Recent News & Accomplishments
Alumna Aya Soffer’s game-changing success story at IBM
On February 11, 2019, 800 people gathered at San Francisco’s Yerba Buena Center for the Arts to witness an event that might have seemed like science fiction 20 years earlier: a debate between world champion debater Harish Natarajan and IBM’s Project Debater, an artificial intelligence (AI) system designed to take on complex topics and compete with humans in a live war of words. Offstage, Aya Soffer (M.S. ’92, Ph.D. ’95, computer science) watched the event unfold like a nervous parent. As vice president for AI tech at IBM, she was a leader on the team that made Project Debater a reality. “I... read more
Computer Science Lecturer received the 2021 Dean’s Outstanding Lecturer Award
When Jose Calderon found out that he was being honored with the 2021 Dean’s Outstanding Lecturer Award from the University of Maryland’s College of Computer, Mathematical, and Natural Sciences, he was shocked. “I was very flattered and very surprised. I didn’t even know I was being considered for the award,” said Calderon, a lecturer in the Department of Computer Science. The Dean’s Outstanding Lecturer Award is a special award because students nominate lecturers to receive the recognition. The award also comes with a $1,000 prize. “I’m always trying to focus on how I can improve, so to be... read more
The UMD Loop team is one of 12 teams chosen to compete in The Boring Company’s tunnel-boring competition this summer
University of Maryland computer science majors Ritwika Das, Tyler Han and Arjun Vedantham won’t have a boring summer this year. That’s because they will be testing their design, building and tunneling (aka boring) skills in The Boring Company’s “ Not-a-Boring Competition .” “We’re very excited about the competition,” said Das, software lead for UMD’s team, known as UMD Loop . “We normally focus on creating hyperloop pods, but we learned about this competition and thought it would be a great new challenge for the team to tackle.” The UMD Loop team is no stranger to competitions. The team was... read more
CS Ph.D. candidates Soheil Behnezhad and Mahsa Derakhshan met in high school, married and share parallel paths
When Soheil Behnezhad and Mahsa Derakhshan met, it was clear they shared a passion for solving difficult problems. They were 17 years old, attending a camp to compete in the 19th Iranian National Olympiad in Informatics . The two were among 40 youths selected from roughly 10,000 students across the country to participate in the camp. Eight took home gold medals, two of which went to Behnezhad and Derakhshan . Now, 11 years later, they are married and still share a passion for difficult problems. But now, they are solving difficult problems to earn their Ph.D.s in computer science at the... read more
Assistant Professor John Dickerson Part of Google Award to Promote Diversity and Fairness in AI Systems
The funding supports efforts to promote diversity and fairness in a variety of pipeline and selection problems that use artificial intelligence.
Two faculty members, one from the University of Maryland and the other from Tulane University, have received funding from Google to promote diversity and fairness in a variety of pipeline and selection problems—including hiring practices, graduate school admissions and customer acquisitions—that rely increasingly on artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms. John Dickerson , an assistant professor of computer science at the University of Maryland, and Nicholas Mattei , an assistant professor of computer science at Tulane, received a $60,000 award as part of the Google Research Scholars program... read more
More than 125 graduates visited the Iribe Center to celebrate their graduation with faculty and staff, and stop by for a photo op
On May 21, 2021 the department of computer science celebrated the graduation of the class of spring 2021 students. The event was held at the Brendan Iribe Center for Computer Science and Engineering and was attended by more than 125 graduates along with their families and friends. The graduates were congratulated by the interim department Chair, Matthias Zwicker and senior faculty including Michael Hicks, Ashok Agrawala, Dinesh Manocha, Ming Lin and Aravind Srinivasan. With a photo op, the graduates created one more memory of their time in our department. The pictures can be found h ere . The... read more
UMD, UMBC, ARL Announce $68M Cooperative Agreement to Accelerate AI, Autonomy in Complex Environments
The five-year agreement will accelerate the development and deployment of safe, effective, and resilient capabilities and technologies that work intelligently and in cooperation with each other and with human actors across multiple environments.
College Park, Md. — An interdisciplinary research team led by the University of Maryland, College Park (UMD) and in partnership with the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC) has entered into a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Army Research Laboratory (ARL) worth up to $68 million. The agreement brings together a large, diverse collaborative of researchers—leveraging the University System of Maryland’s national leadership in engineering, robotics, computer science, operations research, modeling and simulation, and cybersecurity—to drive transformational advances in artificial... read more
Ten UMD faculty break into the top 1000 scientist rankings based on their prolific research output.
On May 11, Guide2Research released its 2021 7th edition of the top scientists ranking for computer science & electronics. The rankings are geared towards acknowledging the contributions of these top researchers and recognizing them as leaders in the field of computer science and electronics. Guide2Research ranked UMD Computer Science (UMD CS) as #9 in the world and #8 in the nation. The prominence of UMD CS & ECE faculty, as measured by the citation frequency of their work, is due to the importance of their research and their capacity to communicate it. This implies that UMD students... read more
The 2021 International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA 2021) will be held both in person and online from May 30 to June 5, 2021.
University of Maryland researchers will present 15 papers at the IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation (ICRA 2021) to be held from May 30 to June 5, 2021. ICRA is the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society’s biggest conference and the premier international forum for robotics researchers to present and discuss their work. The conference will be held in a hybrid format with virtual and in-person sessions to be held at the Xi’an International Convention and Exhibition Center in Xi’an, China. University of Maryland researchers will present their work on a wide variety of topics... read more
University researchers are advancing a concept known as foveated rendering, a computational technique that uses innovative eye-tracking software to replicate natural human eye function in virtual and augmented reality.
Similar to the evolution of the cellphone—from bulky to sleek—virtual and augmented reality hardware is undergoing dramatic changes. Cumbersome VR and AR headsets are now being replaced by lighter, wireless headgear that allows users to more freely experience their real and virtual surroundings. But this new generation of immersive hardware also brings fresh challenges. Since the hardware is wireless, technological advancements are necessary to improve battery capacity. Today’s headsets are also hindered by the longstanding issue of rendering performance—that is, the quality of how a virtual... read more