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Abstracts

Venture capital firm hires dean to oversee fund
The San Diego Union - Tribune; San Diego, Calif.;
May 10, 2002; BRUCE V. BIGELOW

Abstract:
Enterprise Partners Venture Capital said yesterday the dean of UCSD's Jacobs School of Engineering, Robert W. Conn, will join the firm as a full partner overseeing its sixth and largest fund.

Moreover, Conn's success with R&D programs in key technical areas took place against a backdrop of unprecedented growth for UCSD's engineering school. During Conn's tenure, the school's annual extramural research funding has increased 270 percent, to $112 million. The Jacobs School also ranks now among the top engineering schools in the country.

Before he became dean, Conn was an engineering professor at UCLA, concentrating on plasma physics, fusion energy and materials research. He co-founded Plasma & Materials Technologies (now called Trikon Technologies), which makes equipment that both etches and deposits microcircuit patterns in the layers of semiconducting material used to make chips.

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Five Questions: Larry Smarr
The San Diego Union-Tribune; San Diego, Calif.;
May 6, 2002; BRUCE V. BIGELOW

Abstract:
Larry Smarr, 53, is director of the California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology, based at UC San Diego and UC Irvine. Smarr grew up in a flower shop, but his head was in the stars. He became a professor of astronomy and physics at the University of Illinois and has emerged as a leader in high- performance computing and network technologies.

Think in terms of bandwidth. If you're in a corporation or a university, you're getting 100 million bits per second. If you're at home or in a hotel room, you get 56,000 bits per second. Only about 5 percent of the homes and small businesses have either DSL or cable modem -- and those are not really broadband. Getting broadband to the home and small businesses is probably the biggest obstacle to the entire U.S. economy restarting

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TECHNOLOGY TRAILBLAZERS | Institute's Leader Called New Kind of Entrepreneur
The San Diego Union-Tribune; San Diego, Calif.;
May 5, 2002; Bill Ainsworth;

Abstract:
Franz Birkner, a venture capitalist, attended a six-hour meeting in which Smarr persuaded operators of Southern California universities' fiber-optic networks to work together to better use their experimental networks. Talking these territorial academics into teaming up, he said, was a "minor miracle."

At the time, supercomputers were located mainly at weapons labs. Smarr wanted to use supercomputers to speed his research on astrophysics and black holes, but found he had to get security clearance and persuade scientists at the weapons labs to give him access to their powerful technology.

For his efforts, Smarr was named Most Valuable Citizen of Champaign County in 1997, an award he keeps in his UCSD office.

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UCSD Bus Riders Make Speedy Net Connection | Quick Downloads, E-mail Check Touted
The San Diego Union-Tribune; San Diego, Calif.;
Apr 2, 2002; Bruce Lieberman;

Abstract:
The technology connects a local area network installed on a campus shuttle bus to Qualcomm communication towers at the UCSD campus and at three of the company's nearby buildings -- which in turn provide the high-speed connections.

UCSD has one Qualcomm tower atop its Irwin and Joan Jacobs School of Engineering, and three others are installed on Qualcomm buildings in Mira Mesa and Sorrento Valley and just east of Interstate 5 off Genesee Avenue. Each tower covers a 10-mile radius.

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