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Sergey Levine, Oriol Vinyals and Wei Gao named on MIT TR35

Prof. Sergey Levine, EECS alumni Oriol Vinyals and EECS postdoc Wei Gao (working with Ali Javey) have been named on MIT Technology Review’s 2016 TR35 (Innovators Under 35) who push the edge of science, creating new approaches to tackling technology challenges. In the “Pioneers” category Prof. Levine teaches robots to watch and learn from their own successes, supervising it’s own learning, and Oriol Vinyals is working to create computers that can teach themselves how to play and win complex games by enabling them to learn from experience. In the “Inventors” category, Wei Gao is building sweatbands that monitor your health on a molecular level.

Simit: a brand new language for more efficient simulations

Incoming CS Assistant Professor Jonathan Ragan-Kelley, alumnus Shoaib Kamil (Ph.D. CS 2012 under Profs. Armando Fox and Kathy Yelick) and alumnus Wojciech Matusik (B.S. EECS 1997), along with other researchers at MIT CSAIL, Adobe, U. of Toronto, Texas A&M, and U. of Texas have developed Simit,  a programming language that can speed up computer simulations 200-fold or reduce the code they require by 90 percent.

The language has applications outside simulations, and there are even plans for it to augment machine learning, data analytics, optimization and robotics in addition to a version of Google's PageRank algorithm.

Sumit Gulwani finds solutions to bridge the Digital Divide

Alumni Sumit Gulwani (CS Ph.D. 2005) is at the centre of an effort to bring the power of computer code to those who are unable to write it themselves.   Sumit's research is featured in a Financial Times article which describes how his team at Microsoft developed Flash Fill for Excel which uses "programming by example" to automatically fill in outputs without entering a formula.

Scott Aaronson answers every ridiculously big question thrown at him

EECS alumnus Scott Aaronson (Computer Science Ph.D. '04) "Answers Every Ridiculously Big Question (John Horgan) Throws at Him" in a Cross-Check interview for Scientific American.  Aaronson, an Associate Professor at MIT (soon UT Austin) and an authority on quantum computation, riffs on simulated universes, the Singularity, unified theories, P/NP, the mind-body problem, free will, why there’s something rather than nothing, and more.

Paper by David Culler, Joseph Polastre, Jason Hill Receives SIGMOD Test of Time Award

The paper by Prof. David Culler and former students Joseph Polastre and Jason Hill titled “Versatile low power media access for wireless sensor networks", in the Proceedings of the 2nd international Conference on Embedded Networked Sensor Systems has been selected as a winner of the inaugural SIGMOBILE Test of Time award for 2016. The Berkeley MAC (B-MAC) was a pioneering contribution to media access control in TinyOS-based wireless sensor networks. B-MAC and its underlying low-power listening principle became a facto standard in sensor networks. It plays a lasting role in the development of new low power wireless technologies such as IoT.

Diane Greene ranked #1 Most Powerful Female Engineer

EECS alumna Diane Greene (Computer Science M.S. ’88) was ranked #1 of 26 most powerful female engineers in 2016 by Business Insider. Greene was a co-founder of VMware that sold to EMC for $635M. She then went on to become a big angel investor while working on her new startup BeBop, which Google bought for $380M while she was on the board at Google. Greene is currently running Google’s cloud computing business and on the boards of Intuit and MIT. She is also recipient of the 2016 EECS Distinguished Alumni Award in Computer Science and will be this year's CS commencement speaker.

Gene Yang named new national ambassador for Young People’s Literature

EECS alumni Gene Luen Yang (CS B.A. '95) has been selected as the new national ambassador for Young People’s Literature. This literary ambassador program was created in 2008 “to raise national awareness of the importance of young people’s literature as it relates to literacy, education and the betterment of the lives of young people”. After graduating UC Berkeley in 1995, Yang went to work as a computer engineer for two years but came to the realization he was meant to teach. He left his job as an engineer to teach computer science at a high school. During this time he also wrote stories and began self-publishing comic books and in 2006 began winning awards and gaining notoriety for his graphic novels.

Jeffrey Forbes named Chair of the ACM Education Policy Committee

EECS alumni Jeffrey Forbes (Ph.D. ’00, advisor Prof. Stuart Russell) has been named Chair of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Education Policy Committee. Created in 2007, the ACM Education Policy Committee is a high-level committee of acclaimed computer scientists and educators dedicated to improving opportunities for quality education in computer science and computing education around the world. Prof. Forbes is an Associate Dean of the Trinity College of Arts and Sciences at Duke University and has served as Program Director for the Education and Workforce program in the National Science Foundation’s Directorate for Computer and Information Science and Engineering.