research

Connie Chang-Hasnain elected Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors

EE Prof. and alumna Constance Chang-Hasnain (M.S. '84/Ph.D. '87, adviser: John Whinnery) has been elected to the 2018 class of Fellows of the National Academy of Inventors (NAI).  Election to NAI Fellow status is the highest professional distinction accorded to academic inventors who have demonstrated a prolific spirit of innovation in creating or facilitating outstanding inventions that have made a tangible impact on quality of life, economic development and the welfare of society.  Chang-Hasnain's research interests range from semiconductor optoelectronic devices to materials and physics, with current foci on nano-photonic materials and devices for chip-scale integrated optics.  She is presently serving as Associate Dean for Strategic Alliances in the College of Engineering as well as the Chair of the Nanoscale Science and Engineering Graduate Group.

Bin Yu looks at AlphaZero

CS Prof. Bin Yu was interviewed by PBS Nova about AlphaZero, Google’s self-teaching artificial intelligence software.   The article probes whether there's more to human intelligence than can be mastered by learning how to win games--which AlphaZero can teach itself to do in a matter of hours.   The process requires a great deal of computing power and uses a lot more energy than the human brain.  Yu observes that absolute energy consumption must be considered when evaluating the software, although AlphZero is clearly very fast and flexible.   “It’s impressive that AlphaZero was able to use the same architecture for three different games,” she says.

"Mother of All Demos" 50th anniversary

On December 9, 2018, the Computer History Museum is celebrating the 50th anniversary of the famous presentation by alumnus Douglas Engelbart dubbed the "Mother of All Demos."  On December 9, 1968, Engelbart (BS ‘52/MS ‘53/Ph.D. '55, adviser: Paul Morton) demonstrated real-time human interaction with a computer for the first time.  His radical presentation introduced the world to the computer mouse, word processing, and clickable hypertext links, and became the benchmark for how entrepreneurs pitch ideas to investors.  The museum is holding an all-day symposium to honor the event.

Eli Yablonovitch wins 2019 Benjamin Franklin Medal in Electrical Engineering

EE Prof. Eli Yablonovitch has won the prestigious 2019 Benjamin Franklin Medal in Electrical Engineering.  The Franklin Institute Awards recognize outstanding achievements in science and invention.  Yablonovitch, who discovered light-trapping “photonic crystals” and developed “photonic bandgap structures” in the 1980s,  was cited "for widely-used scientific improvements to radio- and light-based technologies in wireless communications and solar energy applications."

Interview with Carmel Majidi, researcher of 'artificial skin'

EE alumnus Carmel Majidi (M.S. '04/Ph.D. '07, adviser: Ron Fearing), now an associate professor at Carnegie Mellon,  is the subject of a SiliconRepublic interview titled "Scientific research is not the only way to discover new technologies."  Majidi is attempting to create ‘artificial’ skin and soft machines inspired by the natural world. "I’m interested in building machines and robots that match the extraordinary ability of natural organisms to change shape, adapt their functionality and recover from damage. This has led me to work on new types of materials that allow sensors, electronics and actuators to share the same properties as natural skin, nervous tissue and muscle." he says.

Kim Keeton and Tom Funkhouser named ACM Fellows

Computer Science alumni Kimberly Keeton (M.S. '94/Ph.D. '99, adviser: David Patterson) and Thomas Funkhouser (M.S. '89/Ph.D. '93, adviser: Carlo Séquin) have been elected 2018 Fellows of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM).  Keeton, who works at Hewlett Packard Laboratories, was elected "For contributions to improving the dependability, manageability, and usability of storage and novel memory."  Funkhouser, of Princeton University and Google, was elected "For research contributions in computer graphics."

Sanjay Mehrotra elected Chair of SIA

Alumnus Sanjay Mehrotra (EECS B.S. '78/M.S. '80) has been elected Chair of the Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA).  The SIA is a trade association and lobbying group that represents "U.S. leadership in semiconductor manufacturing, design, and research."  Mehrotra, who is currently President and CEO of Micron, led the growth of SanDisk Corporation from start-up in 1988 to Fortune 500 company in 2016.  He holds 70 patents and has published articles on nonvolatile memory design and flash memory systems.

Krste Asanović and Peter Bartlett named ACM Fellows

CS Profs. Krste Asanović and Peter Bartlett have been named 2018 Fellows of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM).  ACM Fellows are composed of an elite group that represents less than 1% of the Association’s global membership.  Asanović was named "For contributions to computer architecture, including the open RISC-V instruction set and Agile hardware."  Bartlett was named "For contributions to the theory of machine learning."

Stuart Russell wins AAAI Feigenbaum Prize

CS Prof. Stuart Russell has the won the 2019 Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence (AAAI )Feigenbaum Prize.  Named for AI pioneer Edward Feigenbaum, the prize is awarded biennially "to recognize and encourage outstanding Artificial Intelligence research advances that are made by using experimental methods of computer science."  Russell won in recognition of his "high-impact contributions to the field of artificial intelligence through innovation and achievement in probabilistic knowledge representation, reasoning, and learning, including its application to global seismic monitoring for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty."  The award will be presented in early 2019 at the Thirty-Third Annual AAAI Conference on Artificial Intelligence (AAAI-19) in Honolulu, Hawaii.

Q&A with Raluca Ada Popa

CS Assistant Prof. Raluca Ada Popa is interviewed by TechTarget for an article titled "The future of data security threats and protection in the enterprise."  Popa is the co-founder of the RISElab as well as co-founder and CTO of PreVeil, a security startup providing enterprise end-to-end encryption for email and filing sharing.  In the Q&A, Popa discusses the future of data security and the challenges of ensuring adequate defense.