Recent News & Accomplishments

From Data Analytics to Models: Developing New Tools to Combat COVID-19 through Computing


Symposium will be held virtually
On Thursday, May 28th, 2020, the Human Computer Interaction Lab (HCIL) at the University of Maryland will be celebrating its 37 years of transforming the experience people have with new technologies by hosting a Virtual HCIL Symposium. Part of that symposium features the Human-Centered AI: Reliable, Safe & Trustworthy (HCAI) workshop , which will highlight HCIL members and colleagues’ dedicated and innovative human-centered AI technologies research. From understanding user needs, to developing and evaluating those technologies, the lab’s faculty, staff, and students have been leading the...  read more
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Computer Science sophomore Mia Bennett has been selected to receive the prestigious U.S. Department of State's Foreign Affairs Information Technology Fellowship (FAIT). Following a highly competitive application process, Bennett is one of only 15 students nationwide to be selected for this esteemed fellowship. Born in Japan, Benett moved to the US around the age of 7. She discovered her curiosity for different cultures and a passion to travel at a very young age. A graduate from James H. Blake High School Benett's first encounter with computer science began in high school with an elective...  read more
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Assistant Professor Dave Levin receives the National Science Foundation (NSF) CAREER award for a project titled "Automatically Learning to Evade Internet Censorship". The funded project focuses on automating the discovery of censorship evasion techniques, developing new ways to measure censorship, and scaling up undergrad research. “The Internet provides an open platform for communication, diplomacy, and education. But this is challenged by censorship of Internet traffic, details of which are typically not made publicly known”, said Levin. “For decades, security researchers have engaged in...  read more
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Computer Science senior Krithika Ramanathan has been awarded the 2020-21 Fulbright Scholarship. She will serve as an English Teaching Assistant in Sri Lanka. “ My interest in education began slightly before joining UMD”, said Ramanathan. “I volunteered at a school in India in developing curriculum and leading classroom activities to help with underserved communities”. A National Merit and AP Scholar from Thomas S. Wootton High School, Ramaanthan’s interests have always been at the intersection of Computing and Education. Ramanathan began her passion for teaching as a summer outreach...  read more
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Paul Chrisman Iribe Professor Dinesh Manocha receives the 2020 Pierre Bézier Award in recognition of his technically significant and lasting contributions in Solid, Geometric and Physical Modeling and their Applications. In addition to being a professor in Computer science, Manocha holds joint appointments in the Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering and UMIACS. He is also affiliated with Maryland Robotics Center and Institute for Systems Research . The Pierre Bézier award, modeled after the Association of Computing Machinery’s A.M. Turing Award was established in 2007 in the...  read more
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Varun Suryan, a doctoral student advised by Assistant Professor Pratap Tokekar wins the University of Maryland’s Three-Minute Thesis Competition for 2020. An undergraduate in Mechanical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Jodhpur, India, and Master in Computer Engineering from Virginia Tech, Suryan’s research focuses on multi-arm bandits and their application to solving informative path planning problems in robotics. “My main motivation in entering this competition was to challenge myself to break down my research in front of a general audience in less than three minutes,”...  read more
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Alex Hanson , a first-year doctoral student advised by Assistant Professor Abhinav Shrivastava , recently won the Department of Defense National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate (NDSEG) Fellowship for 2020. Hanson’s current research focuses on selecting data to make neural network training faster and produce more accurate models. In particular, his work aims to capture meaningful representations of high-level concepts from data via machine learning and use geometric methods to interpret and improve those representations. “I am hoping to be able to distinguish what a neural network...  read more
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Assistant Professor Soheil Feizi recently won the AWS Machine Learning Research Award for his project titled “Explainable Deep Learning: Accuracy, Robustness and Fairness”. The AWS Machine Learning Research Awards (MLRA) aims to support research to advance the frontiers of machine learning (ML) and its application across a wide range of problems. The funded project focuses on developing accurate, robust and fair interpretation methods for deep learning models. “The growing use of deep learning in sensitive applications such as medicine, autonomous driving, and finance raises concerns about...  read more
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Assistant Professor John Dickerson received the 2020 Graduate Faculty Mentor of the Year Award. This university-level award recognizes the outstanding mentoring provided by individual faculty. Dickerson was nominated for the award by Duncan McElfresh , a fourth-year PhD student in the Applied Mathematics & Statistics, and Scientific Computation (AMSC) program, and was supported by several other students. “Working with John has made the challenges of graduate school seem easy, and even enjoyable,” said McElfresh. “John is extremely supportive and treats his students as collaborators, I am...  read more
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Assistant Professor David Levin was recently selected as one of the awardees of the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT) 2020 Undergraduate Research Mentoring Award under the Junior faculty at a PhD granting institution category. The award recognizes the academic alliance (including Non-Profit U.S. Institutions) representatives for their outstanding mentorship, cutting edge research opportunity, encouragement and inclusion of women and minority students in computing related fields. “I consider this aspect of my work to really be what the job is all about to me, —...  read more