Cloud Computing

Module Tutor: Dell Zhang
Time: Friday evenings 6pm - 9pm (Autumn Term)
Room: Birkbeck Main Building, Malet Street (MAL) 416 414 [BBK-DCS Teaching Map]
Code: BUCI028H6 (for UG), BUCI029H7 (for PG)
Document: Module Spec (for UG), Module Spec (for PG)
Teaching Assistant: Cosmin Stamate

Facebook Group: Cloud Computing (Birkbeck)

UCL students: Please complete and submit the request form as required by the intercollegiate module procedures before the term starts. The module can accommodate at most 25 UCL students (first-come, first-served).


Jothy Rosenberg and Arthur Mateos,
The Cloud at Your Service,
Manning, 2010.
Companion Website
Dan Marinescu,
Cloud Computing: Theory and Practice,
Morgan Kaufmann, 2013.
Companion Website
eBook in the Birkbeck Library
Jimmy Lin and Chris Dyer,
Data-Intensive Text Processing with MapReduce,
Morgan and Claypool, 2010.
Free eBook
Companion Website
Code and Data
Anand Rajaraman and Jeff Ullman,
Mining of Massive Datasets,
Cambridge University Press, 2011.
Free eBook
Companion Website
Serge Abiteboul, Ioana Manolescu, Philippe Rigaux,
Marie-Christine Rousset, and Pierre Senellart,
Web Data Management ,
Cambridge University Press, 2011.
Free eBook
Companion Website
Chuck Lam,
Hadoop in Action,
Manning, 2010.
Companion Website
Code and Data
Tom White,
Hadoop: The Definitive Guide, 4th edition,
O'Reilly Media, 2015.
Companion Website
Code and Data

Resources and Tools

Amazon Web Services (AWS): AWS Educate; Amazon EC2, and Amazon EMR, etc.
Apache: Hadoop and Spark, etc.


Week Date Lecture
1 07/10/2016

Introduction to Cloud Computing
  • What is cloud computing
  • The history of cloud computing[CAYS-1.0] [CAYS-1.3] [CAYS-9.1]
  • The principles of cloud computing [CAYS-1.1]
  • The benefits of cloud computing [CAYS-1.2]
  • The economics of cloud computing [CAYS-3.1]
  • Where does the cloud (not) make sense [CAYS-3.2,3.3]

Cloud Computing Technologies and Types
2 14/10/2016
Parallel Computing and Distributed Systems
  • Parallel Computing: speed-up, parallelism, locking [CCTP-2a]
  • Distributed Systems: CAP theorem, logical clocks, snapshot algorithms, consensus protocols, RESTful APIs [WDM-14a] [CCTP-2a] [CAYS-2.1.3]
3 21/10/2016
Big Data
4 28/10/2016
MapReduce and Hadoop
5 04/11/2016
MAL 403+407
Practical Lab Class
6 11/11/2016
UCL Reading Week: No Cloud Computing Lecture for BBK and UCL Students.
Please find below the materials to read.
Selected Case Studies
Getting Started with Google App Engine (GAE)
7 18/11/2016
Developing MapReduce Programs
  • MapReduce algorithm design [DITP-3] [HIA-4,5,6,7] [HTDG-6,7,8]
8 25/11/2016
Link Analysis in the Cloud
9 02/12/2016
Data Management in the Cloud
10 09/12/2016
Information Retrieval in the Cloud
11 16/12/2016
Beyond MapReduce
[slides] [slides]
Guest Lectures (2014-2015)
Guest Lectures (2013-2014)
Guest Lectures (2012-2013)
-- Friday
6pm - 9pm
MAL 416
Revision Lecture (for UG Students)
2012-13 UG Exam Paper
2013-14 UG Exam Paper
2014-15 UG Exam Paper
2015-16 UG Exam Paper
[extra] [extra]
-- Friday
6pm - 9pm
MAL 416
Revision Lecture (for PG Students)
2012-13 PG Exam Paper
2013-14 PG Exam Paper
2014-15 PG Exam Paper
2015-16 PG Exam Paper
[extra] [extra]
-- ------------ More on Data Management in the Cloud
(Optional self-study material, excluded from assessment.)
-- ------------ Machine Learning in the Cloud
(Optional self-study material, excluded from assessment.)
-- ------------ Security of Cloud Computing
(Optional self-study material, excluded from assessment.)


Coursework: 20%

Please submit your solutions in electronic form, through the Moodle system.
Penalty for late submission (i.e., after the normal deadline):
the coursework mark will be capped at the minimum pass mark (i.e., 40% for UG students and 50% for PG students).

Examination: 80%
Past exam papers can be found at Birkbeck eLibrary.

Python Programming

Python [A Short Course for BGRS and BPSN]


Research on MapReduce (Literature)