EECS News Spring 2015
Dr. Sheila Humphreys (EECS Director Emerita of Diversity) has been named recipient of the Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics and Engineering Mentoring (PAESMEM). This award recognizes outstanding efforts of mentors in encouraging the next generation of innovators and developing a science and engineering workforce that reflects the diverse talent of America. Sheila is being recognized for her work which "improved the recruitment, retention and success of underrepresented groups in UC Berkeley's Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences" and will receive her award at a White House ceremony later this year. One of Sheila's former mentees, EECS alumnus Gary May (now Dean of the College of Engineering at GeorgiaTech) also has been named among the individuals who are receiving this award, for increasing the participation of minorities in science and engineering.
EECS Professor Emeritus Michael Stonebraker has been named recipient of the 2014 ACM A. M. Turing Award. The ACM Turing Award is widely considered the “Nobel Prize of Computing” and is named for Alan M. Turing, the British mathematician who articulated the mathematical foundation and limits of computing. Prof. Stonebraker is receiving this honor for fundamental contributions to the concepts and practices underlying modern database systems. Currently an adjunct professor at MIT, Prof. Stonebraker taught for 29 years in EECS where he and a team of researchers developed INGRES, an open-source SQL relational database management system intended to support large commercial and government applications. Ingres spawned a number of commercial database applications, including Sybase, Microsoft SQL Server, NonStop SQL and a number of others. More>>
EECS graduate student Chelsea Finn (faculty advisors Pieter Abbeel and Trevor Darrell) has been chosen to receive the IEEE-HKN Outstanding Student Award. This award recognizes outstanding scholastic excellence and high moral character, coupled with demonstrated exemplary service to classmates, university, community and country. Chelsea was nominated by faculty at MIT where she completed her undergraduate work. Chelsea’s research interests are in computer vision and reinforcement learning for robotics, essentially helping robots learn to see and operate in the real world.
The work of Michel Maharbiz’ research group in conjuction with Nanyang Technological University in Singapore is featured in a UC Berkeley News Center article titled “ Cyborg beetle research allows free-flight study of insects”. By strapping tiny computers and wireless radios onto the backs of giant flower beetles and recording neuromuscular data as the bugs flew untethered, scientists determined that a muscle known for controlling the folding of wings was also critical to steering. The researchers then used that information to improve the precision of the beetles’ remote-controlled turns.
Two EECS alumni have been chosen to receive distinguished alumni awards by the Cal Alumni Association (CAA). Steve Wozniak, (B.S. EE, ‘86) has been named 2015 Alumnus of the Year. He helped shape the computing industry with the design of Apple’s first line of products, co-founding Apple Computer Inc. with Steve Jobs. In 1987, Wozniak founded a new venture, CL 9, which developed and brought to market the first programmable universal remote control, and in 2001, he started Wheels of Zeus (WoZ) to create wireless GPS technology. A Builder of Berkeley, Wozniak has contributed in excess of $1 million to the University over the past 25 years, making a significant investment in technology and innovation at UC Berkeley. Yoky Matsuoka, (B.S. EECS ‘93) has been honored for Excellence in Achievement. After receiving her Ph.D. from MIT in EECS, she became a professor at Carnegie Mellon and later the University of Washington. In 2009 she joined Google [x] as one of 3 founding members, then accepted a position at Nest as V.P. of technology. Currently Yoky is V.P. of Technology and Analytics at Twitter. More>>
The research work of Connie Chang-Hasnain was featured in an article in the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) online journal titled “ New film changes colors when you stretch it”. Technology researchers often look to nature for solutions to challenges they face. Studying the way chameleons change the color of their skin, Prof. Chang-Hasnain’s research group has developed an ultra-thin film that changes color when pulled or twisted. Future applications could include a new class of energy-efficient full-color displays or enabling the films to work as sensors, revealing structural changes in bridges, buildings and even the wings of an aircraft where shifting colors could signal dangerous wear and tear.
Undergraduate EECS student Sahaana Suri was named a finalist for this year's Computing Research Association (CRA) Outstanding Undergraduate Researcher Award. This award recognizes undergraduate students in North American universities who show outstanding research potential in an area of computing research. Sahaana was selected for her contributions to Professor Anant Sahai's research into understanding how to make a wireless protocol for ultra-reliable communication at very low latencies in the service of high-performance Internet Of Things.
Vern Paxson has been selected to receive the IEEE Internet Award. This award recognizes exceptional contributions to the advancement of Internet technology for network architecture, mobility, and/or end-use applications. Prof. Paxson is receiving this award for seminal contributions to the field of Internet measurement, including security and network data analysis, and for distinguished leadership in and service to the Internet community by providing open-access data and tools.
Vivek Subramanian has been selected to receive the IEEE Kiyo Tomiyasu Award. This award recognizes outstanding early to mid-career contributions to technologies holding the promise of innovative applications. Prof. Subramanian is receiving this award for contributions to nano-materials, devices, circuits, and CAD, enabling low-power and low-cost electronics.
Dan Garcia and Steve Wozniak gave presentations at TEDxBerkeley, a gathering of world-leading thinkers, makers and doers at UC Berkeley discussing “Wisdom.Compassion.Connection”. TED is a nonprofit organization that started 25 years ago and is devoted to <i>Ideas Worth Spreading</i>. Talks are made available for free at TED.com.
Trevor Darrell is in an interview titled “ Deep Learning” on the BBC World Service’s The Forum. Prof. Darrell research focuses on computer vision and advances in the use of Deep Learning algorithms in robots and drones. He and his team develop algorithms for large-scale perceptual learning, including object and activity recognition and detection, for a variety of applications including multimodal interaction with robots and mobile devices.
Avideh Zakhor’s research on 3-D modeling through infra-red imaging was featured in Voice of America titled, “ New Tool Maps Buildings' Energy Efficiency”. Voice of America is the official external broadcast institution of the U.S. federal government. While participating at the ARPA-E Energy Innovation summit Prof. Zakhor was visited by journalist George Putic, science and technology reporter for Voice of America.
Professors Emeriti Andrew Neureuther and William Oldham were honored with a Special Award for Career-Long Contributions to the Art and Science of Lithography at the 40th anniversary of the SPIE Advanced Lithography Symposium. Particular attention was paid to papers published by the two in 1979 and 1980 introducing the SAMPLE process simulator, calling the work "a defining moment, when lithography moved from art to become science." More>>
Ana Arias and Laura Waller have been selected for the 2014-15 Bakar Fellows Program. This program supports innovative research by early career faculty at UC Berkeley that holds commercial promise and is designed to build a strong network that assists researchers in introducing their discoveries to the market. Prof. Arias’ research focuses on customizing hardware for Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI). Prof. Waller’s project focuses on developing new methods of quantitative phase imaging, for applications in biological microscopy and semiconductor lithography.
Several women affiliated with UC Berkeley are named in the Businessinsider.com list of “ 54 women who rocked the tech world”. Included on the list are Professors Ruzena Bajcsy and Susan Graham, Valerie Taylor (Ph.D. in EECS), Shafrira Goldwasser (M.S. and Ph.D. in CS), Deborah Estrin (B.S., UCB) and Barbara Liskov (B.A. in Math from UCB) and are widely recognized for their contributions to the field of computing.
It is with profound regret that we mark the passing of Professor Gaetano Borriello, a distinguished alumnus of the UC Berkeley EECS Department, died of colon cancer on February 1, 2015. Prof. Borriello was Randy Katz’ first Ph.D. student, graduating in 1988 and immediately becoming a faculty member at the University of Washington, where he was the Jerre D. Noe Chair of CSE. His career began in the areas of integrated circuits for networking, automatic synthesis of digital circuits, reconfigurable hardware, and embedded systems development tools. In 2001, he took a two year leave from UW to found Intel Research Laboratory in Seattle. As Director of Intel Research Seattle, he set in motion projects in elder care (sensor-rich homes and wearable devices)and in location-aware computing using Wi-Fi to enhance indoor location sensing, now used by Apple, Google, Microsoft, and others. More recently, he was directing his efforts toward applying mobile technologies to the problems of public health and development in low-resource settings. His group's open-source mobile data collection tools, Open Data Kit, are in use on six continents in programs ranging across public health, documentation of human rights violations, and environmental monitoring. The University of Washington has established an endowed fellowship for students whose work is focused on exploring how technology can improve the lives of underserved populations: the Gaetano Borriello Endowed Fellowship for Change.
Ali Javey has been selected as one of two recipients of the Materials Research Society (MRS) Outstanding Young Investigator Award. This award recognizes exceptional, interdisciplinary scientific work in the field of materials science by a young scientist or engineer who also shows excellent promise as a developing leader in the materials research community. Prof. Javey was chosen from a large group of extraordinary nominees “for innovative contributions in integrating nanomaterials into device applications.”
Alberto Sangiovanni-Vincentelli traveled to University College Cork in Ireland to help UCC celebrate its own special anniversary, the bicentenary of George Boole (1815-64) first professor of mathematics at UCC and forefather of the information age. Prof. Sangiovanni-Vincentelli gave the George Boole 200 Inaugural Lectures with Prof. Muffy Calder from the University of Glasgow, Scotland. More>>
Benjamin Recht has been named the 2015 recipient of the National Academy of Sciences William O. Baker Award in the field of statistics and machine learning. This award is given to "recognize innovative young scientists and to encourage research likely to lead toward new capabilities for human benefit." Prof. Recht is receiving this award for his significant contributions to the field of data science, an area of research that combines statistics (the analysis of large amounts of numerical data), computer science, and mathematics. More>>
EECS alumnus Jyuo-Min Shyu, Ph.D. ’88 (advisor Prof. Alberto Sangiovanni-Vincentelli) has been appointed the Minister of Science and Technology in Taiwan. Dr. Shyu was formerly president of the Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI) in Taiwan. More>>
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