Spotlight On: Dr Charles Morisett

What is your role and what does it involve?
I am a Lecturer in Security in the School of Computing, Newcastle University, involved in cyber security research and teaching at undergraduate and postgraduate levels.

How long have you been with PETRAS and what was your previous role?
I joined PETRAS with the NUSBIoT project, led by Prof. Carsten Maple at Warwick and in collaboration with Cube 2, which looked at assessing the security of the Urban Sciences Building, a new smart building at Newcastle University. There is not much work done in the area, and there are multiple aspects involved (social, cyber, physical), so it was very interesting to work with the whole team.

Tell us about a project you are working on now which is top of your to-do list?
The PETRAS demonstrator MASBI (Managing Access to Smart Building Information) is a very exciting new project, as it will establish some protocol to access rich and diverse smart building data (think sensors for CO2, humidity, temperature, light, etc), while respecting the privacy and security of the building occupants. This will be demonstrated with the Urban Sciences Building (where my office is located!).

What about the IoT attracted you to working in this area?
The idea that we can easily deploy sensors and actuators in physical spaces is particularly interesting. The barrier between users and systems is progressively blurred, which opens some new opportunities to connect users together, and to provide them with new services. Very soon my house will be able to tell me where my keys are, which will save me a lot of time!

What is your favourite album, film and novel?
Four Seasons by Vivaldi;  La Cité de la peur by Les Nuls (a comedy-cult French movie, that probably does not translate well); and Station Eleven, by Emily St. John Mandel.

Who would be your dream dinner guests?
I don’t like much formal dinners, I prefer the concept of apéro dinatoire (basically lots of small dishes), it makes it much easier to meet and talk to new people!

What advice would you give your younger self?
Learn about wine, because when you live abroad, everybody will ask you to choose the wine, since you’re French.

What would surprise people to know about you?
I have a very limited knowledge of wine!