems. The Company has invested heavily over the years and operates with high-quality equipment along with making full use of modern technology.

Rilmac Scaffolding is looking for a bright, initiative and highly motivated individual who can think outside the box when solving problems. What we are hoping to accomplish is an easy way to communicate with our staff and provide them with up-to-date information and then provide us with real-time information from their respective job sites.

How are we looking to achieve this?

We would like the right individual to assist Rilmac in the design of the Rilmac App. The App will have a number of functions:

  • Homepage – to navigate to forms, notice board, job sites and site survey
  • Forms page – two tabs, one to form templates and the other to signed forms (form template to show a number of forms, each with signature completion and option to save as a PDF for viewing offline)
  • Signed forms – forms with an option to view or email
  • Notice board – information from head office/news board
  • Job sites – list of current site. Manager login with the option to edit/add notes
  • QR capability (to be able to read barcodes for inspection of plant and equipment).

The App needs to be compatible with IOS, Android and desktop computers.

The Person

To succeed in the role you will need to be a knowledgeable and experienced individual within the subject matter, have excellent communication skills, a team player and to adapt to changing situations.

This opportunity would be on a part-time basis, as well as being a challenging and exciting role for the chosen candidate with a competitive salary.

Please forward a cv and cover letter to

CV’s will be considered when sent. Apply as soon as possible

University of Lincoln, UK