Text Box: Robert Zimmer
Professor of Computing
Co-Director of Goldsmiths Digital Studios
Department of Computing; Goldsmiths, University of London; New Cross, London SE14 6NW

Email: r.zimmer@gold.ac.uk





I was born in New York City and attended the Bronx High School of Science and then studied Mathematics and Creative Writing at MIT, after which I went to Churchill College Cambridge as a Churchill Scholar, and then went to Columbia University, to finish my PhD in Automata and Category Theory as Samuel Eilenberg’s last student.

I moved back to England in 1985 to work on a project with Michael Fourman applying algebraic reasoning to hardware design. I have been here ever since.


Research Overview

I worked for several years on formal mathematical reasoning in Artificial Intelligence and in software and micro-electronic design and verification. Most of the Artificial Intelligence work was done jointly with Alan MacDonald and Rob Holte and much of it concerned definitions and applications of various notions of abstraction. The micro-electronics work was done first with Michael Fourman and that work led to the development of a formally-based CAD tool that was commercialised in the 1980’s and 1990’s. This research also led me to consider formal designs in relation to safety-critical design, something I did in part in conjunction with Tony Ambler funded by the Nuclear Industry, and partially as a consultant to Bristol University.

In 2001, I moved to Goldsmiths and started doing research related to computing in relation to art and design.  Some highlights of which are a return to thoughts of abstraction, connecting painting and computing; systems for reasoning about archiving contemporary art with Tate Modern; large-scale public artworks with Andrew Shoben of Greyworld; with Warren Neidich, a web-based artwork centred on brain function and development; systems for making reconfigurable, personalisable, digital films with BT, Cambridge University,  the BBC and others; and digital access to art and artefacts.

The last of these topics includes haptic (touch simulating and stimulating) interfaces, and these has led in turn to present research which concerns the invention, development and application of new kinds of haptic interface. This work is being done jointly with Mandeyam Srinivivasan, the Director of the Touch Lab at MIT, with whom I am presently writing a book on the Machine and Human Haptics for MIT Press.

See Research Page for information about funded research and public outputs.





Foundation  Maths


CIS331: Mathematical Models in Business