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2014 News Releases

    12/22/14
    Film Project Highlights Entrepreneurism at UC San Diego and on Torrey Pines Mesa

    A breakthrough today was a crazy idea yesterday. That’s a line from a new film project that documents a student-driven effort at UC San Diego and the research institutions across the Torrey Pines Mesa to help and encourage students to turn ideas and breakthroughs into startup companies. This short documentary film was produced and directed by Dr. Rajesh Grover, an assistant professor at The Scripps Research Institute and a visiting investigator at the  J. Craig Venter Institute in La Jolla, and Kenan Azam, a data scientist in the laboratory of UC San Diego bioengineering professor Shankar Subramaniam.  Both are former leaders of the UC San Diego Entrepreneur Challenge for the academic year 2011-12.

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    12/19/14
    UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering Launches Center for Extreme Events Research

    Engineers at the University of California, San Diego, have launched a new center of excellence focused on developing better ways to protect buildings, bridges, dams and the rest of the built infrastructure, as well as the human body, from extreme events such as blasts from terrorist attacks, mining explosions, car crashes, sports collisions and natural disasters such as landslides and earthquakes. 

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    12/19/14
    Sensors company founded by alumni wins award for their innovative products

    Electrozyme, a company founded by a team of engineering alumni at the University of California, San Diego, won a Most Innovative New Product Award from CONNECT. The company has deep roots at the Jacobs School of Engineering at UC San Diego, where co-founders Joshua Windmiller and Jared Tangney both earned their Ph.Ds. They also worked closely with the von Liebig Entrepreneurism Center and the Gordon Engineering Leadership Center at the school since 2010. 

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    12/17/14
    New Minecraft Modding Software Revolutionizes the Way We Teach Kids Coding

    A new e-learning software, developed by San Diego education start-up ThoughtSTEM, teaches K-12 students how to code by allowing them to write mods (“modifications”) to the popular video game, Minecraft. The software, called LearnToMod, was recently tested by over 1,000 Beta users and 100 teachers, and the final release of LearnToMod is slated for Jan. 15, 2015. ThoughtSTEM was co-founded by computer science Ph.D. students Stephen Foster and Sarah Esper. 

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    12/17/14
    NSF grant to improve visualization capabilities for the biosciences and geosciences

    The National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) is partnering with the University of California, San Diego (UC San Diego), to expand and enhance visualization capabilities in the bio- and geosciences through a grant from the National Science Foundation.

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    12/17/14
    UC San Diego Receives $3 Million Award to Help Advance Energy Storage Systems

    The University of California, San Diego has been awarded $3 million by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E) to help move innovative energy storage technologies out of the lab and into the market. UC San Diego will help test and validate the performance of ARPA-E-funded technologies through a program called Cycling Hardware to Analyze and Ready Grid-Scale Electricity Storage (CHARGES).

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    12/16/14
    CWC 5G Wireless Forum: The Promise and the Potential of a New User Experience

    What’s certain is that 5G is coming. What’s less certain is what 5G will look like once it arrives.

    It’s a testament to the excitement building around emerging fifth-generation (5G) wireless technologies that with only one month’s notice, 130 key experts from academia, government and industry met at the University of California, San Diego for the recent CWC 5G Forum on Next-Generation Wireless Systems – an opportunity to share insights, best practices and remaining research questions about the emerging systems and applications that are expected to drive 5G user experience.

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    12/15/14
    Researchers generate tunable photon-pair spectrum using a room temperature quantum optics silicon chip

    A team of researchers from the University of California, San Diego have demonstrated a way to emit and control quantum light generated using a chip made from silicon—one of the most widely used materials
    for modern electronics. The UC San Diego researchers recently described their new device’s performance
    online in the journal Nature Communications, available via Open Access.

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    12/11/14
    Student Entrepreneurs Find Success with Smart Earplugs

    When Daniel Lee enrolled in Nate Delson’s Product Design and Entrepreneurship class at UC San Diego, becoming an entrepreneur wasn’t on his radar. But a little more than a year later, Lee and two other students at the Jacobs School of Engineering already have raised more than $450,000 through crowdfunding for their start-up company, Hush Technology. Their product? Smart wireless earplugs that block out external sounds but still allow users to hear their alarm clock and important messages via a smartphone app.

    Lee, a mechanical engineering major, dreamed up the idea for the earplugs—which also double as a sound machine that plays white noise and ocean wave sounds—during Delson’s class. The class also provided him the tools to take his professional destiny in his own hands and start his own company, first at the Moxie Center for Student Entrepreneurship at UC San Diego and then at San Diego’s EvoNexus incubator. The devices will be manufactured here in San Diego.

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    12/10/14
    Researchers Demonstrate New Way To Plug 'Leaky' Light Cavities

    Engineers at the University of California, San Diego have demonstrated a new and more efficient way to trap light, using a phenomenon called bound states in the continuum (BIC) that was first proposed in the early days of quantum wave mechanics.

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    12/8/14
    A Sampler of Exciting Stories from 2014 from the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering

    From robots to rockets and crowdfunding to cybersecurity, 2014 has been a busy year here at the Jacobs School of Engineering at UC San Diego. Below is a sample of the highlights of the past 12 months. (Be sure to check the Jacobs School press release archive for 2014, Jacobs School blog, and archive of press clips highlighting Jacobs School projects for a more comprehensive list.)

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    12/8/14
    Helping the Next Generation of Students Come Up through the Jacobs School

    Mark J. Sally (MS '87, chemical engineering) was professor Richard Hertz’s first graduate student at UC San Diego. Mark received a fellowship to attend UC San Diego where he worked closely with a dynamic group of professors and students that also included Pao C. Chau, now professor emeritus nanoengineering, and David Miller, now professor emeritus, mechanical and aerospace engineering.

    “They were truly an inspiration,” said Mark who went on to apply his background in chemistry and chemical engineering to the field of catalysis research. 

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    12/4/14
    Triton Rocket Club in Furious Race to Make Campus First University to Launch Rocket into Space

    It’s Wednesday afternoon, and about a dozen students are hard at work trying to make history in the basement of Jacobs Hall. The students are building a 20-foot, two-stage rocket that they hope will make UC San Diego the first higher education institution to successfully send a rocket into space. They are in an unofficial race against Boston University and the University of Southern California. Both campuses are pursuing the same goal and have launches planned this coming spring or summer. The Triton Rocket Club at UC San Diego is hoping to beat them to the finish line by launching in March.

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    12/1/14
    Two UC San Diego Computer Scientists, One Electrical Engineer Named IEEE Fellows

    Three members of the Jacobs School of Engineering faculty at the University of California, San Diego have been elevated to be Fellows in the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). Computer Science and Engineering (CSE) Prof. David Kriegman was honored for his contributions to computer vision, and CSE Prof. Yuanyuan (YY) Zhou was cited for her “contributions to scalable algorithms and tools for computer reliability.” Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) Prof. Young-Han Kim was honored for his contributions to feedback communication and network information theory. All three faculty members are also affiliated with the Qualcomm Institute.

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    11/25/14
    NanoEngineering Professor Joseph Wang Appointed to SAIC Endowed Chair in Engineering at UC San Diego

    NanoEngineering professor Joseph Wang has been named to the Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) Endowed Chair in Engineering at the University of California, San Diego’s Jacobs School of Engineering.

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    11/25/14
    Bioengineering Study Finds Two-Cell Mouse Embryos Already Talking about Their Future

    Bioengineers at the University of California, San Diego have discovered that mouse embryos are contemplating their cellular fates in the earliest stages after fertilization when the embryo has only two to four cells, a discovery that could upend the scientific consensus about when embryonic cells begin differentiating into cell types.

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    11/24/14
    Vegetable Oil Ingredient Key to Destroying Gastric Disease Bacteria

    The bacterium Helicobacter pylori is strongly associated with gastric ulcers and cancer. To combat the infection, researchers at University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and Jacobs School of Engineering developed LipoLLA, a therapeutic nanoparticle that contains linolenic acid, a component in vegetable oils. In mice, LipoLLA was safe and more effective against H. pylori infection than standard antibiotic treatments.

    The results are published online Nov. 24 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

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    11/20/14
    Shu Chien Receives U.C. San Diego Roger Revelle Medal

    University of California, San Diego bioengineering professor Shu Chien has received the Roger Revelle Medal from UC San Diego Chancellor Pradeep K. Khosla with the citation: “Shu Chien is widely known as an exceptional researcher, instructor, mentor and citizen of the university and his professional community.” 

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    11/20/14
    UC San Diego Achieves a Hat Trick with 2014 HPCwire Awards

    The San Diego Supercomputer Center at the University of California, San Diego, has achieved a hat trick in garnering three awards for its university-wide WIFIRE project as part of the annual HPCwire Readers’ and Editors’ Choice Awards presented at the 2014 International Conference for High Performance Computing, Networking, Storage and Analysis (SC14), in New Orleans.

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    11/19/14
    Four Computer Science Majors Win 'Best iOS Hack' at USC Hackathon

    Four computer science undergraduate students won the best iOS Hack at the HackSC competition organized by the University of Southern California Nov. 7 to 9.  Josh Anatalio, Noah Martin, Lawrence Luk and Alvin Ho created an app called ezTouch, which allows users to lock and unlock one or more remote Mac computers using an iPhone’s fingerprint scanner.

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    11/10/14
    Software engineer Debbie Lu Remembers Global TIES Program

    Software engineer Debbie Lu (BS ’06, Computer Engineering) took a few minutes out of a busy day to talk about her time as a computer engineering student at UC San Diego. 

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    11/10/14
    Wireless devices used by casual pilots vulnerable to hacking, computer scientists find

    A new class of apps and wireless devices used by private pilots during flights for everything from GPS information to data about nearby aircraft is vulnerable to a wide range of security  attacks, which in some scenarios could lead to catastrophic outcomes, according to computer scientists at the University of California, San Diego and Johns Hopkins University. They presented their findings Nov. 5 at the 21st ACM Conference on Computer and Communications Security in Scottsdale, Ariz.

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    11/10/14
    Wireless Center at UC San Diego Organizes Forum on Future of 5G

    Wireless technologies have revolutionized almost every aspect of our lives: the way we work, interact, and socialize. Global adoption and emerging applications are fueling expectations and debate about so-called fifth-generation, or 5G, wireless technologies, and the expectations, needs, and directions for 5G are not as clear as those for the previous digital generations (3G and 4G). The Center for Wireless Communications (CWC) at the University of California, San Diego is organizing and hosting the 5G Forum on Next-Generation Wireless Systems and Applications, bringing together key experts from industry, government and academia to present and discuss their vision and research roadmaps for 5G.

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    11/7/14
    Engineering Graduate Students Named Siebel Scholars

    Five engineering graduate students from the University of California, San Diego have been named 2015 Siebel Scholars.

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    11/5/14
    Engineers and physicians propose new approach to single-ventricle heart surgery for infants

    A schematic of an industrial ejector pump. This device transfers the energy of flow with
    higher pressure to the flow with lower pressure, hence elevating the pressure at the outlet. Based on
    the same concept, flow through the SVC can be assisted by flow through the shunt to obtain a higher
    pressure at the PA without increasing SVC

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    11/5/14
    Two UC San Diego Engineers to Speak at Founders Celebration Nov. 13

    Two professors at the Jacobs School of Engineering at UC San Diego will be speaking at the campus’s Founders Celebration, Thursday, Nov. 13, 2014. Eugene Pawlak, a professor of mechanical engineering and alumnus of UC San Diego, will speak about “Turbulence: chicken soup for the coral reef soul.” Bill Griswold, a professor of computer science, will talk about “Pervasive air-quality monitoring via the crowd.”

     

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    11/5/14
    Qualcomm Institute Invites Proposals for Digitally-Mediated Events at UC San Diego

    The Qualcomm Institute is inviting University of California, San Diego-affiliated musicians, video artists, composers, engineers, and scientists to submit interdisciplinary event proposals to develop and/or stage their works and research in the institute’s high-tech venues. The new round of proposals will lead to the selection of works and research for the 2015 season of the institute’s Initiative for Digital Exploration of Arts and Sciences (IDEAS), with as many as a dozen residencies, presentations and performances to take place between January and November 2015.

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    11/5/14
    Thirteen UC San Diego Startups Present at National CTO Forum

    Thirteen startups from across the University of California, San Diego are presenting their work to CTOs and CIOs from around the nation this week, as part of a CTO Forum event. The UC San Diego startups are part of a larger group of 24 startups from the University of California system that are participating in the CTO Forum event. 

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    11/4/14
    US San Diego Engineers Explore Future of Health Care at Trillion Sensors Summit in San Diego

    Engineers from the University of California, San Diego will explore the convergence of near-ubiquitous sensing and the future of health care at the Trillion Sensors Summit San Diego on Nov. 12 and 13. 

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    10/29/14
    Engineers develop novel ultrasound technology to screen for heart conditions

    Engineers at the University of California, San Diego have determined for the first time the impact of a ring-shaped vortex on transporting blood flow in normal and abnormal ventricles within the human heart. They worked with cardiologists at the Non-Invasive Cardiology Laboratory at Gregorio Marañon Hospital, in Madrid, Spain. In order to make the study possible, researchers have developed a novel ultrasound technology that makes screening cheaper and much easier, making it possible to reach a large number of people and even infants. Intra-ventricular flow imaging is currently done with MRI scans, which is expensive and not suitable for patients with implanted devices such as pacemakers. 

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    10/29/14
    'Nanomotor lithography' answers call for affordable, simpler device manufacturing

    What does it take to fabricate electronic and medical devices tinier than a fraction of a human hair? Nanoengineers at the University of California, San Diego recently invented a new method of lithography in which nanoscale robots swim over the surface of light-sensitive material to create complex surface patterns that form the sensors and electronics components on nanoscale devices. Their research was published recently in the journal Nature Communications.

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    10/28/14
    New Solar Power Material Converts 90 Percent of Captured Light into Heat

    A multidisciplinary engineering team at the University of California, San Diego developed a new nanoparticle-based material for concentrating solar power plants designed to absorb and convert to heat more than 90 percent of the sunlight it captures. The new material can also withstand temperatures greater than 700 degrees Celsius and survive many years outdoors in spite of exposure to air and humidity. Their work, funded by the U.S. Department of Energy’s SunShot program, was published recently in two separate articles in the journal Nano Energy.

     

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    10/27/14
    ARCS Foundation Awards $232,500 in Fellowships for UC San Diego Graduate Students

    Dustin Richmond, a third-year graduate student in computer science and engineering, builds complex computer hardware systems with the power to process large data sets—such as the data involved with DNA sequencing. In his first year, Richmond worked with technology company Cognex to design an ultra-high-speed image processing pipeline—specifically for active 3D scanners—that could decompress and process 20,000 images per second. He is one of 31 UC San Diego graduate students who have been awarded a fellowship from the San Diego chapter of ARCS Foundation, Inc. for the 2014-2015 academic year. Members of the San Diego chapter presented the award check, totaling $232,500, to Chancellor Pradeep K. Khosla on Oct. 13 at the Ida and Cecil Green Faculty Club at UC San Diego.

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    10/27/14
    With Phased-Array Radar Technologies, UC San Diego Electrical Engineers Aim to Make Car Travel Safer

    Electrical engineers from UC San Diego have developed hardware for a new generation of automotive radar systems designed to keep drivers, and the pedestrians around them they may not see, safe.

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    10/23/14
    Jacobs School alum and Facebook engineer talks about 'Safety Check' feature

    When disaster strikes, we want to know that our loved ones are safe, but sometimes it can be hours before we are sure. Peter Cottle, a Jacob’s School alumnus, B.S.  ’11, has helped make the process a bit simpler. Cottle is a software engineer at Facebook and the creator of the new feature “Safety Check,” which the site launched in October 2014. On Oct. 20, he gave a talk to UC San Diego students about the concepts behind the feature and why it was developed.

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    10/23/14
    Coalition of UC San Diego Graduate Programs Supports Campus Commitment to Recruiting Diverse Students

    A coalition of UC San Diego campus programs debuted an enhanced recruiting presence at the Society for Advancement of Hispanics/Chicanos and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS) national conference in Los Angeles Oct. 16-18. 

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    10/22/14
    UC San Diego students help design toddler-tantrum-proof plate

    It’s a scene that many parents have witnessed, helplessly. It’s time for dinner and your toddler is getting restless. The object of their wrath? The dinner plate, which goes flying off the table and spills its contents all over the floor. A group of mechanical engineering undergraduate students at the University of California, San Diego helped a San Diego entrepreneur come up with a solution to this problem. It’s called the Adi, the stay-put plate. 

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    10/16/14
    Robotics Legends Converge at UC San Diego Forum

    After the industrial revolution and the Internet revolution, we are now poised for the robotics revolution. Influential robotics researchers and industry leaders made this prediction in many different ways on Friday at the Contextual Robotics Technologies International Forum. The speakers and more than 250 attendees gathered to reflect on what opportunities and challenges this revolution would bring, and how San Diego fits into this picture. 

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    10/16/14
    Nineteen new faculty join the Jacobs School of Engineering at UC San Diego

    Nineteen new faculty members will join the Jacobs School of Engineering this year, which is growing to meet the intense demand for its engineering education programs. 

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    10/13/14
    Students, Faculty Celebrate Women in Computing

    Nearly 40 students from the University of California, San Diego – most of them affiliated with the university’s chapter of Women in Computing – attended the 2014 Grace Hopper Celebration for Women in Computing Oct. 8 tp 10 in Phoenix, Ariz For two of the undergraduates majoring in computer science, it was also an opportunity to showcase research projects in the area of sketch recognition.

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    10/13/14
    Fun, bounce houses and snow cones: Engineers on the Green helps boost student involvement

    Tritons of all majors got to take a study break Oct. 6 at the Engineers on the Green fair in Matthews’s quad. Students made themselves busy playing games, making friends and most importantly gathering information about student engineering organizations eager to recruit members. 

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    10/7/14
    Team Internship Program: Building the next generation of engineers.

    They worked on the next generation of drones for 3D Robotics. At Cubic Transportation Systems, they created applications to allow public transit users to enhance their mobility and pay fares on their own mobile devices. At UTC Aerospace Systems, they re-engineered the designs for manufacturing aircraft parts. In all, 330 students participated in the Team Internship Program at the Jacobs School of Engineering at the University of California, San Diego this summer. They worked for 42 companies in the United States and around the world, including Yahoo!, Qualcomm and Solar Turbines, among many others. 

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    10/3/14
    Biomedical Engineers Win 'People's Choice' Award for Inspiring Video

    The National Academy of Engineering named a group of University of California, San Diego bioengineering students as the “People’s Choice” award winner in a video contest celebrating the 50th anniversary of the NAE. The Biomedical Engineering Society at UC San Diego received $5,000 in prize money for their award-winning video titled “The Future is Boundless.”

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    10/2/14
    Diabetes in a Dish

    Although type 1 diabetes can be controlled with insulin injections and lifestyle modifications, major advances in treating the disease have not been made in more than two decades and there remain fundamental gaps in what is understood about its causes and how to halt its progression.

    With a 5-year, $4-million grant from the National Institutes of Health, researchers at University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and bioengineers at UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering, with colleagues at UC Irvine and Washington University in St. Louis hope to change this.

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    10/1/14
    Jacobs School Recruiting for 16 Positions in 2014-15

    The Jacobs School of Engineering at UC San Diego is recruiting for 16 open faculty positions in the 2014-15 academic year.  Currently, four recruitments have been posted—each of which can lead to more than one hire. The positions are focused through cluster hires in robotics, materials and energy, advanced manufacturing, information sciences, engineering and clinical medicine, and more. 

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    9/30/14
    Engineers complete first comprehensive mesh-free numerical simulation of skeletal muscle tissue

    Engineers at the University of California, San Diego, have completed the first comprehensive numerical simulation of skeletal muscle tissue using a method that uses the pixels in an image as data points for the computer simulation—a method known as mesh-free simulation.

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    9/29/14
    UC San Diego to Host Contextual Robotics Forum on October 10

    The University of California, San Diego will host a robotics forum on October 10, 2014. The eight headlining speakers are world leaders in robotics disciplines that are relevant for the coming era of ubiquitous consumer robotics

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    9/25/14
    Capturing Ancient Maya Sites from Both a Rat's and a 'Bat's Eye View'

    A trip to the Guatemalan jungle usually nets a few souvenirs: Photographs of Maya ruins, bragging rights about encounters with venomous snakes, perhaps a bug bite or two. Following a recent field expedition to the Mesoamerican archaeological site known as El Zotz, researchers from the University of California, San Diego’s Qualcomm Institute (QI) returned home from Guatemala with all of the above – plus 300 gigabytes of 3D data derived from a bevy of high-tech virtual devices.

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    9/17/14
    Thermo Fisher Scientific, UC San Diego Announce Duane Roth Innovation Grant

    Thermo Fisher Scientific and the UC San Diego Office of Research Affairs have established the Duane Roth Innovation Grant, which provides scientific investigators at UC San Diego with a $50,000 annual funding opportunity for sponsored research that supports proof-of-concept and technology-applications studies.

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    9/15/14
    Engineers develop algorithms that allow you to switch out and recharge battery modules in electric cars

    Imagine being able to switch out the batteries in electric cars just like you switch out batteries in a photo camera or flashlight. A team of engineers at the University of California, San Diego, are trying to accomplish just that, in partnership with a local San Diego engineering company.

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    9/10/14
    UC San Diego Researchers Build First 500 GHz Photon Switch

    Electrical engineers at UC San Diego have built the first 500 Gigahertz (GHz) photon switch. “Our switch is more than an order of magnitude faster than any previously published result to date,” said UC San Diego electrical and computer engineering professor Stojan Radic. “That exceeds the speed of the fastest lightwave information channels in use today.”

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    9/10/14
    Benefunder to Launch New Funding Channel for Higher Education Research

    UC San Diego electrical engineering professor Gert Lanckriet is a co-founder of Benefunder, a San Diego-based philanthropic research funding platform for higher education institutions.  

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    9/9/14
    Lasers could make hard drives faster, simpler and higher density

    Researchers at the University of California, San Diego have discovered that for a wide range of ferromagnetic materials the direction of magnetization can be completely controlled by polarized light without the need for magnetic fields, a finding that could significantly affect the data memory and storage industries that produce hard disks and magnetic random access memories. Their research, published Aug. 21 in the journal Science Express, focused on materials currently being developed for high-density storage applications.

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    9/9/14
    Computer scientists launch Kickstarter for video game that teaches kids how to code

    Computer scientists at the University of California, San Diego have successfully funded on Kickstarter a new and improved version of CodeSpells, a first-person player game they developed that teaches players how to code. 

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    9/5/14
    The mystartupXX Program Receives $50,000 Grant from the U.S. Small Business Administration

    The mystartupXX program, a collaboration of the Rady School of Management at UC San Diego and the von Liebig Entrepreneurism Center at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering is pleased to announce it has been chosen as the recipient of a $50,000 grant from the U.S. Small Business Association (SBA). The announcement was made at the Rady School by SBA Administrator, and Obama Administration Cabinet member, Maria Contreras-Sweet.

    “There is so much innovation and job creation in San Diego and I believe the economic leadership at UC San Diego is extraordinary,” said Administrator Maria Contreras-Sweet. “I am pleased to announce the first winner of the grant based in California, mystartupXX. The mystartupXX program is doing something special and is a great contribution to America and to women.”

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    8/29/14
    Scientists sequence complete genome of E. coli Strain responsible for food poisoning

    Researchers at the University of California, San Diego have produced the first complete genome sequencing of a strain of E. coli that is a common cause of outbreaks of food poisoning in the United States. Although the E. coli strain EDL933 was first isolated in the 1980s, it gained national attention in 1993 when it was linked to an outbreak of food poisoning from Jack-in-the-Box restaurants in the western United States. Their paper published online Aug. 14 in the journal Genome Announcements reports the full, complete sequence with no gaps. Their analysis includes so-called jumping genes that can move around the same genome, sometimes causing damage to individual genes or enabling antibiotic resistance.

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    8/28/14
    UC San Diego Extends Global Partnership to University in Tijuana

    The University of California, San Diego and the Universidad Autonoma de Baja California, Mexico (UABC) have embarked on an initiative to increase collaboration and exchange among students and faculty from both universities. The initiative was formalized by a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed by UC San Diego Chancellor Pradeep K. Khosla and UABC President Felipe Cuamea Velazquez.

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    8/19/14
    Researchers find security flaws in backscatter X-ray scanners

    A team of researchers from the University of California, San Diego, the University of Michigan, and Johns Hopkins University have discovered several security vulnerabilities in full-body backscatter X-ray scanners deployed to U.S. airports between 2009 and 2013. In laboratory tests, the team was able to successfully conceal firearms and plastic explosive simulants from the Rapiscan Secure 1000 scanner.  The team was also able to modify the scanner operating software so it presents an “all-clear” image to the operator even when contraband was detected.  

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    8/19/14
    COSMOS program celebrates 10th anniversary

    What have you accomplished over the past four weeks? Made your own biodiesel? Miniaturized a pollution particle counter? Created an app for the color-blind? No? Then you’re probably not in the COSMOS program. The California State Summer School for Mathematics and Science (COSMOS) is a four-week residential summer program designed for talented and motivated high school students – students so motivated they’re not afraid to dream big, technologically speaking, to take on some of the world’s most difficult problems. The program celebrated its 10th anniversary this year.

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    8/11/14
    Matrix Stiffness is an Essential Tool in Stem Cell Differentiation

    Bioengineers at the University of California, San Diego have proven that when it comes to guiding stem cells into a specific cell type, the stiffness of the extracellular matrix used to culture them really does matter. The research team, led by bioengineering professor Adam Engler, also found that a protein binding the stem cell to the hydrogel is not a factor in the differentiation of the stem cell as previously suggested. The protein layer is merely an adhesive, the team reported Aug. 10 in the advance online edition of the journal Nature Materials.

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    8/7/14
    Designing Better Materials for the 21st Century

    The U.S. Defense Department recently named Jian Luo, professor of nanoengineering and materials science and engineering at the University of California, San Diego as one of 10 new National Security Science and Engineering Faculty Fellows (NSSEFF). The award provides up to $3 million over five years to develop a new materials design tool called interfacial phase diagrams.

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    8/6/14
    A taste of engineering for incoming freshmen

    The four-day Summer PrEP program is organized by the IDEA Student Center at the Jacobs School of Engineering at UC San Diego. In all, 51 students took part this year. They met with faculty members who gave them advice about academics and with students and alums who gave them advice on student life and life after graduation. Students also took part in many fun activities. In fall, they will become IDEA Scholars, who received mentoring from Jacobs School students, alumni and faculty and are involved in undergraduate research, among other things. 

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    8/5/14
    Learn to code while playing Minecraft

    A team of computer scientists at the University of California, San Diego, has developed a software package that allows users to learn how to program while playing the popular video game Minecraft. LearntoMod, which allows users to make a wide range of modifications to Minecraft, is available for pre-order for $30 here. The software will be delivered in October.

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    8/4/14
    UC San Diego Professor Awarded $300K for Mobile Health Lab-on-Chip Technology

    University of California, San Diego Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering Shaya Fainman has been awarded $300,000 from the National Science Foundation to develop a portable device with a disposable cartridge “lab-on-chip” (CLOC). The device will use bodily fluids to help people determine if they have a viral or bacterial infection or are experiencing an allergic reaction.

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    8/1/14
    Tumor Suppressor Mutations Alone Don't Explain Deadly Cancer

    Although mutations in a gene dubbed “the guardian of the genome” are widely recognized as being associated with more aggressive forms of cancer, physicians and bioengineers at the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine have found evidence suggesting that the deleterious health effects of the mutated gene may in large part be due to other genetic abnormalities, at least in squamous cell head and neck cancers. The study, published online Aug. 3 in the journal Nature Genetics, shows that high mortality rates among head and neck cancer patients tend to occur only when mutations in the tumor suppressor gene coincide with missing segments of genetic material on the cancer genome’s third chromosome.

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    7/29/14
    UC San Diego Engineering Graduates Aim For Game-Changing Green Chemistry

    San Diego-based company Genomatica, co-founded by UC San Diego bioengineering alumnus Christophe Schilling, sustainably produces chemicals essential in the manufacture of thousands of products from fabrics to plastics. 

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    7/29/14
    Computer Science Ph.D. Student's 'Unconventional Odyssey' to SMART Fellowship

    Natalie Larson has three years to finish her Ph.D. in computer science at the University of California, San Diego, and she wasn’t entirely certain where she would find the support to complete her degree. But now she is. The U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) has awarded Larson a Science, Mathematics and Research for Transformation (SMART) Fellowship, which will cover all of her costs for the next three years in return for a commitment to work the next two summers and at least three years in a DoD lab after graduating in 2017.

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    7/28/14
    Jacobs School Faculty Among the World's Most Influential Scientists

    Several Jacobs School professors have been named among the most influential scientists in the world by Thomson Reuters. Congratulations to Bernhard Palsson in bioengineering, Yuri Bazilevs in structural engineering and Joseph Wang in nanoengineering.

    The list compiles the most highly cited  researchers in the sciences and social sciences from 2002-2013.

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    7/24/14
    Liangfang Zhang Receives Allan P. Colburn Award from AIChE

    University of California, San Diego nanoengineering professor Liangfang Zhang has received the AIChE Allan P. Colburn Award for Excellence in Publications by a Young Member of the Institute, which recognizes significant contributions to chemical engineering by researchers under 36. Zhang is being recognized for “outstanding contributions to biomimetic nanomaterials for drug delivery to improve the treatments of cancers and infectious diseases.”

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    7/24/14
    Researchers discover cool-burning flames in space that could lead to better engines here on earth

    A team of international researchers has discovered a new type of cool burning flames that could lead to cleaner, more efficient engines for cars. The discovery was made during a series of experiments on the International Space Station by a team led by Forman Williams, a professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering at the University of California, San Diego. Researchers detailed their findings last month in the journal Microgravity Science and Technology

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    7/18/14
    Qualcomm Institute Announces Seed Grants to Build Clusters in Brain, Medical and Robotics Research

    The Qualcomm Institute at the University of California, San Diego has given the green light to 35 new projects that are part of the institute’s Calit2 Strategic Research Opportunities (CSRO) program. Each one-year seed grant is worth up to $50,000 in support for researchers in areas of critical interest to the research mission of the institute—and the university. (The Qualcomm Institute is the UC San Diego division of the California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology, or Calit2.)

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    7/17/14
    A GEM of a Prize

    Two physician-engineer teams from UC San Diego have been selected as the 2014 recipients of the Galvanizing Engineering in Medicine (GEM) awards from the Clinical and Translational Research Institute (CTRI) and the Institute of Engineering in Medicine (IEM). GEM, an initiative of UC San Diego's CTRI and IEM, supports projects that identify clinical challenges for which engineering solutions can be developed and implemented to improve health care.

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    7/3/14
    Outstanding students, professor recognized at 2014 Ring Ceremony

    More than 340 of this year’s 700 graduating seniors attended this year’s Ring Ceremony at the Jacobs School of Engineering. They heard from Qualcomm CEO Steven Mollenkopf, who served as the keynote speaker, as well as from student speakers Pooja Makhijani, former president of the Triton Engineering Student Council and bioengineering major, and Neha Shekhar, also a bioengineering major. Kevin Yin, TESC’s vice president of finance, served as master of ceremonies. 

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    7/3/14
    SDSC's kc claffy Receives Annual IEEE Internet Award

    kc claffy, the principal investigator and co-founder of the Center for Applied Internet Data Analysis (CAIDA) based at the San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC) at the University of California, San Diego, has been awarded the latest IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) Internet Award.

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    6/27/14
    Anouchka Mihaylova Bioengineering Award

    An award for bioengineering students at UC San Diego has been created to honor Anouchka Mihaylova. A project scientist in the bioengineering department, Mihaylova died on May 17 after being struck by a hit-and-run driver while walking with her husband in Rancho Bernardo.

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    6/25/14
    UC San Diego to Launch New Master's Program in Data Science and Engineering

    The University of California, San Diego has announced a new master’s degreeprogram in Data Science and Engineering, intended for working professionals with a broad educational background and/or training in computer science, engineering, or mathematics.

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    6/24/14
    Engineering students develop clock-inspired, electronics-free device to transport stem cells on planes

    A group of mechanical engineering students are developing a device to transport stem cells on airplanes—an  important problem for the research and biomedical community. The challenge with transporting live cells for stem cell therapies on a plane is twofold. The cells need to be constantly agitated so that they don’t clump together and lose their medical properties. And the FAA doesn’t allow packages with running electronics on airplanes— so a standard device driven by motors  is not an option for transport.

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    6/23/14
    Students design and program bioreactor to make biofuel from algae, autonomous quadcopter-and more-in embedded systems class

    A bioreactor that costs just $500. A robot that solves a Rubik’s cube in under 30 seconds. A quadcopter that flies around the room and avoids obstacles autonomously. These were just a few of the projects designed by students in the CSE 145 and 237 classes taught by computer science professor Ryan Kastner. The class’ goal is to teach students to build an embedded computing system. They learn the fundamentals of microcontrollers, such as Arduino and Beagle Bone Black, sensors and actuators. Students are also introduced to end-to-end system building and the hardware and software tools they will need to build a project in a team environment.

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    6/23/14
    Electrical Engineering Alumnus from UC San Diego Shares in DARPA Spectrum Challenge Grand Prize

    Adam Anderson (Ph.D. '08, electrical engineering) recently won the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Spectrum Challenge. 

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    6/19/14
    New Star on Tijuana Walk of Fame Encourages Girls to Pursue Engineering

    One of the first initiatives Olivia Graeve put in place when she arrived on the UC San Diego campus last year was an academic summer program for female high school students from Tijuana and San Ysidro. The girls lived on campus and conducted research in engineering and biology labs. As a professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering who specializes in materials science, she hopes to inspire more female students to follow her path. Graeve will be recognized for her scientific endeavors and her cross-border outreach efforts in July by being inducted in the Tijuana Walk of Fame.

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    6/18/14
    Outstanding Graduates from Class of 2014 Share Their Stories

    Engineering swept the outstanding student awards at this year's All Campus Graduation Celebration. Damini Tandon, a bioengineering major, was recognized as outstanding undergraduate student for her efforts to make health education and medical treatment accessible. Michael Porter, a Ph.D. student in the research group of materials science professor Joanna McKittrick, received the outstanding graduate student award for his academic achievements and his mentoring. 

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    6/18/14
    CISA3 Researchers to Document Underwater Cave, Paleoamerican Remains

    Scientists were able to analyze mitochondrial DNA taken from one of Naia’s wisdom teeth to reveal that Naia’s ancestry derived from an Asian genetic lineage only seen in Native Americans. For the first time, Naia’s remains presented hard evidence to support the theory that Native Americans descended from Siberians who crossed into America via a land bridge over the Bering Strait. This analysis was published in a recent issue of Science magazine.

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    6/16/14
    Nanoshell Shields Foreign Enzymes Used to Starve Cancer Cells from Immune System

    Nanoengineers at the University of California, San Diego have developed a nanoshell to protect foreign enzymes used to starve cancer cells as part of chemotherapy. Their work is featured on the June 2014 cover of the journal Nano Letters.Enzymes are naturally smart machines that are responsible for many complex functions and chemical reactions in biology. However, despite their huge potential, their use in medicine has been limited by the immune system, which is designed to attack foreign intruders.

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    6/10/14
    Researcher receives lifetime achievement award for contributions to control theory

    Robert Bitmead, a professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering at UC San Diego, fell in love with control theory as a third-year applied mathematics major at the University of Sydney in 1974. This fall, he will head out to San Antonio to receive the Rufus Oldenburger medal, a lifetime achievement award from the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, for his significant contributions in the field. 

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    6/4/14
    Get Involved: Q&A with JUMP Mentoring Program Co-founder

    Margie Mathewson, a Ph.D. student in bioengineering, is the co-founder of the Jacobs Undergraduate Mentoring Program, better known as JUMP. Within the past three years, the program went from serving 70 students to more than 300. Mathewson is getting ready to graduate and go out into industry. She will be starting work as a consultant for global management consulting firm McKinsey and Co. in Los Angeles in the fall.  In this Q&A, she talks about her experiences here at the Jacobs School of Engineering at UC San Diego and what decided her to get involved. 

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    6/4/14
    Health Data Exploration Network to Spur Research Using Personal Health Data

    The Health Data Exploration project, from the University of California, San Diego (UC San Diego) and the University of California, Irvine (UCI), has been awarded a $1.9 million grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), to create a network of researchers, scientists, companies and others to catalyze the use of personal health data for the public good. 

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    6/2/14
    Computer scientists develop tool to make the Internet of Things safer

    Computer scientists at the University of California, San Diego, have developed a tool that allows hardware designers and system builders to test security- a first for the field. One of the tool’s potential uses is described in the May-June issue of IEEE Micro magazine.

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    6/2/14
    App paired with sensor measures stress and delivers advice to cope in real time

    Computer scientists at Microsoft Research and the University of California, San Diego have developed a system that combines a mobile application and sensor to detect stress in parents and delivers research-based strategies to help decrease their stress during emotionally charged interactions with their children. The system was initially tested on a small group of parents of children with ADHD.

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    5/29/14
    Faculty Mentors Inspire Howard University Students to Pursue Doctorates at UC San Diego

    Last summer, Daril Brown and Nailah Seale arrived on UC San Diego’s campus for the first time as visiting undergraduates from Howard University. They spent eight weeks immersed in bioengineering research alongside UC San Diego faculty and graduate students, while learning strategies for applying to graduate school. Now, both Brown and Seale will return to the La Jolla campus in the fall to pursue their doctoral degrees, thanks in part to the mentorship they received that summer. In addition, each has been awarded a prestigious Graduate Research Fellowship from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to support their studies.

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    5/28/14
    A Snapshot of Success

    When she first applied for computer science internships, Brina Lee, who had a bachelor’s in communications from UC San Diego and a background in marketing, felt like she’d hit a wall of rejection. Now fast-forward just two years, and with a master’s in computer science from UC San Diego under her belt, she is the first female engineer to have been hired at Instagram, the company behind the popular image-sharing app.

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    5/27/14
    Supercomputing Our Way to Better Materials

    Impatience drives the materials science research of Shyue Ping Ong. The professor of nanoengineering says the world cannot afford to wait for a slow trial and error approach to discover new materials that could be used to build more energy-efficient technologies. The crisis of global climate change demands a faster and better answer. Ong was recently awarded a prestigious “Early Career” research award from the U.S. Department of Energy to apply his supercomputing approach to the challenge.

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    5/23/14
    Outstanding grads 2014

    More than 1,000 students will be graduating from the Jacobs School of Engineering next month. We couldn’t possibly profile them all, so we asked for help from our faculty to find a few of them that exemplify all the amazing achievements of our undergraduates.

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    5/23/14
    Computers can spot real or fake expressions of pain better than people

    A joint study by researchers at the University of California San Diego and the University of Toronto has found that a computer system spots real or faked expressions of pain more accurately than people can. The work, titled “Automatic Decoding of Deceptive Pain Expressions,” is published in the latest issue of Current Biology.

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    5/23/14
    Engineering freshmen learn rocket science

    A total of 7.2 seconds: that was the longest flight time for water rockets designed by undergraduate students in a structural engineering freshman seminar at the Jacobs School. The class is designed to teach students about different structures in aerospace, including rockets and aircraft, explained Hyonny Kim, a professor of structural engineering. 

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    5/21/14
    Remembering Anouchka Mihaylova

    Anouchka Mihaylova, a project scientist in the Department of Bioengineering at the University of California, San Diego died on May 17 after being struck by a hit-and-run driver while walking with her husband in Rancho Bernardo. Mihaylova joined the department in 2000, where she was a researcher in the Cardiac Mechanics Laboratory led by bioengineering professor Andrew McCulloch in the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering. Mihaylova was a key investigator of the National Biomedical Computation Resource.

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    5/19/14
    Statement on the Passing of Two Valued Campus Members

    It was a particularly tragic weekend for the UC San Diego community as we lost two valued campus members – a Revelle College student majoring in computer science and a bioengineering project scientist. Our hearts and thoughts go out to the families, friends and colleagues of these beloved individuals.

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    5/15/14
    Mechanical engineering student and star diver earns NCCA Postgraduate Scholarship

    Luke Calkins, an All-American senior diver for the UC San Diego men’s swimming and diving program this past winter and a mechanical engineering major has been awarded an NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship. Calkins, a native of Kansas City, Kansas is a two-time Capital One Academic All-American. The one-time grants of $7500 are awarded to student athletes who excel both academically and athletically and are at least in their final year of intercollegiate athletics competition. 

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    5/12/14
    An Interview with 2014 Research Expo Winner Ya-San Yeh

    Ya-San Yeh, a University of California, San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering graduate student won the grand prize at Research Expo 2014 on April 17 for her research on silica nanoparticles for cancer treatment. Yeh received the Rudee Outstanding Poster Award as well as the best departmental poster in bioengineering.  We caught up with Yeh after the big win to talk about her research and what it is like to work on a problem as big as cancer. Updated May 14 with videos of Research Expo faculty talks. 

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    5/8/14
    Bioprinting a 3D Liver-Like Device to Detoxify the Blood

    Nanoengineers at the University of California, San Diego have developed a 3D-printed device inspired by the liver to remove dangerous toxins from the blood. The device, which is designed to be used outside the body -- much like dialysis – uses nanoparticles to trap pore-forming toxins that can damage cellular membranes and are a key factor in illnesses that result from animal bites and stings, and bacterial infections. Their findings were published May 8 in the journal Nature Communications.

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    5/6/14
    Nanoengineers develop basis for electronics that stretch at the molecular level

    Nanoengineers at the University of California, San Diego are asking what might be possible if semiconductor materials were flexible and stretchable without sacrificing electronic function?

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    4/25/14
    New Online Voting Platform Aims to Give Public Unprecedented Lobbying Power

    A new online voting platform developed by UC San Diego alumnus Arshya “Ary” Sharifian and UC San Diego undergraduate Miles Minton now allows voters in North County San Diego to directly lobby their elected officials through weekly polls.

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    4/18/14
    Silica Nanoparticles for Cancer Treatment Take Top Prize at Research Expo 2014

    Ya-San Yeh, a University of California, San Diego graduate student working in the laboratory of electrical engineering and nanoengineering professor Sadik Esener, won the grand prize at Research Expo 2014 for her research on silica nanoparticles for cancer treatment. Yeh received the Rudee Outstanding Poster Award as well as the best departmental poster in bioengineering.

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    4/18/14
    Engineers develop new device to cool chips at the micro scale

    Engineers at the University of California, Berkeley and the University of California, San Diego, have built a novel evaporator structure that can cool chips with micro scale features. The structures are built on silicon chips for direct incorporation into electronics.

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    4/16/14
    Symmetrical Metal-contact RF MEMS Switch from UC San Diego: Art and Engineering

    If you’ve seen the images associated with Research Expo 2014 at the UC San Diego Jacobs School of Engineering, you’ve been looking at a symmetric and compact circular switch design. 

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    4/14/14
    Engineers develop new materials for hydrogen storage

    Engineers at the University of California, San Diego, have created new ceramic materials that could be used to store hydrogen safely and efficiently. The researchers have created for the first time compounds made from mixtures of calcium hexaboride, strontium and barium hexaboride. They also have demonstrated that the compounds could be manufactured using a simple, low-cost manufacturing method known as combustion synthesis.

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    4/9/14
    Closing the Loop on Computer-Aided Design & Manufacturing

    It seems a bit like a choose-your-own adventure story: You use computer-aided design to create a wind turbine. For 10 years you operate your turbine successfully but then disaster strikes in the form of a 6.8 (moment magnitude scale) earthquake. The decision is yours: Do you have confidence the turbine can continue to be safely operated, or do you decommission it, take your money and run?

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    4/9/14
    Researchers Develop Bacterial 'FM Radio'

    Programming living cells offers the prospect of harnessing sophisticated biological machinery for transformative applications in energy, agriculture, water remediation and medicine.  Inspired by engineering, researchers in the emerging field of synthetic biology have designed a tool box of small genetic components that act as intracellular switches, logic gates, counters and oscillators.

    But scientists have found it difficult to wire the components together to form larger circuits that can function as “genetic programs.”  One of the biggest obstacles? Dealing with a small number of available wires.

    A team of biologists and engineers at UC San Diego has taken a large step toward overcoming this obstacle. Their advance, detailed in a paper which appears in this week’s advance online publication of the journal Nature, describes their development of a rapid and tunable post-translational coupling for genetic circuits. This advance builds on their development of “biopixel” sensor arrays reported in Nature by the same group of scientists two years ago.

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    4/9/14
    New Venture Capital Fund to Commercialize Innovations from UC San Diego Community

    A group of alumni of the University of California, San Diego have created a venture capital fund—the Triton Technology Fund—that is specifically focused on commercializing innovations by UC San Diego faculty, students and alumni. This Fund will offer an additional option for UC San Diego innovators looking for the investment and expertise that is often crucial for successful technology commercialization.

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    4/7/14
    New Networks, New Research Questions

    Engineers at UC San Diego and around the world are beginning to applying rigorous scientific methods to a range of new and emerging networks – including the networks of people who use the Internet.

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    4/4/14
    Good Vibrations: Using Light-Heated Water to Deliver Drugs

    Researchers from the University of California, San Diego Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, in collaboration with materials scientists, engineers and neurobiologists, have discovered a new mechanism for using light to activate drug-delivering nanoparticles and other targeted therapeutic substances inside the body.

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    4/4/14
    Engineering a New Biomaterial Therapy for Treating Heart Attacks

    Bioengineering professor Karen Christman's new injectable hydrogel, which is designed to repair damaged cardiac tissue following a heart attack, has been licensed to San Diego-based startup Ventrix, Inc, which is planning the first human clinical trials of the technology.

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    4/2/14
    Understanding How the Brain Controls Movement

    A University of California, San Diego research team led by bioengineering professor Gert Cauwenberghs is working to understand how the brain circuitry controls how we move. The goal is to develop new technologies to help patients with Parkinson's disease and other debilitating medical conditions navigate the world on their own. Their research is funded by the National Science Foundation’s Emerging Frontiers of Research and Innovation program.

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    4/1/14
    Help From On High: UCSD Students Use Aerial 'Balloon Cam' to Document Racehorse Exhumation

    The world is getting one last look at the famed racehorse Native Diver courtesy of students from the University of California, San Diego and the aerial camera platform developed by the Engineers for Exploration program, which is based at the University’s Qualcomm Institute (QI). 

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    4/1/14
    Recent Computer Science Alumna Makes Waves ' Not Photo Filters ' at Instagram

    It isn’t often that a computer scientist is written up in an international fashion magazine, but an alumna of the Computer Science and Engineering (CSE) department at the University of California, San Diego is taking the publicity in stride. Brina Lee (BS Communications ’08, MS Computer Science ’13) was the first full-time female engineer hired at Instagram. She joined a year ago, and she found herself playing in a much bigger pond following Facebook’s acquisition of Instagram in late 2012. In the latest edition of the magazine ELLE, Lee is quoted as saying, “It’s great now that Instagram is a part of Facebook, so we can leverage all the women here!”

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    3/27/14
    Cymer Co-Founder Richard Sandstrom and Wife, Sandra Timmons, Give $1.2 Million for Students

    University of California, San Diego alumni Sandra Timmons and Richard Sandstrom, co-founder of Cymer, Inc., are passionate about their alma mater and helping future students achieve the same world-class education they received at UC San Diego. That’s why the couple recently pledged a gift of $1.2 million to the campus for student support through their charitable Timmstrom Family Fund. The gift will be split, per the donors’ wishes, to support graduate students in the Jacobs School of Engineering and undergraduates through the Chancellor’s Associates Scholars program.

    Full Story
    3/26/14
    It's a bird! It's a plane! It's a...pie?

    Move over watermelons and pumpkins! There’s a new addition to the list of things that are being dropped from the top of UC San Diego’s buildings—pie. To be more precise, a 13-inch, 4.5 pounds cherry pie from Costco, which was dropped from the third floor of the Structural and Materials Engineering building. It was all part of Pi Day celebrations March 14 at the Jacobs School of Engineering at UC San Diego. Fun for the day also included the third annual Pi-Mile Run and Walk, which set a record for turnout, with more than 200 people taking part. 

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    3/25/14
    Engineering students help Boy Scouts earn badges

    “A lot of times when you think about the skills Boy Scouts learn you think about tying knots, pioneering and fishing, not so much learning how to code,” said local Scout Leader Ron Anderson while his Vista-based troop defied that stereotype and worked through a programming tutorial in UC San Diego’s computer science laboratory in pursuit of their computer science merit badge. On March 8, more than 100 Boy Scouts descended on the UC San Diego campus to take part in the second annual merit badge fair organized by the campus’ chapter of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineering student. The local scouts – aged 11 to 18 – had the option of earning badges in either electrical engineering or computer programming.

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    3/17/14
    Study finds that fast-moving cells in the human immune system walk in a stepwise manner

    A team of biologists and engineers at UC San Diego applied advanced mathematical tools to answer a basic question in cell biology about how cells move and discovered that the mechanism looks very similar to walking. Their discovery, published March 17 in the Journal of Cell Biology, is an important advance toward developing new pharmacological strategies to treat chronic inflammatory diseases.

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    3/12/14
    Facebook Feelings Are Contagious, Study Shows

    You can’t catch a cold from a friend online. But can you catch a mood? It would seem so, according to new research from the University of California, San Diego.

    Published in PLOS ONE, the study analyzes over a billion anonymized status updates among more than 100 million users of Facebook in the United States. Positive posts beget positive posts, the study finds, and negative posts beget negative ones, with the positive posts being more influential, or more contagious.

    “Our study suggests that people are not just choosing other people like themselves to associate with but actually causing their friends’ emotional expressions to change,” said lead author James Fowler, professor of political science in the Division of Social Sciences and of medical genetics in the School of Medicine at UC San Diego. “We have enough power in this data set to show that emotional expressions spread online and also that positive expressions spread more than negative.”

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    3/11/14
    New UC San Diego Biosensor Will Guard Water Supplies from Toxic Threats

    Supported by a $953,958 grant from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), researchers at the University of California San Diego will develop a sophisticated new biosensor that can protect the nation’s water supplies from a wide range of toxins, including heavy metals and other poisons.

    The project, led by Jeff Hasty, director of the BioCircuits Institute at UC San Diego, will combine next-generation sequencing, synthetic biology, and microfluidic technologies to engineer a highly specific array of biosensors that will continuously monitor water supplies for the presence of toxins.

    Full Story
    3/10/14
    Qualcomm Institute Invites Proposals from UC San Diego Faculty for Strategic Research Grants

    In a continuing effort to offer peer-reviewed seed research awards to faculty and research scientists on the University of California, San Diego campus, the Qualcomm Institute has launched the third round of its Calit2 Strategic Research Opportunities (CSRO) grants. The new Call for Proposals follows earlier rounds when the institute awarded a total of $1.5 million in CSRO grants to UC San Diego faculty in 2010 and 2012.

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    3/10/14
    Coding for a Cause

    Sneha Jayaprakash, a sophomore at UC San Diego, is passionate about two things: computer science and social change. As part of the 2013 Microsoft YouthSpark Challenge for Change contest, she developed a winning proposal for a mobile app to engage students with volunteerism and social issues—and received a prize of $2,500 to get the project going. Now, with an additional $10,000 awarded by the Microsoft Imagine Fund last month, Jayaprakash is getting the opportunity to turn her idea into a successful startup.

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    3/7/14
    Dive into Technology's Future at Research Expo 2014

    Research Expo will be held on Thursday, April 17, from 1:30 p.m. to 6p.m. Register today. The annual event features research posters by more than 200 engineering graduate students from UC San Diego, faculty talks, and a networking reception with faculty, students, industry partners and alumni.

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    3/6/14
    How an Entrepreneurial Engineering Education Nurtured a Biotech Startup

    Identify a real-world problem.  Engineer a solution. And, if the solution works, figure out how it can be commercially viable. That’s what Michael Benchimol said he learned over 7 years of working in the laboratory of Sadik Esener, a professor in the departments of NanoEngineering and Electrical and Computer Engineering. In Benchimol’s (Ph.D., Electrical Engineering, ’12) case, it specifically means building a company to advance a targeted drug delivery platform that could make chemotherapy more effective and less toxic to the healthy tissue in the body.

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    2/28/14
    Jobs, internships on tap for students at engineering career fair

    The line of UC San Diego engineering students waiting to be admitted to the annual Disciplines of Engineering Career Fair wrapped all the way around the Price Center at UC San Diego Friday, Feb. 21. Dressed in their best business attire and with their resumes in tow, around 2,000 students crowded the center’s ballrooms, where recruiters in search of future employees set up shop.

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    2/28/14
    Bioengineering Students Recognized for Outstanding Research

    Several bioengineering students have been recognized for their outstanding research.

    Full Story
    2/24/14
    Using stolen computer processing cycles to mine Bitcoin: Who does it and how much do they make ?

    A team of computer scientists at the University of California, San Diego, has taken an unprecedented, in-depth look at how malware operators use the computers they infect to mine Bitcoin, a virtual currency whose value is highly volatile. Researchers examined more than 2,000 pieces of malware used by Bitcoin mining operations in 2012 and 2013. They were able to estimate how much money operators made off their operations and which countries were most affected. The computer scientists report that the revenue of 10 of the mining operations they studied reached at least 4,500 Bitcoin over two years. This may not seem like much, but Bitcoin’s value increased from about $10 to about $1,000 during that time, with a peak of $1,100 in November 2013. One Bitcoin is currently worth about $618.

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    2/20/14
    Outreach Event Helps Girls See Themselves as Scientists

    Westview senior Connie Chen watched the tail on the solar-powered “robot puppy” she built wag in the sun on the terrace of UC San Diego’s Price Center Saturday, on Feb. 8. A participant in the fifth annual Envision event, Chen, an aspiring computer programmer, was surrounded by like-minded high school girls similarly testing their own solar-powered creations, which included toy cars, boats and airplanes. 

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    2/18/14
    Calit2 Director Honored with Golden Goose Award

    Larry Smarr, an engineer and physicist whose work at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign on calculating black hole collisions led him to champion a federal commitment to dramatically enhance U.S. computing power – which in turn led to the development of NCSA Mosaic, the precursor to web browsers – was named today as the first 2014 recipient of the Golden Goose Award, which goes to three or four winners annually. Smarr is a Professor of Computer Science and Engineering at the University of California, San Diego, and Director of the California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology (Calit2), a partnership of UC San Diego and UC Irvine.

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    2/18/14
    UC San Diego to Host Workshop to Explore the Potential of New Memory Technologies

    The University of California, San Diego, will host the 5th Annual Non-Volatile Memories Workshop (NVMW 2014) on March 9 to 11.  The workshop will gather scientists and engineers from around the world to discuss the latest innovations in non-volatile computer memories; how they will be used to power increasingly sophisticated mobile electronic devices; and the role they will play in the era of “big data” and cloud computing.

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    1/30/14
    Studying Stem Cell Diets to Make Better Heart Cells

    What nutrients are needed for stem cells to grow and function as heart cells? That’s the question at the heart of research led by bioengineer Christian Metallo at the University of California, San Diego.

    He is one of eight UC San Diego researchers to receive a combined total of $8.165 million in funding from the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine in a new round of Basic Biology awards announced Jan. 29.  Metallo’s share is $1.124 million. The awards were made by CIRM’s Independent Citizens Oversight Committee.

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    1/29/14
    UC San Diego Embedded Control & Robotics students demonstrate prowess, connect with industry

    Miniature unmanned Segway-like robots, known as Mobile Inverted Pendulums (MIPs), appeared to defy gravity as they zipped around laptops and notebooks on just two wheels.  In the background, the students who built the MIPs mingled with controls engineers from industry. That was the scene Dec. 5 at the Industry Recognition Night concluding Prof. Thomas Bewley’s popular, difficult, and freshly reminted MAE143c course, in which each student builds and programs a MIP. 

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    1/29/14
    Real-life Toy Story

    well as tens of thousands of consumers mobbed the WowWee booth for four days to get a peek at the next generation of robotic toys.  This was the scene at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas earlier this month, where WowWee and their collaborators from the UC San Diego Coordinated Robotics Lab unveiled MiP, the first in a one-of-a-kind new line of self-balancing vehicles.  At CES, MiP was named a Product of the Future by Popular Science, earned an Innovation and Design award from ShowStoppers, was a highly popular finalist in CES’s Last Gadget Standing competition and received critical acclaim from many in the industry.

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    1/24/14
    UC San Diego Highlighted in Governor's State of the State Address

    As Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. delivered his annual State of the State address to the Legislature yesterday, he highlighted the University of California, San Diego as a leader in developing medical and scientific advances.

    In prepared remarks, Gov. Brown noted, “Four out of the world’s 20 leading academic bioscience institutions are located here in California: UCSF and Berkeley, UCLA, Stanford and UC San Diego. Just as California has led the way with stem cell research, so too can we pioneer the new field of precision medicine which uses genomics, medical devices, computer sciences and other fields to treat individual patients, instead of broad populations.”

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    1/23/14
    Material Developed by UC San Diego Engineers Could Speed Up Underwater Communications by Orders of Magnitude

    University of California, San Diego electrical engineering professor Zhaowei Liu and colleagues have taken the first steps in a project to develop fast-blinking LED systems for underwater optical communications.

    In the January 6 issue of Nature Nanotechnology, Liu and colleagues show that an artificial metamaterial can increase the light intensity and “blink speed” of a fluorescent light-emitting dye molecule.

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    1/21/14
    Crowdsourcing a Living Map of World Health

    What if by collecting data from mobile medical apps on cell phones around the world, we could map significant problems and see the flu coming like a giant whirling hurricane? A team of engineers, biologists and medical researchers at the University of California, San Diego wants to leverage the widespread use of smartphone technology and cloud computing to build maps of large-scale health problems or environmental damage such as the concentration of heavy metals in drinking water. The idea is based on the principle that health, including infectious disease and environmental pollution, is a trackable geospatial event.

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    1/16/14
    UC San Diego Students Look Back on Fall Field Expedition in Florence

    When they weren’t traveling to give research presentations or participate in archaeological digs and engineering collaborations in southern Italy or Greece, six graduate students from the University of California, San Diego spent most of the Fall 2013 quarter in Florence through late November. [Note: Much of the data gathered in Florence will be on view at the next Open Lab Night of the Center of Interdisciplinary Science for Art, Architecture and Archaeology (CISA3). The Open Lab Night takes place Feb. 20 from 5-7pm, and the public is invited to meet with the students and researchers, and to view results on the center's new WAVE curved 3D display system.]

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    1/15/14
    Calling All Girls: Coding Is Cool!

    The San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC) at the University of California, San Diego, in a partnership with other local universities and industry support groups, is launching a non-profit collaborative community program aimed at encouraging and educating young women to learn and apply computing skills. The program, called GirlTECH San Diego, is being launched this month by a partnership that so far includes UC San Diego, San Diego State University, the University of San Diego, and Point Loma Nazarene University. Workshops will begin later this quarter.

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    1/14/14
    RF MEMS: New Possibilities for Smartphones

    The antennas in most of today's smartphones do not function efficiently in 3G and 4G/LTE wireless environments. This leads to slower download speeds, reduced voice quality, lower energy efficiency and more dropped calls. A technology commonly used in satellite and defense applications-RF MEMS or Radio Frequency Micro-Electro-Mechanical Systems-is now poised to improve smartphone performance in the near future by way of higher antenna efficiency.

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    1/14/14
    Single-Cell Genome Sequencing Gets Better

    Bioengineers at the Jacobs School have created a better way to sequence genomes from individual cells. The breakthrough, which relies on microwells just 12 nanoliters in volume (see image below), is one of many recent "omics" innovations from researchers across the Jacobs School and UC San Diego. The single-cell genome sequencing advance from Kun Zhang's lab could help researchers understand what causes Alzheimer's disease. The work could also enable scientists to identify tough-to-culture microbes living in ocean water and within the human body-by probing single cells.

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    1/14/14
    Teaching Kids How to Code

    Kids shouldn't have to wait until college to learn programming-and to learn that it can be fun. That's the premise that led computer science Ph.D. students Sarah Esper and Stephen Foster to develop CodeSpells, a first-person player video game designed to teach students in elementary through high school how to program in Java. The pair, along with biochemistry Ph.D. student Lindsey Handley, also launched ThoughtSTEM, a startup that provides computer science workshops, afterschool programs and camps for children ages 8 to 18.

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    1/14/14
    Probing Bitcoins

    Bitcoin transactions may be anonymous, but they're also completely transparent. This makes stealing easier, but cashing in on the theft without getting caught a lot more difficult. That's one of the findings from "A Fistful of Bitcoins," a computer science paper that takes an in-depth look at how the virtual currency has been used since its introduction back in early 2009. Led by computer science Ph.D. student Sarah Meiklejohn, researchers documented more than 16 million transactions and more than 12 million public keys-the addresses Bitcoin users use for their transactions-as of April 13, 2013.

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    1/9/14
    How to Manage Mobile Medical App Development Under FDA Regulation

    A consortium of six leading universities, more than a dozen industry trade associations and professional societies, and the U.S. Food & Drug Administration announced their unprecedented collaboration to develop a series of educational programs designed to help mobile app developers learn about FDA requirements for producing higher risk medical apps as well as the business issues associated with entering this space.Called the “MMA Roadshow:  Managing App Development under FDA Regulation,” the four-hour workshops are scheduled over several months across the country, including Jan. 27 at the University of California, San Diego.

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    1/6/14
    Biomaterials Get Stem Cells to Commit to a Bony Future

    With the help of biomimetic matrices, a research team led by bioengineers at the University of California, San Diego has discovered exactly how calcium phosphate can coax stem cells to become bone-building cells. This work is published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences the week of Jan. 6, 2014.

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    1/3/14
    Workshop on Complexity and Coding Theory

    The first Computer Science and Engineering (CSE) workshop of 2014 is set to get underway on Wednesday, Jan. 8 in room 4004 of Atkinson Hall, the home of Calit2's Qualcomm Institute on the UC San Diego campus. The three-day Workshop on Complexity and Coding Theory will focus on recent topics at the intersection of theoretical computer science and coding theory, such as local codes, list-decodable codes, polar codes and network codes.

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