Weekly Memo

July 7, 2014

Dear members of the Hajim School community:

   Henry Kautz, who last week stepped aside as Chair of Computer Science to be the Director of our University's Institute for Data Science, is quoted in Forbes on the University's plans to offer bachelor of arts and bachelor of science degrees in data science this coming school year.  “Our goal is to grow to 50 students in each graduating class within four years,” Kautz said. “Beyond courses, students in the program are encouraged to participate in undergraduate research projects with faculty,” Kautz added. “Both faculty and the university’s Career Center help students find paid summer internships in the industry. Based on our experience with our computer science program, we expect the majority of data science majors to participate in both research projects and summer internships before graduating.” This was a great opportunity to showcase our strengths in this area; thanks, Henry, for taking full advantage! The McKinsey Global Institute, the business and economics research arm of McKinsey & Co., has predicted that by 2018 the United States could face a shortage of between 140,000 to 190,000 people with deep analytical skills, as well as a shortage of 1.5 million managers and analysts who know how to use the analysis of big data to make effective decisions. You can read more here.

      Here are a couple of examples of our Computer Science graduates having an impact at the leading edge of their fields. Dennis Huo '10 works at Google and gave this talk about his work at a recent Google Developers I/O conference. And Maged Michael '97 (Ph.D.) received the  "Most Influential Paper Award" at PLDI '14 (Programming Language Design and Implementation) in Edinburgh, Scotland last month. Maged received the award for his work from 2004 at IBM's Thomas J. Watson Research Center on "Scalable Lock-Free Dynamic Memory Allocation," which PLDI considers "a landmark in memory allocation for multithreaded programs." Prof. Michael Scott, who supervised Maged's Ph.D., had the pleasure of being in Edinburgh to watch him receive the award. Read more here.

    The University of Rochester will be well-represented at a Gordon Research Conference program on the Auditory System, "Encoding Hearing: From Genes to Behavior," which will be held later this week and next at Bates College. Three faculty members with primary or secondary appointments in Biomedical Engineering will present talks. Assoc. Prof. Anne Luebke's topic will be "Children with Autism Have Reduced Otoacoustic Emissions in Certain Speech Frequencies." Prof. Laurel Carney will discuss "Coding of Speech Sounds in the Auditory Midbrain," and also serve as a discussion leader. And Gary Paige, Professor of Neurobiology and Anatomy, will address "Parsing Adaptive Processes that Resolve Audio-Visual Spatial Disparity." The Gordon Research Conferences provide an international forum for the presentation and discussion of frontier research in the biological, chemical, and physical sciences, and their related technologies.

     As always, keep me updated and have a great week.


Robert L. Clark
Professor and Dean