News

Campus Shutdown Notice

In light of the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) situation, we have decided to close our administrative offices starting Monday, March 16, 2020 until further notice.  Cory and Soda Hall are closed.  Classes are being held remotely.  All events in Cory and Soda Halls will either be cancelled or held remotely, and staff will be working remotely during this time.

Michael McCoyd uses polio history to shed light on Coronavirus vaccine in NY Times Op-Ed

CS graduate student Michael McCoyd (advisor: David Wagner) has co-authored an op-ed piece in the New York Times titled "What to Expect When a Coronavirus Vaccine Finally Arrives," which offers sobering lessons from the history of the polio vaccine. It took over 60 years from the onset of the first polio epidemic for a safe and effective vaccine to be developed and attempts to hasten the process often led to tragedy. McCoyd, who is in the Secure Computing group, says the article arose from a class he took in the J-school to learn more about fighting disinformation titled "Science Denial: Role of the Media."  When the J-school shifted focus to COVID-19 coverage, Prof. Elena Conis, an historian of vaccination, suggested story ideas for the students to pitch.  With their pitch accepted by the New York Times, McCoyd and classmate Jessie Moravek, a graduate student in environmental science, wrote what became the op-ed with Prof. Conis.

Dawn Song discusses adversarial machine learning and computer security on AI podcast

EECS alumna and Prof. Dawn Song (Ph.D. '02) appears in episode #95 of the Artificial Intelligence Podcast with Lex Fridman to discuss adversarial machine learning and computer security.   They cover topics ranging from attacks on self-driving cars to data ownership, program synthesis, and the meaning of life.

Michael Jordan awarded Honorary Doctorate from Yale

CS Prof. Michael I. Jordan, one of the world’s foremost researchers of machine learning, has been awarded an Honorary Doctorate in Engineering and Technology from Yale University.  Since 1702, honorary degrees have been the most significant recognition conferred by Yale, and signal "pioneering achievement in a field or conspicuous and exemplary contribution to the common good." Jordan's citation reads: "Facing an uncertain and complex world, you harness the power of human and machine learning to solve daunting problems. By bridging disciplines and following your curiosity, you have made possible what was once only imagined. Explorer of new domains, champion of big ideas: in recognition of the doors you have opened and the networks you have built, we proudly bestow on you this Doctor of Engineering and Technology degree."  Jordan is known for his foundational work at the interface of computer science and statistics, and for his applied work in computational biology, natural language processing, and signal processing.

Mark Hopkins appointed to Reed faculty

CS alumnus Mark Hopkins (B.A. CS '00) has been appointed to a tenure-track position in the department of Computer Science at Reed College in Oregon. He will be part of the division of Mathematical and Natural Resources where he will study uncertain reasoning and machine learning, with a particular interest in how these can be applied to computational linguistics.  Hopkins earned his Ph.D. from UCLA in 2005 and had managed Project Euclid at the Allen Institute of Artificial Intelligence (AI2) in Washington state before being hired as a visiting associate professor at Reed in 2018.

Four papers authored by EECS faculty win Test-of-Time Awards at 2020 IEEE-SP

Four papers co-authored by EECS faculty (3 of which were co-authored by Prof. Dawn Song) have won Test-of-Time awards at the IEEE Symposium on Security and Privacy today: "Efficient Authentication and Signing of Multicast Streams Over Lossy Channels," co-authored by Song (Ph.D. '02) and the late Prof. Doug Tygar (with Perrig and Canetti) in 2000, "Practical Techniques for Searches on Encrypted Data," co-authored by Song and Prof. David Wagner (with Perrig) in 2000, "Random Key Predistribution Schemes for Sensor Networks," co-authored by Song (with Chan and Perrig) in 2003, and "Outside the Closed World: On Using Machine Learning For Network Intrusion Detection" co-authored by Prof. Vern Paxson (with Sommer) in 2010.    IEEE-SP is considered the premier computer security conference and this four-fold achievement demonstrates Berkeley's preeminence in the field.

Celebrate 2020 EECS Graduates on Tuesday, May 19

The College of Engineering will be hosting a Celebration of Graduates on Tuesday, May 19, 2020.   The site will go live at 9 a.m. and visitors will be allowed to engage with the content as they wish.  The online, self-guided program is intended to acknowledge and celebrate our graduates’ accomplishments and will include recorded video remarks from the dean, department chairs and other speakers, as well as personalized slides for each graduate.   Plans for a formal graduation ceremony will be announced at a later date.  Congratulations messages to graduates posted on social media using the hashtag #becelebration2020 will appear on the celebration site.   Contact bears@berkeley.edu for more information.

EECS researchers discover ferroelectricity at the atomic scale

A team of researchers led by EE Prof. Sayeef Salahuddin and his graduate student, Suraj Cheema, have managed to grow an ultra-thin material on silicon that can power tiny electronic devices at the atomic scale.  Prior to this fundamental breakthrough, the thinnest conventional material that could demonstrate stable ferroelectricity was 3 nanometers thick.  The new ultrathin material, made of doped hafnium oxide just 1 nanometer thick (equivalent to the size of two atomic building blocks), can demonstrate even stronger ferroelectricity than material several times thicker.  This means it can efficiently power increasingly smaller devices, including memory and logic chips, batteries and sensors, with lower amounts of energy.  The findings were published in the April 22 issue of Nature.

David Patterson featured in inaugural episode of ACM ByteCast podcast

CS Prof. Emeritus David Patterson is featured in the inaugural episode of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) ByteCast podcast series, released today.  The episode also features John Hennessy who, along with Patterson, won the ACM A.M. Turing Award in 2017 for their breakthrough work in RISC microprocessor architecture.  During the interview, they share their experiences, the lessons they’ve learned, and their visions for the future of computing.  The new podcast focuses on "researchers, practitioners and innovators who are at the intersection of computing research and practice."

Andrea Goldsmith named dean of engineering at Princeton University

EECS alumna Andrea Goldsmith (B.A. ’86/M.S. ’91/Ph.D. ’94, advisor: Pravin Varaiya), who was named Berkeley EE Distinguished Alumna in 2018, has been named dean of Princeton University’s School of Engineering and Applied Science.  Goldsmith has been a professor of electrical engineering at Stanford since 1999 and is a leader in the fields of information theory and communications. She helped lay the mathematical foundations for increasing the capacity, speed and range of wireless systems, and among her 29 patents are many inventions central to cell phone and Wi-Fi networks.  Earlier this month, Goldsmith became the first woman to win the Marconi Prize, said to be the highest honor in telecommunications research.  She has also been active in efforts to increase diversity in STEM fields and is the founding chair of the IEEE Board of Directors Committee on Diversity, Inclusion and Ethics.  When she starts her tenure as dean in September, she will oversee a school comprising six departments and four research centers, including new initiatives in bioengineering, data science and robotics, among others.

Courtney Brousseau has passed away

Alumnus Courtney Brousseau (B.A. CS/Econ '19) has died after  being injured as a bystander in a drive-by shooting in the Mission District of San Francisco.  Brousseau was an active member of the Berkeley community while a student, serving as a CS tutor and acting as chair of the ASUC Student Union.  After graduation, he worked as a Civic Digital Fellow at Coding it Forward in Washington, D.C.,  and was hired as an Associate Product Manager at Twitter last fall.  He also founded an advocy group called Gay for Transit in an effort to improve conditions for bicyclists and make San Francisco streets safer.