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Events for March 28, 2022

  • ECE Seminar Announcement: Accelerating Chip-Building Design Cycles for Future Generations of Computing

    Mon, Mar 28, 2022 @ 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM

    Ming Hsieh Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Dr. Christopher Torng, Postdoctoral Researcher, Stanford University

    Talk Title: Accelerating Chip-Building Design Cycles for Future Generations of Computing

    Abstract: The chip building industry is a major cornerstone of the global economy. As a result, addressing the causes behind a multi-year global chip shortage is important for both near and long term futures. Unfortunately, one major challenge is that it is difficult to produce high-quality designs quickly and at low cost using traditional hardware design flows. This means that the industry wastes valuable fabrication slots learning painful design lessons rather than meeting economic demands.

    My research focuses on building new architectures, systems, and design tools to accelerate chip building design cycles for future generations of computing systems. To support this goal, my research spans across the computing stack, ranging from applications, compilers, architectures, and down to chip implementation. In this talk, I will first present a set of vertically integrated techniques (compiler, architecture, and VLSI) that significantly reduces the design effort for extremely fine-grain power control in spatial architectures. Next, I will introduce my work on a new generation of open and agile hardware flow tools that leverage modern programming language features to increase code reuse in physical design. Finally, I will discuss recent work on Amber SoC, a coarse-grained reconfigurable array designed with an end-to-end agile accelerator-compiler co-designed flow. I will conclude with my future directions in supporting chip building for the next generation of computing.

    Biography: Christopher Torng is a postdoctoral researcher at Stanford University. He received his Ph.D. degree, M.S. degree, and B.S degree (2019, 2016, 2012) in Electrical and Computer Engineering from Cornell University. His projects target the development of architectures and tools to accelerate building chips and complex hardware systems. His tools have achieved use across multiple universities to support over ten academic tapeouts in technologies ranging from 180nm to 16nm. His activities have resulted in a selection as a Rising Star in Computer Architecture (2018) by Georgia Tech and an IEEE MICRO Top Pick from Hot Chips (2018).

    Host: Dr. Peter Beerel, pabeerel@usc.edu

    Webcast: https://usc.zoom.us/j/99531222900?pwd=S1VDR2pRU2lyZ2hORmtObE1PcFh6Zz09

    Location: Hughes Aircraft Electrical Engineering Center (EEB) - 248

    WebCast Link: https://usc.zoom.us/j/99531222900?pwd=S1VDR2pRU2lyZ2hORmtObE1PcFh6Zz09

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Mayumi Thrasher

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  • CS Colloquium: Aishwarya Ganesan (VMware Research) - Consistency and Performance in Distributed Storage Systems

    Mon, Mar 28, 2022 @ 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

    Computer Science

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Aishwarya Ganesan , VMware Research

    Talk Title: Consistency and Performance in Distributed Storage Systems

    Series: CS Colloquium

    Abstract: Talk abstract: Computer systems underpin every modern application that we interact with today. When designing systems, one must often tradeoff strong guarantees for performance or vice-versa. The same tradeoff exists in distributed storage systems as well; designers must often choose consistency or performance. In this talk, I will show how we can build distributed storage systems that provide strong consistency yet also perform well. My key insight to achieving this goal is to defer enforcing consistency until state is externally visible. Based on this insight, I design two novel distributed storage systems.

    First, I present Skyros, a new replication protocol that exploits storage-interface properties to defer expensive coordination. Skyros realizes that many update interfaces are nil-externalizing: they do not expose system state immediately. By taking advantage of nil-externality, Skyros offers significantly lower latencies than traditional replication protocols while still providing strong consistency.

    Second, I present consistency-aware durability (CAD), a new durability primitive that enables stronger consistency. CAD shifts the point of durability from writes to reads. By delaying writes, CAD enables high performance; however, by ensuring durability before serving reads, CAD enables the construction of stronger consistency models.

    This lecture satisfies requirements for CSCI 591: Research Colloquium

    Biography: Aishwarya Ganesan is a postdoctoral researcher at VMware Research. She completed her PhD from the University of Wisconsin - Madison in Computer Sciences, advised by Andrea Arpaci-Dusseau and Remzi Arpaci-Dusseau. She is broadly interested in distributed systems and storage systems. Her work has been recognized with best-paper awards at FAST 20 and FAST 18 and a best paper award nomination at FAST 17. She was selected for the Rising Stars in EECS workshop and a recipient of Facebook 2019 PhD Fellowship. She also received the graduate student instructor award for teaching graduate-level distributed systems at UW Madison.

    Host: Ramesh Govindan

    Location: online only

    Audiences: By invitation only.

    Contact: Assistant to CS chair

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  • CS Colloquium: Souti Chattopadhyay (Oregon State University) - When cognition works against us! Transforming Software to reduce the cost of cognitive processes.

    Mon, Mar 28, 2022 @ 02:00 PM - 03:00 PM

    Computer Science

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Souti Chattopadhyay, Oregon State University

    Talk Title: When cognition works against us! Transforming Software to reduce the cost of cognitive processes.

    Series: CS Colloquium

    Abstract: 86 billion neurons make up our brains! Naturally, these 100 trillion neural connections give rise to a complex process of making decisions, interpreting information, and taking intended actions. This is especially true when programming, whether to build software systems or analyze data. Cognitive processes like selective interpretation and biases affect these programming decisions and actions frequently and significantly. In a recent study, we found that biases are associated with 45.7% of actions that developers take (like editing a line or navigating to a part of code). Eventually, developers reversed or undid 70% of the actions associated with biases which made up 25% of their entire worktime [1]. Similarly, data scientists report spending a lot of time in a "tortuous, multi-step adventure" for getting the data set up for analysis based on familiarity and preferences [2]. Programmers pay the necessary price of being human when working with tools without support for the negative impacts of cognitive processes. In this talk, I will present findings on how some cognitive processes affect programming. To reduce the friction between software and cognition, we will discuss how to design tools to be vigilant and provide desired support using automated and empirical approaches.


    This lecture satisfies requirements for CSCI 591: Research Colloquium


    Biography: Souti Chattopadhyay (Rini) is a Ph.D. candidate at Oregon State University in the Department of EECS. She works at the intersection of Human-Computer Interaction, Software Engineering, and Cognitive Science, focusing on assisting software engineers and data scientists.

    Her research is on human-centered tools and interfaces that align with the human cognitive processes when solving problems. Her work is focused on understanding how humans make decisions when interacting with interfaces, specifically programming interfaces. She studies developers, data scientists, and end-user programmers to identify the process behind their technical decisions and social interactions.

    During her internship at Microsoft Research, she worked on a project related to the next generation of developers, specifically how they express their identity on social media platforms like YouTube. Some of her works were awarded best papers and honorable mentions by ACM and IEEE, including understanding cognitive biases in programmers and exploring a plethora of challenges data scientists face. Her work on cognitive biases was also recognized as research highlights by CACM and that on data scientists was featured on Nature articles.


    Host: Chao Wang

    Location: Ronald Tutor Hall of Engineering (RTH) - 105

    Audiences: By invitation only.

    Contact: Assistant to CS chair

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  • Astani Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering Ph.D. Dissertation

    Mon, Mar 28, 2022 @ 02:00 PM - 04:00 PM

    Sonny Astani Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Maria Morvillo, Ph.D. Candidate, Viterbi School of Engineering- Astani Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering

    Talk Title: Reproducible and Rapid Computational Approaches for Assessing Contamination in Natural Aquifers

    Abstract: The ubiquitous presence of multi-scale heterogeneity in hydrological properties is the cause of complex subsurface flow patterns that impact the transport behavior of a solute plume. Fluctuations in the velocity field lead to increased solute spreading which enhances mass transfer mechanisms and impact solute arrival times. This thesis proposes a series of methods which accounts for the effects of aquifer heterogeneity on transport observables which are essential for risk analysis, performance assessment of waste disposal facilities and the selection of optimal remediation cleanup strategies. The approaches proposed in this dissertation are computationally rapid and reproducible. The first contribution of this thesis consists of the development of a novel aquifer connectivity-ranked Monte Carlo method that accelerates the statistical convergence of the statistics of the first arrival times of a solute body in an environmentally sensitive location. Secondly, I propose an innovative kernel-based reactive random walk particle tracking method to improve the computational efficiency associated with reactive transport in spatially variable groundwater flows. Finally, we present a computational package that links the various components relevant for the estimation of the concentration of a pollutant at an environmentally sensitive target and its uncertainty to support decision making in risk analysis.



    Host: Advisor, Dr. Felipe de Barros

    More Info: https://usc.zoom.us/j/96445541938

    Location: Zoom Meeting

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Evangeline Reyes

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  • GRIDS Alumni Industry Panel

    Mon, Mar 28, 2022 @ 07:00 PM - 08:00 PM

    Computer Science

    Student Activity


    Join us on Monday, March 28 at 7PM for the GRIDS Alumni Industry Panel! Hear from Haripriya Dharmsala (Software Engineer at Boeing), Seun Deleawe (Senior Data Engineer at MyDataProduct), and Iris Liu (System Devops Engineer at NVIDIA), and get an inside peek at the recruitment process, the first couple years on the job, and shifting jobs post-grad.

    Date: Monday, March 28
    Time: 7PM
    Location: SLH 100 (Stauffer Science Lecture Hall)

    Sign up here, so we can get an estimated headcount!
    https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLScY2rasv-sGDReJt16FJWSBC_ejpyh3ajzhPKXWQc2LyXOaqw/viewform

    More Information: gridsevent.png

    Location: John Stauffer Science Lecture Hall (SLH) - 100

    Audiences: Graduate

    Contact: GRIDS

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