Recent News & Accomplishments


Robert Kleinberg, Cornell, talks about Converting any algorithm into an incentive-compatible mechanism". Date: November 19, 2010 Time: 1:00 pm Location: CSIC 2107 Does the complexity of algorithms increase dramatically when redesigning them to account for the incentives of selfish users? The theory of algorithmic mechanism design is largely founded on the presumption that the answer is affirmative, a presumption that has been rigorously confirmed under various interpretations of the question. This is unfortunate, since it would be very convenient if there existed generic procedures to convert...  read more
Vikash Mansinghka, CTO of Navia Systems talks about Natively Probabilistic Computation: Principles, Artifacts and Applications". Date: November 15, 2010 Time: 1:00 pm Location: AV Williams 3258 Complex probabilistic models and Bayesian inference are becoming increasingly critical across science and industry, especially in large-scale data analysis. They are also central to our best computational accounts of human cognition, perception and action. However, all these efforts struggle with the infamous curse of dimensionality. Rich probabilistic models can seem hard to write and even harder to...  read more
Professor Mark D. Hill, University of Wisconsin-Madison talks about Amdahl's Law in the Multicore Era". Date: November 15, 2010 Time: 2:00 pm Location: AV Williams 2460 Over the last several decades computer architects have been phenomenally successful turning the transistor bounty provided by Moore's Law into chips with ever increasing single-threaded performance. During many of these successful years, however, many researchers paid scant attention to multiprocessor work. Now as vendors turn to multicore chips, researchers are reacting with more papers on multi-threaded systems. While this...  read more
Graham Cormode, AT&T Labs-Research talks about "Streaming Graph Computations with a Helpful Advisor". Date: November 12, 2010 Time: 1:00 pm Location: CSIC 3117 When handling large quantities of data, it is desirable to outsource the computational effort to a third party: this captures current efforts in cloud computing, but also scenarios within trusted computing systems and inter-organizational data sharing. When the third party is not fully trusted, it is necessary to give assurance that the computation has been perfomed correctly. This talk presents some recent results in designing new...  read more
Anthony Hunter, Professor of Artificial Intelligence, and Head of the Intelligent Systems Group, in the UCL Department of Computer Science talks about "Introduction to Computational Models of Argument". Date: November 10, 2010 Time: 11:00 am Location: AV Williams 3258 Computational models of argument are being developed with the aim of reflecting how human argumentation uses conflicting information to construct and analyse arguments. Argumentation involves identifying arguments and counterarguments relevant to an issue (e.g. What are the pros and cons for the safety of mobile phones for...  read more
James Pinkerton and Rafael Setra, two students from Montgomery Blair High School mentored by Prof. Bill Gasarch, are national finalist for the Siemens competition. They will compete with 5 other teams for the top prize on Dec 4, 2010. Full article: Md. student team takes top prize in Siemens STEM Competition  read more
Distinguished Lecture Series presents Andrew Odlyzko on November 8, 2010. Title: Providing Security with Insecure Systems Date: Monday November 8, 2010 Time: 4pm Location: CSIC Building, Room 1115 Network security is terrible, and we are constantly threatened with the prospect of imminent doom. Yet such warnings have been common for the last two decades. In spite of that, the situation has not gotten any better. On the other hand, there have not been any great disasters either. To understand this paradox, we need to consider not just the technology, but also the economics, sociology, and...  read more
Distinguished Lecture Series presents Andrew Myers on November 1, 2010. Title: Programming secure, composable distributed systems with a higher-level language abstraction Date: Monday November 1, 2010 Time: 4pm Location: CSIC Building, Room 1115 Computation and persistent storage are rapidly moving into the distributed domain. Yet we are offered very weak security and privacy assurance, especially as complex information systems share information across trust boundaries. Fabric aims to improve this situation by introducing a higher-level abstraction for building complex distributed information...  read more
Prof. Samir Khuller's high school student, Frederic Koehler, has been named a semi-finalist in the Siemens HS Competition.  read more
Distinguished Lecture Series presents Dan Suciu. Title: Querying Probabilistic Data Date: Monday October 18, 2010 Time: 4pm Location: CSIC Building, Room 1115 A major challenge in data management is how to manage uncertain data. Many reasons for the uncertainty exists: the data may be extracted automatically from text, it may be derived from the physical world such as RFID data, it may be integrated using fuzzy matches, or may be the result of complex stochastic models. Whatever the reason for the uncertainty, a data management system needs to offer predictable performance to queries over...  read more