Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Blocking Spammers for Zero Cost

CSE researchers Kirill Levchenko, Andreas Pitsillidis,Neha Chachra, Brandon Enright, Tristan Halvorson, Chris Kanich, He Liu, Damon McCoy, Geoffrey Voelker, Stefan Savage along with colleagues in the Computer Science Division at UC Berkeley and the International Computer Science Institute have conducted a large-scale empirical study to measure the spam value chain in an end-to-end fashion. They have used their data to offer evidence that the spammers' payment tier is the most concentrated and valuable asset in the spam ecosystem, and one for which there may be a truly effective intervention through public policy action in Western countries. Click Trajectories: End-to-End Analysis of the Spam Value Chain. Read more: New York Times, Scientific American, New York Times Editorial. Listen to: NPR, All Things Considered

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Pioneer Programmers at UC San Diego Indirectly Inspired the Birth of Java

Ken Bowles, a former UC San Diego professor, and his students, are the subjects of a lengthy profile in next month's issue of Spectrum IEEE. Bowles and his team created in the mid-1970s to the mid-1980s the UCSD p-system, a computing system that was portable from one type of computer to another. The system could handle fairly sophisticated graphics (for its time) and included fairly modern features, including a full-screen text editor and drop-down menus.

According to the Spectrum IEEE story, this work "influenced academic computer science, the design of the Pascal programming language, object-oriented programming, and graphical user interfaces. Although that work did not produce a commercial success, the story of these visionary programmers and their audacious plans offers some unique insights into how the computer industry evolved—for example, why the Apple Macintosh is what it is. It also explains how an accident of fate would later bring these ideas to the world again in the form of Java."

James Gosling, best known as the father of Java, worked on machines that ran the UCSD p-system as a graduate student at Carnegie Mellon University. He used an approach he developed while working on these machines when creating Java, according to this story.

Read more at:

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Jacobs School Ph.D. Student Wins Qualcomm Innovation Fellowship

Congratulations to UC San Diego student Siarhei Vishniakou, one of eight Qualcomm Innovation Fellowship winners this year. The fellowship enables Ph.D. students (in a team of two) in EECS to pursue their futuristic innovative ideas. In 2011, the fellowship received 146 applications from teams in 11 of the top U.S. universities. Vishniakou was recommended by Prof. Deli Wang and collaborated with Paul Brochu of UCLA on the proposal “I-SENSE – Innovative Technology Enabling New Life-style”.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Engineering for Good

Watch this UCSD-TV video that profiles some of the programs at the Jacobs School, including Global TIES, TIP and a partnership with the National Geographic Society. Going far, doing good!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Nanoparticles go incognito to trick your immune system

Researchers at the University of California, San Diego have developed a novel method of disguising nanoparticles as red blood cells, which will enable them to evade the body’s immune system and deliver cancer-fighting drugs straight to a tumor. Their research was published this week in the online Early Edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

More Micromouse: Live Chat with Minji Kim, Outgoing President of UCSD IEEE

We hosted today a live chat on Facebook with Minji Kim, the outgoing president of UCSD IEEE. She told us about her organization, life at the Jacobs School and the micromouse competition. The transcript of the chat is below.
    • UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering We asked Minji Kim, the outgoing president of UCSD IEEE to tell us more about the competition. Minji: What was the most exciting thing for you at this event?
      38 minutes ago ·
    • Minji Kim It was very exciting to see students interact with each other and share their own approach. Not only do they learn by themselves before the competition, but they also learn from others at the competition - perhaps implementing new ideas for next year!
      34 minutes ago ·
    • UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering Tell us a little bit about the Jacobs School teams and how they did.
      33 minutes ago ·
    • Minji Kim Sure! We started with 6 teams this year, and 4 participated in the California Micromouse Competition. Out of those four, 2 robots made it to the center, and placed first and second. :)
      29 minutes ago ·
    • UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering That's great! What do you think are some of the learning experiences students take away from the micromouse competition?
      28 minutes ago ·
    • Minji Kim Generally speaking, students get to "build" something on their own from scratch. These are some experiences they don't necessarily get from classes. For more detailed (and technical) answers can be provided by our first place winner, Alex Forencich .
      24 minutes ago ·
    • UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering Thank you! Alex, if you're online, feel free to chime in! Meanwhile, Minji, how can students get involved with next year's micromouse competition and with UCSD IEEE?
      23 minutes ago ·
    • Minji Kim
      Any student (with IEEE membership) at UCSD Jacobs School of Engineering can join our Micromouse team here: Any of those emails under "contact" would work.
      Aside from Micromouse, we also have 5 o...See More
      19 minutes ago ·
    • UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering Thank you so much for doing this Minji! I know you graduated this year, so I was wondering if you had any advice for students here at the Jacobs School: What should they make sure they do before they graduate?
      18 minutes ago ·
    • Minji Kim Haha, no problem! I'm not sure if I'm qualified to answer this question, but I think they should make sure they find their passion before they graduate. And you only get to find out what you like by trying many things, and sorting "like" and "not like". So take the opportunities and try things when you're young! :)
      16 minutes ago ·
    • Alex Forencich
      A small note on building a micromouse:

      In building a micromouse, students learn all sorts of hands-on skills that range from electronics design and mechanical fabrication to embedded software development and debugging. All the little bits a...See More
      15 minutes ago · · 2 people
    • UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering Great! Jacobs School students out there, take note!
      15 minutes ago ·
    • UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering Alright, this concludes our live chat with Minji Kim, the outgoing president of UCSD IEEE. Minji: Thanks again for doing this! Everyone: make sure you read our story if you want to learn more about the competition.
      14 minutes ago · · 1 person
    • Minji Kim Thank you! And thank you, Alex, for the awesome answer!

      For more information about the California Micromouse Competition, visit here:
      13 minutes ago ·
    • UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering Alex: Thanks so much for your insights! This is great!
      12 minutes ago ·

Don't Pick Up That Mouse!

Teams that recently took part in a robotic mouse competition at the Jacobs School of Engineering faced a 30-second penalty if the picked up their micromouse to reboot it. Two UC San Diego teams won first and second place. Read our story about the competition to find out more.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Smell Your TV

Do you want to smell the cheesy pizza on your TV? Want to smell the perfume ad and not just take the celebrity spokesperson's word for how great it is? A two year experiment by UCSD engineers conducted in collaboration with Samsung Advanced Institute of Technology (SAIT) found that an odor-generating device for your TV or cell phone is a real possibility. Read the story.