Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Research Expo / Learn about Research Advances First

The UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering invites you to campus for Research Expo 2012. See engineering advances before they are widely disseminated. Meet 230+ talented graduate students at the poster session.  Learn at the faculty talks and network at the reception.

Research Expo is Thursday, April 12 from 1:30-6:00 p.m. http://www.jacobsschool.ucsd.edu/re/

Research Expo at a Glance
* 230+ graduate student posters highlight engineering research
* Ten-minute faculty talks from all six engineering departments
* Meet faculty, students and technologists at the networking reception

Stay all afternoon or just a few hours in your area of interest. Recruit students, learn about the latest research breakthroughs, spark a collaboration.

Research Expo is a unique opportunity for industry engineers, scientists, investors and recruiters to access talent and advanced research across all six departments of the Jacobs School of Engineering.

Attend Research Expo. Your brain will thank you! http://www.jacobsschool.ucsd.edu/re/

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Advice for DECaF

People hire people, not resumes. Talk to everyone and make sure you mention offers you've received from other companies. Always end on a positive note and smile.
These were some of the pieces of advice that members of Women in Computing and tutors in the CSE department at the Jacobs School of Engineering gave to a standing-room only crowd last week in preparation for DECaF, the job fair that concludes Engineering Week here on campus.
The presenters knew what they were talking about. They had landed jobs at Yahoo!, Google, Facebook and Apple, among other companies. They had decided to put on the presentation to make sure more students land jobs with these companies.
As a CS student, it's important to study for interviews, explained Brina Lee, a first-year graduate student who has worked at Yahoo! Studying in groups is the best way to go. Picking a language that you already know well and sticking with it is the best approach. Recruiters are looking for good problem-solving skills rather than knowledge of a particular language. Students also should be comfortable writing code on a white board, without the help of a compiler. They should also be familiar with running time and data structures.
"Introduce yourself with confidence and stick your foot in the door," Lee said.
Below is a slideshow with the presentation she and fellow WIC members gave:

Created with flickr slideshow.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Mystery Game Kicks Off E-Week

Lab coats, portals and mysterious cubes started appearing on the UC San Diego campus last night, Tuesday, Feb. 21. In case you were wondering, they were all part of Aperture Labs, the event that kicked off E-Week at the Jacobs School of Engineering.

The Triton Engineering Student Council (TESC) started off its slew of big events in celebration of the National Engineers Week by showing off the mysterious Aperture Labs. Most volunteers were as unsure of what was to happen as the participants. As Justin Huang, president of TESC, noted, “All they know is that they’re here as test subjects!”

The event was inspired by Portal, an acclaimed video game, which probably was the only thing engineering students from diverse backgrounds had in common as they filled up the conference room in the Computer Science and Engineering Building. Luis Meraz, a TESC board member who was in charge of the event, worked hard with his team of volunteers to make sure the event was as close to the real game as possible. To ensure this, the volunteers wore lab coats and were identified as Aperture Lab Scientists and students were given orange vests for ‘protection.’ The students, in teams of four, were required to complete a scavenger hunt using portals; create a potato battery; and answer an engineering quiz. The team that completed all the parts in the least amount of time won. Each team was also provided with a ‘cube’, with all the materials needed to complete the course. 
As Meraz explained to the participants, “The cube is your best friend”.

Participants had a great time in this event, and some good exercise too, due to portals being placed at distant locations around the campus. The good news: Valve Corporation, developer of Portal and a sponsor for the event, made sure participants could look forward to shirts, posters, stickers, jackets and cake at the end of the game. 

See more Aperture Labs pictures here.
Story by Abhinav Jha

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Some Encryption Keys Vulnerable, Researchers Say

Researchers at the Jacobs School of Engineering at UC San Diego and at the University of Michigan recently announced that they were able to compromise one in every 250 public encryption keys used for SSL website security on the Internet. The security flaw mainly affects embedded devices such as routers and VPN devices, as opposed to popular web sites.  The main issue was that the encryption keys weren’t generated as randomly as they should have been, allowing potential attackers to efficiently discover devices’ private keys.
Nadia Heninger, a postdoctoral researcher in the computer science department at the Jacobs School of Engineering, and colleagues Zakir Durumeric, Eric Wustrow, and J. Alex Halderman of the University of Michigan plan to publish their results after they have contacted the manufacturers of the vulnerable devices to alert them of the flaw.
More on the study and on how the researchers broke the encryption keys here.
Read an item for the University of Michigan here.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Mechanical and Structural Design of the Gamma Ray Observatory / Engineering Lecture by Professor Roland L. Beanum, MBA

Lecture:  The Mechanical and Structural Design of the Gamma Ray Observatory
When: Thursday, Feb 23 
What time: 2-3:30 pm
Where: Qualcomm Conference Center, Jacobs Hall, UC San Diego

Professor Roland L. Beanum will be lecturing and presenting the technical process and human effort of how he performed with his team of engineers at TRW the Mechanical and Structural elements for the Gamma Ray Observatory spacecraft.  NASA's Gamma Ray Observatory was launch into Earth orbit on April 5, 1991 by the STS-37 the eighth flight of the shuttle Atlantis and the 39th shuttle flight. The orbiter weighed 115,502 kg at launch; total vehicle weight was 2,047,178 kg. Much of the payload was the Gamma Ray Observatory (GRO), at 15, 620 kg (37,000 pounds) the heaviest shuttle-launched payload to that date. The GRO de-orbit occurred June 5, 2000.

Professor Beanum’s lecture will briefly touch upon the future needs in Space and how San Diego can today with its rich legacy in Aircraft design and production, contribute in the commercialization of space. 

He is currently working on a proposal to teach a course that will be designed around "The History of Human Space Flight".  During the course, products will be suggested for production by the industrial and research complexes represented that can stimulate the commercial environments to create jobs within the community of San Diego. The course will both define and raise issues related to how people and companies in San Diego can contribute specifically to the human spaceflight industry and spaceflight missions.

Will It Shake?

The folks at "Totally Unprepared," an online show about earthquake preparedness, are at it again. This time, they wanted to see what would happen during an earthquake to framed photos and pictures hanging on a wall.
Experts at the Jacobs School of Engineering graciously made one of their shake tables available to put the pictures to the test. Watch the video below to see what happens. Hint: you might want to go buy some earthquake-safe hooks and museum putty after you watch this.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Spacecraft With UC San Diego-manned Cameras Shoots Its First Video of the Far Side of the Moon

NASA's GRAIL spacecraft has shot its first video of the Far Side of the Moon, which the agency released today. The two spacecraft, which have recently been named Ebb and Flow, are equipped with cameras that will be manned by UC San Diego undergraduates, many of them engineering students.

The cameras will allow middle school classrooms to request pictures of the surface of the moon. The requests will come to a mission command center at UC San Diego. The undergraduates will communicate with NASA's mission control and make sure the cameras take the requested pictures. The mission will being in March of this year and last until May.

To get a better understanding of what you're seeing in the video, read the NASA press release here.

The Gravity Recovery and Interior Laboratory (GRAIL) mission isn't just about science outreach. It will measure the gravity of the Earth's satellite in unprecedented detail, according to NASA. It also will answer questions about the moon's internal structure.

The MoonKAM project is led by Sally Ride Science, in collaboration with undergraduates at UC San Diego.
Find out more about MoonKAM here.

CSE Prof. Stefan Savage Quoted on Car Electronic Safety in MIT Tech Review, Bloomberg

Car thieves could exploit security weaknesses to remotely open and start a car, or a spy could listen to conversations inside a car, Stefan Savage, a professor at the Jacobs School of Engineering, told Bloomberg this week.

Savage was quoted as part of a story about a report from the National Academy of Sciences, detailing concerns that computers designed for entertainment could help highjack a vehicle's safety features.

"That has Hollywood action movie written all over it," Savage said in another story in the MIT Technology Review.

He and colleagues at the University of Washington authored a 2010 study showing that they could take control of a car, its locks and its brakes. They could even kill the vehicle's engine.

In response to these concerns, General Motors' OnStar division, which provides remote roadside assistance, increased its security budget almost tenfold in the past year, according to the MIT Tech Review story.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

von Liebig Center in the UT San Diego

Great story about the von Liebig Center in the UT San Diego this week.
Innovation is the engine of the economy, and UC San Diego is turbocharging the RPMs. That’s why the von Liebig Entrepreneurism Center was formed 10 years ago in the Jacobs School of Engineering. The center offers classes, mentorship and grants to all graduate students at UC San Diego, and it also has collaborations with other universities in the region. It has a satellite office at Scripps Institution of Oceanography and works closely with the UC San Diego Medical School and the Rady School of Management.
 The story is part of the "I'm There for You, Baby" series by Neil Senturia and Barbara Bry, serial entrepreneurs who invest in early-stage technology companies. The weekly column is about entrepreneurship in San Diego.