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Events for March

  • Trojan Talk with Disney Imagineering

    Wed, Mar 06, 2019 @ 05:30 PM - 07:00 PM

    Viterbi School of Engineering Career Connections

    University Calendar

    Hear from Viterbi ISE alumnus Justin Newton about his career path, how he landed a job working at the ultimate dream company, and what it takes to be a Disney Imagineer!

    Justin Newton is an executive at Walt Disney Imagineering. He is responsible for process improvement, risk management, talent development and supporting Walt Disney Imagineering projects.

    Location: Seeley G. Mudd Building (SGM) - 101

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: RTH 218 Viterbi Career Connections

  • Intro to Deep Learning with AAAI and GRIDS

    Wed, Mar 06, 2019 @ 07:30 PM - 09:00 PM

    Viterbi School of Engineering Student Organizations

    University Calendar

    Join AAAI as we collaborate with USC's GRIDS (Graduates Rising in Informatics and Data Science) to bring you a presentation on Intro to Deep Learning.

    Deep learning has been the focus of much attention (and hype) in recent years: it has not only revolutionized consumer technologies ranging from image understanding to language processing to speech recognition, but has also found its way into domains like genomics, robotics, and particle physics. In this talk, we take a grounded look at what deep learning really is, what it is good for, how it is being used all around you, what you need to know to get started with it, and how you can do so on a budget.

    RSVP Here

    Location: Seeley G. Mudd Building (SGM) - 124

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: USC AAAI

  • PhD Defense - Abdulmajeed Alameer

    Tue, Mar 19, 2019 @ 11:00 AM - 01:30 PM

    Thomas Lord Department of Computer Science

    University Calendar

    PhD Candidate:
    Abdulmajeed Alameer

    William G.J. Halfond (Chair)
    Nenad Medvidovic
    Sandeep Gupta
    Chao Wang
    Jyotirmoy V. Deshmukh

    Dissertation Title:
    Detection, Localization, and Repair of Internationalization Presentation Failures in Web Applications

    Time and Location:
    3/19 from 11am to 1:30pm - Room PHE 223.

    Web applications can be easily made available to an international audience by leveraging frameworks
    and tools for automatic translation and localization. However, these automated changes
    can introduce Internationalization Presentation Failures (IPFs) - an undesired distortion of the
    web page's intended appearance that occurs as HTML elements expand, contract, or move in
    order to handle the translated text. It is challenging for developers to design websites that can
    inherently adapt to the expansion and contraction of text after it is translated to different languages.
    Existing web testing techniques do not support developers in debugging these types of
    problems and manually testing every page in every language can be a labor intensive and error
    prone task.

    In my dissertation work, I designed and evaluated two techniques to help developers in debugging
    web pages that have been distorted due to internationalization efforts. In the first part of
    my dissertation, I designed an automated approach for detecting IPFs and identifying the HTML
    elements responsible for the observed problem. In evaluation, my approach was able to detect
    IPFs in a set of 70 web applications with high precision and recall and was able to accurately
    identify the underlying elements in the web pages that led to the observed IPFs. In the second
    part of my dissertation, I designed an approach that can automatically repair web pages that
    have been distorted due to internationalization efforts. My approach models the correct layout
    of a web page as a system of constraints. The solution to the system represents the new and
    correct layout of the web page that resolves its IPFs. The evaluation of this approach showed
    that it could more quickly produce repaired web pages that were rated as more attractive and
    more readable than those produced by a prior state-of-the-art technique. Overall, these results
    are positive and indicate that both my detection and repair techniques can assist developers in
    debugging IPFs in web applications with high effectiveness and efficiency.

    Time and Location:
    3/19 from 11am to 1:30pm - Room PHE 223.

    Location: Charles Lee Powell Hall (PHE) - 223

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Lizsl De Leon

  • RASC seminar - How to Make, Sense, and Make Sense of Contact in Robotic Manipulation

    Thu, Mar 21, 2019 @ 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM

    Thomas Lord Department of Computer Science

    University Calendar

    "How to Make, Sense, and Make Sense of Contact in Robotic Manipulation"

    Dexterous manipulation is still one of the key open problems for many new robotic applications, owing in great measure to the difficulty of dealing with transient contact. From an analytical standpoint, intermittent frictional contact (the essence of manipulation) is difficult to model, as it gives rise to non-convex problems with no known efficient solvers. Contact is also difficult to sense, particularly with sensors integrated in a mechanical package that must also be compact, highly articulated and appropriately actuated (i.e. a robot hand). Articulation and actuation present their own challenges: a dexterous hand comes with a high-dimensional posture space, difficult to design, actuate, and control. In this talk, I will present our work trying to address these challenges: analytical models of grasp stability (with realistic energy dissipation constraints), design and use of sensors (tactile and proprioceptive) for manipulation, and hand posture subspaces (for design optimization and teleoperation). These are stepping stones towards achieving versatile robotic manipulation, needed by applications as diverse as logistics, manufacturing, disaster response and space robots.

    Matei Ciocarlie is an Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Columbia University. His current work focuses on robot motor control, mechanism and sensor design, planning and learning, all aiming to demonstrate complex motor skills such as dexterous manipulation. Matei completed his Ph.D. at Columbia University in New York; before joining the faculty at Columbia, he was a Research Scientist and Group Manager at Willow Garage, Inc., a privately funded Silicon Valley robotics research lab, and then a Senior Research Scientist at Google, Inc. In recognition of his work, Matei has been awarded the Early Career Award by the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society, a Young Investigator Award by the Office of Naval Research, a CAREER Award by the National Science Foundation, and a Sloan Research Fellowship by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

    Hosted by: Gaurav Sukhatme

    Location: Ronald Tutor Hall of Engineering (RTH) - 406

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Lizsl De Leon

  • PhD Defense - Yuan Shi

    Thu, Mar 21, 2019 @ 10:00 AM - 11:30 AM

    Thomas Lord Department of Computer Science

    University Calendar

    Time and Location: 3/21 10 am - 11:30 am - PHE 223

    PhD Candidate: Yuan Shi

    Craig Knoblock (Chair)
    Yan Liu
    T. K. Satish Kumar
    Daniel Edmund O'Leary (external member)

    Title: Learning to Adapt to Sensor Changes and Failures

    Many software systems run on long-lifespan platforms that operate in diverse and dynamic environments. As a result, significant time and effort are spent manually adapting software to operate effectively when hardware, resources and external devices change. If software systems could automatically adapt to these changes, it would significantly reduce the maintenance cost and enable more rapid upgrade. As an important step towards building such long-lived, survivable software systems, we study the problem of how to automatically adapt to changes and failures in sensors.

    We address several adaptation scenarios, including adaptation to individual sensor failure, compound sensor failure, individual sensor change, and compound sensor change. We develop two levels of adaptation approaches: sensor-level adaptation that reconstructs original sensor values, and model-level adaptation that directly adapts machine learning models built on sensor data. Sensor-level adaptation is based on preserving sensor relationships after adaptation, while model-level adaptation maps sensor data into a discriminative feature space that is invariant with respect to changes.

    Compared to existing work, our adaptation approaches have the following novel capabilities: 1) adaptation to new sensors even when there is no overlapping period between new and old sensors; 2) efficient adaptation by leveraging sensor-specific transformations derived from sensor data; 3) scaling to a large number of sensors; 4) learning robust adaptation functions by leveraging spatial and temporal information of sensors; and 5) estimating the quality of adaptation.

    Additionally, we present a constraint-based learning framework that performs joint sensor failure detection and adaptation by leveraging sensor relationships. Our framework learns sensor relationships from historical data and expresses them as a set of constraints. These constraints then provide a joint view for detection and adaptation: detection checks which constraints are violated, and adaptation reconstructs failed sensor values. Our framework is capable of handling multi-sensor failures which are challenging for existing methods.

    To validate our approaches, we conduct empirical studies on sensor data from the weather and UUV (Unmanned Underwater Vehicle) domains. The results show that our approaches can automatically detect and adapt to sensor changes and failures with higher accuracy and robustness compared to other alternative approaches.

    Location: Charles Lee Powell Hall (PHE) - 223

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Lizsl De Leon

  • Embracing Inclusion in Faculty Hiring and Retention

    Mon, Mar 25, 2019 @ 11:00 AM - 01:30 PM

    Viterbi School of Engineering Student Affairs

    University Calendar

    The Campus Climate Committee of the Academic Senate invites you to a presentation and lunch with Lori Nishiura Mackenzie, Executive Director of The Clayman Institute for Gender Research at Stanford University.

    Ms. Mackenzie will be presenting a talk on Embracing Inclusion in Faculty Hiring and Retention and sharing case studies and practical tips for hiring committees.

    As space is limited, please RSVP by Wednesday, March 20: https://events.usc.edu/esvp/ (enter code: cccspring19).

    Lunch will be served.

    Location: The Vineyard Room

    Audiences: Faculty and Staff

    Contact: Helen Choi

  • Meet USC: Admission Presentation, Campus Tour, and Engineering Talk

    Fri, Mar 29, 2019

    Viterbi School of Engineering Undergraduate Admission

    University Calendar

    This half day program is designed for prospective freshmen (HS seniors and younger) and family members. Meet USC includes an information session on the University and the Admission process, a student led walking tour of campus, and a meeting with us in the Viterbi School. During the engineering session we will discuss the curriculum, research opportunities, hands-on projects, entrepreneurial support programs, and other aspects of the engineering school. Meet USC is designed to answer all of your questions about USC, the application process, and financial aid.

    Reservations are required for Meet USC. This program occurs twice, once at 8:30 a.m. and again at 12:30 p.m.

    Please make sure to check availability and register online for the session you wish to attend. Also, remember to list an Engineering major as your "intended major" on the webform!


    Location: Ronald Tutor Campus Center (TCC) - USC Admission Office

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Viterbi Admission