CSE Represented at Next Week's BigData@UCSD Workshop
Nearly 500 people have registered to attend the inaugural BigData@UCSD Workshop next Monday, Nov. 25, to take place in the Rady School auditorium. Three CSE researchers passed muster with online voters for the prime 10-minute speaking slots that will be the backbone of the day-long event: Charles Elkan on "Innovation in Search Engines," Shachar Lovett on "Local Algorithms," and Mike Conley on "Themis: I/O Efficient MapReduce." Ph.D. student Conley (at left) will be talking about how Themis is a general-purpose data processing framework, which can be used to solve many types of problems while tackling the inefficiencies inherent in big data processing engines such as Hadoop. "We are actively soliciting new and exciting problems to solve with Themis," said Conley, who works in CSE's Systems and Networking group, advised by Amin Vahdat and George Porter. "In particular, we are interested in big-data problems that fall outside the realm of simple batch processing."
Prof. Charles Elkan (near right, with Shachar Lovett) will talk about making massive collections of text and other data items easier for humans to search and to understand. "We have built a new search engine that uses topic models to help users formulate complex queries without needing to know in advance which the best keywords are," said Elkan. "We also have an efficient large-scale machine learning method for assigning relevant descriptors to documents, in particular for assigning MeSH terms to biomedical documents." Elkan hopes to entertain potential "showcase" applications and software engineering talent - and funding would be "welcome." Unlike most of the other researchers tapped to give talks at BigData@UCSD, Prof. Shachar Lovett does not work with data. His work is theoretical - "developing and analyzing algorithms under worst-case assumptions" - and still at a very early stage. Local algorithms, Lovett argues, are "fundamental to our ability to quickly discover structure in huge amounts of data, with the potential of radically changing the way in which data is processed and analyzed." Visit the BigData@UCSD website.
CSE Student's Online Discount Venture
Two researchers from the San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC) who will play key roles in CSE's pending Master of Advanced Studies (MAS) program were recognized at a White House.meeting on accelerating R&D and collaborations in data-enabled science and engineering. Chaitan Baru (pictured at left) and Natasha Balac are engaged with the department as instructors for the MAS program in Data Science and Engineering. The Obama Administration held an event called Data to Knowledge to Action: Building New Partnerships, in the second week of November, highlighting centers of excellence. Baru leads the Center for Large-scale Data Systems Research (CLDS), and Balac directs the Predictive Analytics Center of Excellence (PACE).
Balac (at right) was recognized for a project she is coordinating with Clean Tech San Diego and OSIsoft. They are developing a "sustainable communities" infrastructure for downtown San Diego, in part to reduce power consumption. Chaitan Baru was invited to attend the White House event in recognition of coordinating a collaboration among industry, academia and government to develop industry-standard, application-level benchmarks to evaluate hardware and software systems for big data applications. The BigData Top100 List is a new open, community-based big data benchmarking initiative coordinated by a board of directors that includes representation from SDSC, University of Toronto, and corporations including Facebook, IBM, and Google. Read the SDSC news release.
Down to the Wire for CSE Undergrad and Kickstarter Campaign
There is only one week to go for a crowdfunding campaign onKickstarter that is highlighting the work of CSE senior Jesus Rios (at left), who spent the summer in Japan on a Pacific Rim Experiences for Undergraduates (PRIME) research internship with Japan's National Institute for Information and Communication Technology. The specific project, however, was organized by the Balboa Park Online Collaborative (BPOC), which saw the opportunity to develop the next iteration of mobile apps to be used by cultural institutions in Balboa Park. The result is the Japanese Friendship Garden Haiku Hunt - a 21st century scavenger hunt for visitors to the garden in Balboa Park with Android smart phones. The hunt is enabled by a Japanese location-sensor Wi-Fi chip, called the PlaceSticker, and the Android app developed by CSE undergraduate Rios in Japan.
Stefan Savage Honored with SIGOPS Mark Weiser Award
On Nov. 5, CSE Prof. Stefan Savage received the 2013 ACM SIGOPS Mark Weiser Award during the Symposium on Operating Systems Principles (SOSP) in Farmington, PA. "Professor Savage's work crosses the boundaries from technology challenges to public policy implications of cybersecurity," says CSE Chair Rajesh Gupta. "His work is a prime example of how computer science is catalyzing scientific advances and solving societal problems." Nominees must be less than 20 years into their careers; Savage (at right and below giving thumbs-up) earned his Ph.D. and joined CSE in 2001 - the same year as the award itself was launched to honor Mark Weiser's long career at Xerox PARC.
"Stefan Savage is, by far, the most creative person working in the hugely important fields of network security, privacy and reliability," according to materials submitted as part of his nomination.
Nominating materials credit Savage with "a collection of individually high-impact contributions that point in a single, critically important direction: analyzing Internet attacks and attackers as elements of an integrated technological, societal, and economic system, and recognizing that no one-dimensional intervention has a prayer of succeeding... Our inability to select a single 'greatest hit' does not make The Beatles a lesser band; rather, we recognize that any one of their better songs would have been sufficient to catapult a lesser band into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame." Savage's Ph.D. advisors at the University of Washington are previous winners of the Weiser Award: Brian Bershad in 2004, and Tom Anderson in 2005. "This recognition of Stefan's work underlines the department's success in identifying compelling junior talent and cultivating them to reach heights in their research careers," observed CSE's Gupta. "Stefan is also an extraordinarily pleasant colleague to work with, one who is solidly at the core of the collegial culture of this department." Savage is a member of the Systems and Networking group. Currently he is also the Director of the Center for Networked Systems (CNS) and Co-Director of the Collaborative Center for Internet Epidemiology and Defenses (CCIED). Read the full news release.
CSE Student's Online Discount Venture
Another CSE undergrad, Dexin Qi (at left) is the co-founder of a new online/mobile iPassStore, launched with a little help from marketing and engineering interns and office space in the Moxie Center for Student Entrepreneurship. The startup's first product is the Triton Pass, which so far has attracted some 3,000 Likes on iPassStore's Facebook page. It's a virtual discount card that offers UC San Diego students discounts on eateries such as Subway, Panda Express, Roma Cafe and a few others on campus. The virtual card is saved on a smart phone and shown at participating stores to receive discounts of 10% or more. Triton Pass is only at UCSD, but iPassStore recently launched Aztec Pass for students and stores on the San Diego State University campus. As it grows, iPassStore hopes to expand to other university campuses. Qi's partner in the venture is a chemical engineering major. Ford Wang. The iPassStore hopes to launch the service via Google Wallet "coming soon." Find out more about the iPassStore or visit theTriton Pass page on Facebook.
SimpleCard App for iPhone Developed by CSE Sophomore
Mobile app development led to the creation of another CSE student-run startup, Swipe Development. The undergraduate, Daniel Brim(at right), developed a service called SimpleCard, and put simply, it offers a new way for students to use flashcards. As stated on their website, "most other flashcard apps are geared toward students who are studying material that doesn't take up a lot of space on a flashcard. SimpleCard was made originally for college students who want to study lots of complicated material that can't be boiled down into a couple of sentences. It is also one of the few flashcard apps that focuses first and foremost on user experience and design, instead of providing unnecessarily bloated features." According to Brim, who is a junior majoring in computer science with a minor in business, "Studying should be straightforward and simple. Our app gets straight to the point." The flashcard app and website are targeted at students who deal with large data sets which require implementing memory recycling concepts to present the flashcards dynamically when needed. For the moment, SimpleCard is only available for the iPhone. Click here to learn more about the SimpleCard app.
CSE Grad Students Join Interdisciplinary Team at Ancient Sites in Calabria
An interdisciplinary team of Ph.D. students from UC San Diego, including two CSE Ph.D. students, visited Calabria in the boot of Italy Oct. 8-15 to participate in several excavations. But David Vanoni and Vid Petrovic (pictured deploying thermal imaging equipment) weren't using picks or shovels. Instead, they were documenting progress at each site as the excavation season came to an end. The visit coincided with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between UC San Diego's Center of Interdisciplinary Science for Art, Architecture and Archaeology (CISA3) and the Department of Archaeology and Art History of Italy's University of Calabria (UNICAL). "This is an important partnership because the two sides have interests that are closely aligned," said CISA3 Director Falko Kuester. "Calabria is the location of some of the most important archaeological finds in Europe going back many civilizations, and UC San Diego is developing technologies and new methodologies that will enhance our ability to uncover the secrets of our past." Read full news release here.
On Monday and Tuesday, Calit2 is hosting "SenseCam 2013," which brings together international experts in computational science, behavior science, human-computer interaction, health sciences, and related fields.
UC Davis postdoctoral fellow in computer science Corey Toler-Franklin will explore "Photometric Capture Techniques for Analyzing Complex Surfaces." She will focus on ways to combine advances in optical imaging and low-cost acquisition techniques to improve the efficiency and robustness for studying artifacts and biological specimens.
University of Pennsylvania professor Rahul Mangharam, in a talk about "Closing-the-Loop with Cyber-Physical Systems," will describe recent efforts in modeling for scheduling and control of closed-loop cyber-physical systems across the domains of medical devices and energy-efficient buildings.
Columbia University professor Junfeng Yang will present this Center for Networked Systems (CNS) Lecture. The topic: "Determinism Is Not Enough: Making Parallel Programs Reliable with Stable Multithreading."
UC Berkeley EECS professor Eric Paulos is a member of the Berkeley Center for New Media. His talk, "Hybrid Assemblages, Environments and Happenings," will explore his research at the intersection of computer science and design research.
CSE and Cognitive Science professor Scott Klemmer will talk about "Design at Large" in this lecture organized by Calit2's Technology Enhanced Learning (TEL) initiative. The talk is co-sponsored by the UC San Diego Education Initiative. Klemmer will talk about how design at large - at scale, embedded in real-world activities, and occasionally subversive - can be a potent and relevant research strategy.
Denver, CO... CSE Prof. Larry Smarr, director of Calit2, is in Denver Nov. 11-13 for SC13 (previously known as Supercomputing 2013). In addition to checking out the latest in high-performance computing, including a large presence for SDSC at SC13, Smarr will be introducing the winner of the ACM/IEEE Computer Society Ken Kennedy Award, Jack Dongarra of the University of Tennessee.
An interesting footnote: The first recipient of the Ken Kennedy Award, in 2009, was a former CSE professor and director of SDSC... Francine Berman, now at Rensselaer Polytechnic.
Santa Barbara, CA... Dec. 9-12, George Porter will attend the ACM 9th International Conference on Emerging Networking Experiments and Technologies (CoNEXT). He has two papers in a session called "Trains, Lanes and Autobalancing." With grad student Rishi Kapoor and CSE professors Geoff Voelker and Alex Snoeren, one paper is called "Bullet Trains: A Study of NIC Burst Behavior at Microsecond Timescales." The second paper, "FasTrak: Enabling Express Lanes in Multi-Tenant Data Centers," is co-authored with grad student Radhika Niranjan Mysore and CSE Prof. Amin Vahdat (now on leave at Google).
Have a notice about upcoming travel to conferences, etc., for the Faculty GPS column in our weekly CSENewsletter? Be sure to let us know! Email Doug Ramsey at firstname.lastname@example.org.