Meet Blue, the low-cost, human-friendly robot designed for AI

Meet Blue, a new low-cost, human-friendly robot conceived and built by a team of researchers led by CS Prof. Pieter Abbeel, postdoc Stephen McKinley, and grad student David Gealy. Blue was designed to use recent advances in AI and deep reinforcement learning to master intricate human tasks, all while remaining affordable and safe enough that every artificial intelligence researcher — and eventually every home — could have one.  “AI has done a lot for existing robots, but we wanted to design a robot that is right for AI,” Abbeel said. “Existing robots are too expensive, not safe around humans and similarly not safe around themselves – if they learn through trial and error, they will easily break themselves. We wanted to create a new robot that is right for the AI age rather than for the high-precision, sub-millimeter, factory automation age.”

Two papers selected as 2018 IEEE Micro Top Picks

Two papers by EECS faculty have been named 2018 IEEE Micro Top Picks by the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Special Interest Group on Computer Architecture (SIGARCH).  The papers were "A Hardware Accelerator for Tracing Garbage Collection," co-authored by Profs. Krste Asanović and John Kubiatowicz (along with Martin Maas), and "FireSim: FPGA-Accelerated Cycle-Exact Scale-Out System Simulation in the Public Cloud," co-authored by Profs. Borivoje Nikolić, Randy Katz, Jonathan Bachrach, and Krste Asanović (along with Karandikar, Mao, Kim, Biancolin, Amid, Lee, Pemberton, Amaro, Schmidt, Chopra, Huang and Kovacs).  Top Picks represent "the most significant research papers in computer architecture based on novelty and potential for long-term impact."  The papers will be published in IEEE Micro's annual “Top Picks from the Computer Architecture Conferences” issue in May/June 2019.

4 EECS faculty and 3 alumni to participate in Fields Institute symposium celebrating work of Stephen Cook

CS Prof. Shafi Goldwasser, CS Profs. Emeriti Richard Karp,  Manuel Blum and Christos Papadimitriou, and alumni Michael Sipser (2016 CS Distinguished Alumnus, PhD '80, advisor: Manuel Blum), Scott Aaronson (CS PhD '04, advisor: Umesh Vazirani), and James Cook (CS PhD '14, advisor: Satish Rao) will all be speaking at The Fields Institute for Research in Mathematical Sciences Symposium on 50 Years of Complexity Theory: A Celebration of the Work of Stephen Cook.  The symposium, which will be held May 6-9, 2019 in Toronto, Canada, celebrates 50 years of NP-Completeness and the outstanding achievements of Stephen Cook and his remarkable influence on the field of computing.

 2019 Okawa Foundation Grant Winners
2019 Okawa Foundation Grant Winners

Raluca Popa and Moritz Hardt win 2018 Okawa Research Grants

CS Assistant Professors Raluca Popa and Moritz Hardt have won 2018 Okawa Research Foundation Grants. Okawa Research Grants are bestowed for "studies and analyses in the fields of information and telecommunications." Popa’s research interests are in secure collaborative learning. Hardt’s research interests are in machine learning in social dynamics. The award will be presented in San Francisco in the fall.

photos of Fox, Jordan, and Patterson

Profs. Armando Fox, Michael Jordan, and David Patterson win IEEE International Conference on Data Engineering (ICDE) Influential Paper Award

At the 2019  IEEE International Conference on Data Engineering (ICDE), the Influential Paper Award was won by the 2009 paper "Predicting Multiple Metrics for Queries: Better Decisions Enabled by Machine Learning" by Archana Ganapathi, Harumi A. Kuno, Umeshwar Dayal, Janet L. Wiener, Armando Fox, Michael I. Jordan, and David A. Patterson.  This paper presented a data engineering methodology that has become the foundation for using machine learning to understand system behavior, espeicially in the vital areas of database optimization and data warehousing.  After receiving her Ph.D. in Computer Science at Berkeley, Archana Ganapathi has gone on to lead data strategy and analytics at Splunk.

Alexei Efros, Anca Dragan, Ken Goldberg, and Michael Jordan to participate in TechCrunch Sessions: Robotics + AI event

CS Profs. Alexei Efros, Ken Goldberg and Michael Jordan, and Assistant Prof. Anca Dragan, will be participating in the TechCrunch (TC) Sessions: Robotics + AI 2019 event on April 18 .  The day-long event includes "on-stage, live interviews and demos with the world's leading technologists, founders and investors on robotics and AI, workshops on key topics, and focused networking."  Efros (Berkeley Artificial Intelligence Research--BAIR--Lab)and Dragan (InterACT Lab, BAIR Lab, and Center for Human-Compatible AI) are featured speakers.  Goldberg and Jordan will be part of a panel exploring "Artificial Intelligence: Minds, Economies and Systems that Learn."

Ali Ghodsi is one of the 10 coolest data science and machine learning CEOs

CS Adjunct Prof. Ali Ghodsi is on Solutions Review's list of "The 10 Coolest Data Science and Machine Learning CEOs."  Ghodsi is the CEO and co-founder of Databricks, and responsible for the growth and international​ ​expansion of the company.  He previously served as the VP of Engineering and Product​ ​Management before taking the role of CEO in January 2016.  Ghodsi is on the board of the RiseLab and  was one of the creators of the open source project Apache Spark.

Dan Garcia

Dan Garcia tops list of most frequent SIGCSE submissions

CS Teaching Prof. and alumnus Dan Garcia (M.S. '95/Ph.D. '00) has authored more submissions in the 50 year history of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Special Interest Group on Computer Science Education (SIGCSE) than anyone else.  Garcia authored 61 SIGCSE submissions accepted between 2003 and 2016 (submissions were counted from 1969 to 2018).  This count is particularly impressive since he was precluded from submitting papers in 2017 and 2018 because he was serving as program co-chair and symposium co-chair, respectively.  It also  doesn't include his 5 accepted submissions in 2019.   Berkeley ranked #3 for the highest number of accepted papers (114) and #9 for the most citations (302) in SIGCSE's history .

Nine papers make four Top 10 lists in TOPBOTS AI research rankings

9 papers co-authored by 6 EECS faculty, 13 students,  3 post docs, and 3 alumni have made it into the Top 10 research papers ranked by TOPBOTS in four categories of AI Research. TOPBOTS is the largest publication, community, and educational resource for business leaders applying AI to their enterprises.  3 papers co-authored by Sergey Levine made the #1, #3, and #9 spots in "What Are Major Reinforcement Learning Achievements & Papers From 2018?"  A paper co-authored by Moritz Hardt ranked #5 in "Top 2018 AI research papers" and #3 in  "Recent Breakthrough Research Papers In AI Ethics." A paper co-authored by Jitendra Malik ranked #7 in the Top 2018 papers and #5 in "10 Cutting Edge Research Papers In Computer Vision & Image Generation."  The #2 Top 2018 paper was co-authored by David Wagner, and a paper co-authored by Alexei Efros ranked #9 in the Computer Vision category.

Black History in EECS: Joseph Thomas Gier

Meet EE Prof. Joseph Gier (1910-1961), the first tenured black professor in the U. C. system and the first tenured black faculty member in a STEM field—and the second in any field—at a top-ranked, predominantly white university in the country.  He was also a world expert in the field of thermal and luminous radiation, particularly infrared measurement, and was considered by many at the time to be the “best laboratory instructor ever to teach in electrical engineering at Berkeley.”