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Events for the 1st week of April

  • EE-EP Faculty Candidate, Marina Radulaski, Monday, April 2nd at 12pm in EEB 132

    Mon, Apr 02, 2018 @ 12:00 PM - 01:30 PM

    Ming Hsieh Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Marina Radulaski, Stanford University

    Talk Title: Scalable Nanophotonics for Quantum and Classical Information Processing

    Abstract: Technological commodities of the 21st century come with exponential demands on information processing. While the electronic devices face physical limits of scalability, nanophotonics emerges as a leading solution for the Big Data manipulation. In the first part of the seminar, I will discuss the role of novel photonic architectures and robust device design algorithms in meeting the short-term classical hardware speedup goals. Moving toward the implementation of quantum information processing paradigms, I will evaluate applicability of color centers in silicon carbide and diamond to quantum computing, communication and cryptography. Finally, I will present advances in integration of color centers with nanoscale photonic devices serving as efficient quantum bits and quantum light sources.

    Biography: Marina Radulaski is a Nano- and Quantum Science and Engineering Postdoctoral Fellow at Stanford University's Ginzton Laboratory. She obtained a PhD in Applied Physics from Stanford University under the supervision of Prof. Jelena Vuckovic, a BSc/MSc in Physics from the University of Belgrade, Serbia, and a BSc/MSc in Computer Science from the Union University, Serbia. Marina was selected among the Rising Stars in EECS in 2017, Stanford Graduate Fellows 2012-2014, and Scientific American's "30-Under-30 Up and Coming Physicists" in 2012. She has performed research internationally at Berkeley Lab, Hewlett-Packard Labs, Oxford University, IQOQI Vienna, Helmholtz Center Berlin, and more. In addition to research, Marina enjoys building communities and promoting science through podcasts, videos and festivals.

    Host: EE-Electrophysics

    Location: Hughes Aircraft Electrical Engineering Center (EEB) - 132

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Marilyn Poplawski

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  • Biomedical Engineering Seminars

    Mon, Apr 02, 2018 @ 12:30 PM - 01:50 PM

    Biomedical Engineering

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Kathy Nightingale, PhD, Professor, Duke University

    Talk Title: Ultrasonic Elasticity Imaging with Acoustic Radiation Force

    Abstract: Elasticity imaging involves introducing a mechanical tissue perturbation, imaging the resulting tissue response, and generating images that reflect the underlying mechanical properties of the tissue. Acoustic radiation force impulse (ARFI) based ultrasonic elasticity imaging methods have become widely available in the clinical market over the past five years. To date, these methods have found success clinically in the context of hepatic fibrosis staging and breast lesion characterization, with many additional applications under investigation. A major focus our laboratory has been the development and implementation of high resolution ARFI elasticity imaging methods for prostate cancer imaging and treatment guidance, with initial in vivo findings demonstrating that ARFI imaging is specific for clinically significant prostate cancer. Commercially available ARFI methods that evaluate shear wave propagation to provide quantitative stiffness estimates generally assume that the tissues are linear, isotropic, elastic, homogeneous, and incompressible in order to reconstruct the underlying material stiffness. Our recent work in shear wave imaging focuses on understanding the sources of error in these systems, and developing methods that address some of the underlying assumptions, i.e. using 3D volumetric imaging to analyze material anisotropy, using multi-dimensional filters and two and three dimensional shear wave monitoring to improve image quality in structured media, and exploring different approaches to estimate shearwave dispersion. In this talk, I will review the underlying physics and discuss the promise and limitations of these methods.

    Biography: Dr. Nightingale is the James L. and Elizabeth M. Vincent Professor of Biomedical Engineering at Duke University, and she is the director of the Duke Medical Imaging Training Program. Her research interests include ultrasonic and elasticity imaging and instrumentation. She has pioneered the development and clinical translation of acoustic radiation force based elasticity imaging techniques. She is the author of over 75 peer-reviewed journal articles in the areas of ultrasound and elasticity imaging, and has been awarded 9 patents. She has been a recipient of the Klein Family Distinguished Teaching Award, and the Marion Capers Distinguished Research and Teaching Award at Duke University. She has served on numerous NIH and DOD review panels and is currently a charter member of the BMIT-B NIH study section. She is an Associate Editor for Ultrasonic Imaging, a senior member of IEEE, and a fellow of the American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering.

    Host: Professor Qifa Zhou

    Location: Olin Hall of Engineering (OHE) - 122

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Mischalgrace Diasanta

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  • Center for Systems and Control (CSC@USC) and Ming Hsieh Institute for Electrical Engineering

    Mon, Apr 02, 2018 @ 02:00 PM - 03:00 PM

    Ming Hsieh Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: TBA, TBA

    Talk Title: TBA

    Series: Joint CSC@USC/CommNetS-MHI Seminar Series

    Abstract: TBA

    Biography: TBA

    Host: Mihailo Jovanovic, mihailo@usc.edu

    Location: Hughes Aircraft Electrical Engineering Center (EEB) - 132

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Gerrielyn Ramos

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  • EE Seminar - Robust Model-Free Control, Optimization, and Learning in Cyber-Physical Societal Systems

    Mon, Apr 02, 2018 @ 02:00 PM - 03:00 PM

    Ming Hsieh Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Jorge I. Poveda, University of California, Santa Barbara

    Talk Title: Robust Model-Free Control, Optimization, and Learning in Cyber-Physical Societal Systems

    Abstract: The deployment of advanced real-time control and optimization strategies in socially-integrated engineering systems could significantly improve our quality of life while creating jobs and economic opportunity. However, in cyber-physical systems such as smart grids, transportation networks, healthcare, and robotic systems, there still exist several challenges that prevent the implementation of intelligent control strategies. These challenges include the existence of limited communication networks, dynamic environments, multiple decision makers interacting with the system, and complex hybrid dynamics emerging from the feedback interconnection of physical processes and computational devices. In this talk, I will present a set of tools for the analysis and design of model-free feedback mechanisms that can cope with these challenges, and that are suitable for the real-time control and optimization of cyber-physical societal systems. The first part of the talk will focus on the problem of designing a class of robust model-free adaptive pricing mechanisms for systems such as the smart grids, transportation networks, and the Internet, where users behave in a selfish way, and where the objective of the social planner is to maximize the total welfare of the system. Next, I will show that this problem belongs to a broader family of model-free extremization problems, and I will present a general framework for the design of a family of algorithms that can successfully optimize the performance of cyber-physical systems having unknown mathematical models. Finally, I will illustrate how these results can be extended to achieve distributed control of large-scale autonomous systems by implementing novel robust coordination and synchronization feedback mechanisms. The talk will finish by discussing some future directions and preliminary results in the areas of data-driven hybrid control and security in stochastic learning dynamics.

    Biography: Jorge I. Poveda is a Ph.D. Candidate at the Center for Control, Dynamical Systems, and Computation (CCDC) at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He received the B.S. degrees in Electronics Engineering and Mechanical Engineering in 2012, and the M.S. degree (Magna Cum Laude) in Electrical Engineering in 2013, all from University of Los Andes, Bogota, Colombia, and the M.S. degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University of California, Santa Barbara, USA, in 2015. He was a Research Intern with the Mitsubishi Electric Research Laboratories in Cambridge, MA, during the summers of 2016 and 2017. He received the 2013 CCDC Outstanding Scholar Fellowship at UCSB, and was a finalist for the Best Student Paper Award at the 56th IEEE Conference on Decision and Control in 2017. His main research interests lie at the intersection of robust feedback control theory, adaptive control, online optimization, and game theory, with applications to cyber-physical and societal systems.

    Host: Ashutosh Nayyar, ashutosn@usc.edu

    Location: Hughes Aircraft Electrical Engineering Center (EEB) - 132

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Mayumi Thrasher

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  • Series of Lectures

    Tue, Apr 03, 2018 @ 10:00 AM - 12:00 PM

    Sonny Astani Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Dr. Thanasis Fokas,

    Talk Title: New development in unified transform (Fokas Method, www.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fokas_method).

    Abstract: Prof Fokas will give a series of lectures on new development in unified transform (Fokas Method, www.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fokas_method) including applications in water waves with moving boundaries, elliptic PDEs in curved domains and PDEs with variable coefficients. The first two lectures will be in KAP 209 Tuesday, April 3, 2018.

    Session #1: from 10am to Noon
    Session #2: from 3pm to 5pm


    Location: Kaprielian Hall (KAP) - 209

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Evangeline Reyes

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  • Epstein Institute Seminar, ISE 651

    Tue, Apr 03, 2018 @ 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

    Daniel J. Epstein Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Dr. Sham Kakade, Associate Professor, University of Washington

    Talk Title: Accelerating Stochastic Gradient Descent for Convex and Non-Convex Optimization

    Host: Dr. Meisam Razaviyayn

    More Information: April 3, 2018_Kakade.pdf

    Location: Ethel Percy Andrus Gerontology Center (GER) - 206

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Grace Owh

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  • CS Colloquium: Nicolas Papernot (Pennsylvania State University) - Characterizing the Space of Adversarial Examples in Machine Learning

    Tue, Apr 03, 2018 @ 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

    Computer Science

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Nicolas Papernot, Pennsylvania State University

    Talk Title: Characterizing the Space of Adversarial Examples in Machine Learning

    Series: CS Colloquium

    Abstract: There is growing recognition that machine learning (ML) exposes new security and privacy vulnerabilities in software systems, yet the technical community's understanding of the nature and extent of these vulnerabilities remains limited but expanding. In this talk, I explore the threat model space of ML algorithms, and systematically explore the vulnerabilities resulting from the poor generalization of ML models when they are presented with inputs manipulated by adversaries. This characterization of the threat space prompts an investigation of defenses that exploit the lack of reliable confidence estimates for predictions made. In particular, we introduce a promising new approach to defensive measures tailored to the structure of deep learning. Through this research, we expose connections between the resilience of ML to adversaries, model interpretability, and training data privacy.

    This lecture satisfies requirements for CSCI 591: Research Colloquium. Please note, due to limited capacity, seats will be first come first serve.


    Biography: Nicolas Papernot is a PhD student in Computer Science and Engineering working with Professor Patrick McDaniel at the Pennsylvania State University. His research interests lie at the intersection of computer security, privacy and machine learning. He is supported by a Google PhD Fellowship in Security and received a best paper award at ICLR 2017. He is also the co-author of CleverHans, an open-source library widely adopted in the technical community to benchmark machine learning in adversarial settings. In 2016, he received his M.S. in Computer Science and Engineering from the Pennsylvania State University and his M.S. in Engineering Sciences from the Ecole Centrale de Lyon.

    Host: Aleksandra Korolova

    Location: Olin Hall of Engineering (OHE) - 100D

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Assistant to CS chair

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  • EE Seminar - Embracing Uncertainty: from Differential Privacy to Generative Adversarial Privacy

    Tue, Apr 03, 2018 @ 02:00 PM - 03:00 PM

    Ming Hsieh Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Peter Kairouz, Postdoctoral Scholar, Stanford University

    Talk Title: Embracing Uncertainty: from Differential Privacy to Generative Adversarial Privacy

    Abstract: The explosive growth in connectivity and data collection is accelerating the use of machine learning to guide consumers through a myriad of choices and decisions. While this vision is expected to generate many disruptive businesses and social opportunities, it presents one of the biggest threats to privacy in recent history. In response to this threat, differential privacy (DP) has recently surfaced as a context-free, robust, and mathematically rigorous notion of privacy.

    The first part of my talk will focus on understanding the fundamental tradeoff between DP and utility for a variety of learning applications. Surprisingly, our results show the universal optimality of a family of extremal privacy mechanisms called staircase mechanisms. While the vast majority of early works on DP have focused on using the Laplace mechanism, our results indicate that it is often strictly suboptimal and can be replaced by a staircase mechanism to improve utility. Our results also show that the strong privacy guarantees of DP often come at a significant loss in utility.

    The second part of my talk is motivated by the following question: can we exploit data statistics to achieve a better privacy-utility tradeoff? To address this question, I will present a novel context-aware notion of privacy called generative adversarial privacy (GAP). GAP leverages recent advancements in generative adversarial networks (GANs) to arrive to a unified framework for data-driven privacy that has deep game-theoretic and information-theoretic roots. I will conclude my talk by showcasing the performance of GAP on real life datasets.


    Biography: Peter Kairouz is a postdoctoral scholar at Stanford University. He received his PhD in ECE from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC). He interned twice at Qualcomm and more recently at Google where he designed privacy-aware machine learning algorithms. He is the recipient of the 2015 ACM SIGMETRICS Best Paper Award, the 2012 Roberto Padovani Scholarship from Qualcomm's Research Center, and the 2016 Harold L. Olesen Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching from UIUC. His research interests are interdisciplinary and span the areas of data and network sciences, privacy-preserving data analysis, machine learning, and information theory.

    Host: Keith Chugg, chugg@usc.edu

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

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Mayumi Thrasher

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  • Epstein Institute Seminar, ISE 651

    Tue, Apr 03, 2018 @ 03:30 PM - 04:50 PM

    Daniel J. Epstein Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Dr. Christopher Williams, Associate Professor, Virginia Tech

    Talk Title: Additive Manufacturing of Multifunctional Products via Tailored Materials and Topologies

    Host: Dr. Yong Chen

    More Information: April 3, 2018_Williams.pdf

    Location: Ethel Percy Andrus Gerontology Center (GER) - 206

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Grace Owh

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  • Robust Classification and Change Detection for Brain-Computer Interfaces

    Wed, Apr 04, 2018 @ 02:00 AM - 03:00 PM

    Ming Hsieh Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Vahid Tarokh, Duke University

    Talk Title: Robust Classification and Change Detection for Brain-Computer Interfaces

    Series: Center for Cyber-Physical Systems and Internet of Things

    Abstract: In this talk, we will first discuss eye movement decoding in a working memory experiment involving a macaque monkey. Our objective is to use the local field potentials (LFPs) collected from the brain of the monkey to decode the type of task that the monkey is doing, and the direction of saccade in each task. We will show that the LFP time-series data can be modeled using a nonparametric regression framework, and show that the classifiers trained using minimax function estimators as features are robust and consistent. We will also discuss application of the resulting classifier to the brain data.

    We will then briefly discuss the problem of change detection apply it to spike data from a mice experiment collected using cues and electric shocks.

    This is a joint work with Taposh Banerjee.

    Biography: Vahid Tarokh is Rhodes Family Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Professor of Mathematics, and Computer Science at Duke University. He worked at AT&T Labs-Research until 2000, and subsequently at MIT (as an Associate Professor of EECS) until 2002. He joined Harvard University as Perkins Professor of Applied Mathematics and Hammond Vinton Hayes Senior Fellow of Electrical Engineering. He then joined Duke University in January 2018. His current research focuses on statistical signal processing and applications. Dr. Tarokh has received a number of awards, and holds four honorary degrees.

    Host: Prof. Paul Bogdan

    Location: Hughes Aircraft Electrical Engineering Center (EEB) - 132

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Talyia White

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  • System Engineering Research Center (SERC) Talks

    Wed, Apr 04, 2018 @ 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM

    Systems Architecting and Engineering, USC Viterbi School of Engineering

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Robin Yeman, Lockheed Martin Fellow

    Talk Title: How do Agile Methods Reduce Risk Exposure and Improve Security on Highly-Critical Systems

    Series: SERC Talks

    Abstract: With each passing year software continues to grow and every industry regardless of their product uses software as an integral part of their value stream. That phenomenon is especially true in the government space where we deliver highly- critical systems such as aircraft, unmanned systems, missiles & guided weapons, and human space flight vehicles. Highly regulated environments not only require high quality low risk deliveries; they need to be secure. I believe using Agile methods will provide exactly that.

    Depending on individual experiences and varying context some projects continue to see Agile methods as risky however various studies and journals such as IEEE have shown Agile methods to deliver results in areas of quality, cost, and schedule across the commercial and government industries. Agile practices can be leveraged to improve the level of security in our systems and reduce our risk exposure while the Internet of Things (IoT) continues to expand our system attack surfaces. In this presentation, we will discuss
    • The difference between Agile and traditional Waterfall
    • How Agile practices enable security to be embedded in our systems from the start
    • Where security is inserted throughout all stages of the SDLC
    • Define the art of the possible for the future.

    SERC Talks is an open forum discussion series featuring researchers from our community sharing their insights on various questions relevant to Systems Engineering (SE) and its evolution. Dr. Barry Boehm is our Editor-in-Chief of the series, curating the Talks. We encourage your input and insights during these lively discussions online as we strive to create an ongoing and more collaborative dialogue between academia, government and industry sectors of the SE community.

    Biography: Robin Yeman works for Lockheed Martin (LM) Information Systems and Global Solution in Northern Virginia as a Lockheed Martin Fellow. She has over 23 years of experience in software and IT, across multiple business areas building everything from Satellites to Submarines. She has been actively supporting and leading Agile programs at Scale both domestically and internationally for the last 15 years with multiple certifications including Scaled Agile Program Consultant, Certified Enterprise Coach (CEC), CSP, CSM, CSPO, PSM, PMP, PMI-ACP, INCOSE Certified Systems Engineer, and ITIL Practitioner. She actively coaches and trains teams through in person coaching, Agile workshops, virtual training classes. She leads the Lockheed Martins Agile Community of Practice and Center of Excellence, speaks at multiple conference engagements each year. Robin received her Masters Degree in Software Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

    Host: Prof. Barry Boehm for the Systems Engineering Research Center

    More Info: http://www.sercuarc.org/events/serc-talks-how-do-agile-methods-reduce-risk-exposure-and-improve-security-on-highly-critical-systems/

    Webcast: Event Password: SERC

    Location: Online via WebEX

    WebCast Link: Event Password: SERC

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: James Moore II

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  • 2018 Cornelius Pings Lecture

    Wed, Apr 04, 2018 @ 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

    Mork Family Department of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science, USC Viterbi School of Engineering

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Charles Fairhurst, Professor Emeritus, University of Minnesota

    Talk Title: Earth Resources Engineering - An Emerging Field

    Series: Pings Keynote Lecture Series

    Abstract: The term Earth Resource Engineering was Introduced by the US National Academy of Engineering in 2006 to encompass the traditional extractive discIplines of Petroleum, Mining and Geological Engineering plus newer applications - such as long-term isolation of high-level nuclear waste. This
    recognized the unique ability of the rock subsurface to isolate the biosphere from toxic contaminants for millennia. A considerable number of additional uses. both shallow and deep. have since been introduced and/or proposed. These will be described briefly. The lecture will focus on some of the specific challenges in mechanics arising in rock engineering. Evolving over several billion years. the
    structural make-up of the subsurface is far more complex than materials encountered in most other branches of engineering. This dictates a different engineering methodology. Thus. although continuum mechanics plays a valuable role in rock engineering, discontinuities, anisotropy, and heterogeneity -Iarge and small scale- must be recognized and considered.
    A few examples, including efforts to increase advance rates in tunneling "by a factor of ten". will be provided to illustrate the challenges, and the potential for interdisciplinary collaboration. Introduction of Earth Resource Engineering programs at leading research universities would stimulate such collaboration and advances.

    MEET & GREET RECEPTION
    HED 1st Floor Lobby
    10AM



    Host: Professor and Chair Richard Roberts

    More Information: USC-2018PingsLecture.pdf

    Location: Henry Salvatori Computer Science Center (SAL) - 101

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Breanne Grady

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  • Computer Science General Faculty Meeting

    Wed, Apr 04, 2018 @ 12:00 PM - 01:30 PM

    Computer Science

    Receptions & Special Events


    Bi-Weekly regular faculty meeting for invited full-time Computer Science faculty only. Event details emailed directly to attendees.

    Location: 101 - Michelson Building

    Audiences: By invitation only.

    Contact: Assistant to CS chair

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  • Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering Seminar

    Wed, Apr 04, 2018 @ 03:30 PM - 04:30 PM

    Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Alex H. Barnett, Group Leader, Numerical Algorithms, Center for Computational Biology Flatiron Institute (Simons Foundation), New York, NY

    Talk Title: Building a Better Nonuniform Fast Fourier Transform

    Abstract: The NUFFT allows Fourier analysis of data on non-uniform points at close-to-FFT speeds. It has many applications in science and engineering. I will explain what happens "under the hood" in our new implementation (FINUFFT). This includes 1) a simpler spreading kernel that accelerates run-times for the same accuracy, while preserving a rigorous error analysis, and 2) smart multi-threading. Along the way we will discover how the nationally known bluegrass fiddler Tex Logan fits into the story. Joint work with Jeremy Magland.

    Biography: Alex Barnett is an applied mathematician and numerical analyst. He was a faculty member in the mathematics department at Dartmouth College for 12 years, becoming a full professor in 2017. He obtained his Ph.D. in physics at Harvard University, followed by a postdoctoral fellowship in radiology at Massachusetts General Hospital and a Courant Instructorship at New York University. His research interests include scientific computing, partial differential equations, integral equations, biomedical imaging, neuroscience, inverse problems and quantum chaos. Barnett is well known for numerical work in wave scattering, high-frequency eigenvalues, potential theory, periodic geometries and fast algorithms. He has received several grants from the National Science Foundation, and Dartmouth's Karen E. Wetterhahn Memorial Award for Distinguished Creative or Scholarly Achievement.

    Host: Department of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering

    Location: Seaver Science Library (SSL) - 150

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Ashleen Knutsen

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  • CAIS Seminar: Dr. Paul Rosenbloom (USC) – A Cognitive Architectural Perspective on the Past, Present and Future of AI

    Wed, Apr 04, 2018 @ 04:00 PM - 05:00 PM

    Computer Science

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Dr. Paul Rosenbloom, USC

    Talk Title: A Cognitive Architectural Perspective on the Past, Present and Future of AI

    Series: USC Center for Artificial Intelligence in Society (CAIS) Seminar Series

    Abstract: In this talk Dr. Rosenbloom will briefly introduce and explore the notion of a cognitive architecture, as a hypothesis about the fixed structures that define a mind and yield intelligent behavior when combined with knowledge and skills, and then step back to discuss the current AI era, the history of AI (in terms of past eras), and some of what is coming. He will also touch on a selection of both social and ethical issues with respect to AI.

    This lecture satisfies requirements for CSCI 591: Research Colloquium


    Biography: Dr. Paul Rosenbloom is a Professor of Computer Science at USC and Director for Cognitive Architecture Research at USC's Institute for Creative Technologies. His research concentrates on cognitive architecture-“ integrated models of the fixed structures underlying minds-“and on understanding the nature, structure and stature of computing as a scientific domain and its overlap with the other domains of human study. He is a Fellow of the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence, the Association for the Advancement of Science, and the Cognitive Science Society.


    Host: Milind Tambe

    Location: Seeley Wintersmith Mudd Memorial Hall (of Philosophy) (MHP) - 101

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Computer Science Department

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  • ASTE & AME Alumni & Industry Spotlight

    Wed, Apr 04, 2018 @ 07:00 PM - 08:00 PM

    Viterbi School of Engineering Career Connections

    Workshops & Infosessions


    Students will hear from alumni and industry professionals regarding their academic/professional experiences.

    Location: Ronald Tutor Hall of Engineering (RTH) - 211

    Audiences: Undergrad

    Contact: RTH 218 Viterbi Career Connections

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  • EE Seminar - Beyond Binary Failures in Networks

    Thu, Apr 05, 2018 @ 10:00 AM - 11:00 AM

    Ming Hsieh Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Monia Ghobadi, Researcher, Microsoft Research Mobility and Networking

    Talk Title: Beyond Binary Failures in Networks

    Abstract: Fiber optic cables are the workhorses of today's Internet services, but they are an expensive resource and require significant monetary investment. Their importance has driven a conservative deployment approach with redundancy baked into multiple layers of the network under the assumption that links have a constant reliability status and operate at a fixed capacity. In this talk, I take an unconventional approach and argue that link failures should not be always considered binary events; this approach enables the foundation of a framework for network links with dynamic capacity and reliability. I investigated this idea by conducting the first ever large-scale study of operational optical signals, analyzing over 2,000 channels in a wide-area network for a period of three years, as well as 350,000 links in 20 data center networks worldwide. My analysis uncovered several findings that enable cross-layer optimizations and smart algorithms to improve traffic engineering, increase capacity, and reduce cost. First, the capacity of 99% of wide-area links can be augmented by at least 50 Gbps, leading to an overall capacity gain of more than 100 Tbps. This means we get higher capacity and better availability using the same links. Second, I will show that 99.99% of data center links have an incoming optical power level that is higher than the design threshold; by allowing links to have multiple reliability levels, we can cut the cost of data center networks by nearly half. Finally, the framework opens the door to revisiting several classical networking problems, such as the maximum-flow problem and graph abstractions. Microsoft has invested in this new framework and is rolling out the necessary infrastructure for deployment.

    Biography: Monia Ghobadi is a researcher at the Microsoft Research Mobility and Networking research group. Prior to MSR, she was a software engineer at Google. She received her Ph.D. in Computer Science at the University of Toronto and B.Eng. in Computer Engineering at the Sharif University of Technology. Monia is a computer systems researcher with a networking focus and has worked on a broad set of topics, including data center networking, optical networks, transport protocols, network measurement, and hardware-software co-design. Many of the technologies she has helped develop are part of real-world systems at Microsoft and Google. Monia was recognized as an N2women rising star in networking and communications in 2017. Her work has won the best dataset award, Google research excellent paper award (twice), and the ACM IMC best paper award.

    Host: Konstantinos Psounis, kpsounis@usc.edu

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

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Mayumi Thrasher

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  • Landscape of Practical Blockchain Systems and their Applications

    Thu, Apr 05, 2018 @ 02:00 PM - 03:00 PM

    Ming Hsieh Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Chandrasekaran Mohan, IBM Almaden Research Center

    Talk Title: Landscape of Practical Blockchain Systems and their Applications

    Series: Center for Cyber-Physical Systems and Internet of Things

    Abstract: The concept of a distributed ledger was invented as the underlying technology of the public or permissionless Bitcoin cryptocurrency network. But the adoption and further adaptation of it for use in the private or permissioned environments is what I consider to be of practical consequence and hence only such private blockchain systems will be the focus of this talk.

    Computer companies like IBM, Intel, Oracle, Baidu and Microsoft, and many key players in different vertical industry segments have recognized the applicability of blockchains in environments other than cryptocurrencies. IBM did some pioneering work by architecting and implementing Fabric, and then open sourcing it. Now Fabric is being enhanced via the Hyperledger Consortium as part of The Linux Foundation. A couple of the other efforts include Enterprise Ethereum, Sawtooth and R3 Corda.

    While currently there is no standard in the private blockchain space, all the ongoing efforts involve some combination of database, transaction, encryption, virtualization, consensus and other distributed systems technologies. Some of the application areas in which blockchain pilots are being carried out are: smart contracts, derivatives processing, e-governance, Know Your Customer (KYC), healthcare, supply chain management and provenance management.

    In this talk, I will describe some use-case scenarios, especially those in production deployment. I will also survey the landscape of private blockchain systems with respect to their architectures in general and their approaches to some specific technical areas. I will also discuss some of the opportunities that exist and the challenges that need to be addressed. Since most of the blockchain efforts are still in a nascent state, the time is right for mainstream database and distributed systems researchers and practitioners to get more deeply involved to focus on the numerous open problems.

    An earlier version of this talk was delivered as the opening keynote at the 37th IEEE International Conference on Distributed Computing Systems (ICDCS) in Atlanta (USA) on 6 June 2017. Extensive blockchain related collateral can be found at http://bit.ly/CMbcDB


    Biography: Dr. C. Mohan has been an IBM researcher for 36 years in the database and related areas, impacting numerous IBM and non-IBM products, the research and academic communities, and standards, especially with his invention of the ARIES family of database locking and recovery algorithms, and the Presumed Abort distributed commit protocol. This IBM (1997), and ACM and IEEE (2002) Fellow has also served as the IBM India Chief Scientist for 3 years (2006-2009). In addition to receiving the ACM SIGMOD Innovations Award (1996), the VLDB 10 Year Best Paper Award (1999) and numerous IBM awards, Mohan was elected to the US and Indian National Academies of Engineering (2009) and named an IBM Master Inventor (1997). This Distinguished Alumnus of IIT Madras (1977) received his PhD at the University of Texas at Austin (1981). He is an inventor of 50 patents. He is currently focused on Blockchain, Big Data and HTAP technologies (http://bit.ly/CMbcDB, http://bit.ly/CMgMDS). Since 2016, he has been a Distinguished Visiting Professor of China's prestigious Tsinghua University. He has served on the advisory board of IEEE Spectrum, and on numerous conference and journal boards. Mohan is a frequent speaker in North America, Europe and India, and has given talks in 40 countries. He is very active on social media and has a huge network of followers. More information can be found in the Wikipedia page at http://bit.ly/CMwIkP

    Host: Prof. Paul Bogdan

    Location: Michelson Center for Convergent Bioscience (MCB) - 101

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Talyia White

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  • EE Seminar - A System Level Approach to the Design of Robust Autonomous Systems

    Thu, Apr 05, 2018 @ 03:00 PM - 04:00 PM

    Ming Hsieh Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Nikolai Matni, Postdoctoral Scholar, Dept of EECS, UC Berkeley

    Talk Title: A System Level Approach to the Design of Robust Autonomous Systems

    Abstract: As the systems we build and the environments that they operate in become more complex, first-principle modeling becomes either impossible, impractical, or intractable, motivating the use of machine learning techniques for their control. As impressive as the empirical success of these methods appears to be on stylized test-cases, strong theoretical guarantees of performance, safety, or robustness are few and far between; however, such guarantees are essential when data-driven methods are applied to safety-critical systems or infrastructures. In the first part of this talk, we make concrete steps towards developing performance and stability guarantees in the data-driven setting by considering a classical problem from the optimal control literature, the Linear Quadratic Regulator (LQR), with the added twist that now the system dynamics are unknown. We provide, to the best of our knowledge, the first end-to-end baselines for learning and control in an LQR problem that do not require restrictive or unrealistic assumptions. A key technical tool used in deriving this result is our recently developed System Level Approach (SLA) to Controller Synthesis. The SLA provides a transparent connection between system structure, constraints, and uncertainty and their effects on controller synthesis, implementation, and performance -” we exploit these properties to combine results from contemporary high-dimensional statistics and robust controller synthesis in a way that is amenable to non-asymptotic analysis. We then show how the solution to the "Learning-LQR" problem can be incorporated into an adaptive polynomial-time algorithm that achieves sub-linear regret. In the second part of this talk, we discuss how we can extend these ideas to large-scale data-driven autonomous systems, which encompass future incarnations of the smart-grid, intelligent transportation systems and software-defined networks. In this large-scale distributed setting, an additional challenge must be addressed: even when the system model is exactly known, designing robust systems with optimal performance guarantees is a challenging task. We show how the SLA allows for localized optimal controllers to be synthesized using convex programming, thus extending the performance and robustness guarantees of optimal/robust control, under mild and practically relevant assumptions, to systems of arbitrary size. We illustrate the usefulness of this approach with a frequency regulation problem in the power-grid, and show how it can be used to systematically explore tradeoffs in controller performance, robustness, and synthesis/implementation complexity. We conclude with our vision for a contemporary theory of autonomy and data-driven control, and outline ongoing efforts in extending the previous results to incorporate the guarantees of other learning and control paradigms, such as model predictive control and experiment design.

    Biography: Nikolai is a postdoctoral scholar in EECS at UC Berkeley working with Benjamin Recht. Prior to that, he was a postdoctoral scholar in Computing and Mathematical Sciences at the California Institute of Technology. He received the B.A.Sc. and M.A.Sc. in Electrical Engineering from the University of British Columbia, and the Ph.D. in Control and Dynamical Systems from the California Institute of Technology in June 2016 under the advisement of John C. Doyle. His research interests broadly encompass the use of learning, layering, dynamics, control and optimization in the design and analysis of large-scale data-driven cyber-physical systems. He was awarded the IEEE CDC 2013 Best Student Paper Award, the IEEE ACC 2017 Best Student Paper Award (as co-advisor), and was an Everhart Lecture Series speaker at Caltech.

    Host: Mihailo Jovanovic, mihailo@usc.edu

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

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Mayumi Thrasher

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  • SHPE's Membership Appreciation Dinner

    Thu, Apr 05, 2018 @ 07:00 PM - 12:00 AM

    Viterbi School of Engineering Student Organizations

    Student Activity


    Come celebrate the success of the SHPE familia at our first ever banquet. This event will be a formal (cocktail attire) dinner followed by dancing. Our corporate sponsors, alumni, and undergraduates from Region 2 are all invited. Dean Yortsos has already RSVPed, have you? More information to come, RSVP here: http://evite.me/t2ZwAUqjNR. Cost of attendance is $10 for USC undergraduates, $15 for all other undergraduates, and $20 for alumni and corporate sponsors. Payments can be done via Venmo to our treasurer @Maria-Camasmie. Email shpeusc@gmail.com with any questions or concerns. We hope to see everyone there! RSVP soon as spots will fill up.

    Location: Ronald Tutor Campus Center (TCC) - Ballroom

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers

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  • SHPE's Membership Appreciation Dinner

    Thu, Apr 05, 2018 @ 11:00 PM - 12:00 PM

    Viterbi School of Engineering Student Organizations

    Student Activity


    Come celebrate the success of the SHPE familia at our first ever banquet. This event will be a formal (cocktail attire) dinner followed by dancing. Our corporate sponsors, alumni, and undergraduates from Region 2 are all invited. Dean Yortsos has already RSVPed, have you? More information to come, RSVP here: http://evite.me/t2ZwAUqjNR. Cost of attendance is $10 for USC undergraduates, $15 for all other undergraduates, and $20 for alumni and corporate sponsors. Payments can be done via Venmo to our treasurer @Maria-Camasmie. Email shpeusc@gmail.com with any questions or concerns. We hope to see everyone there! RSVP soon as spots will fill up.

    Location: Ballroom

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers

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  • Final Drop Deadline

    Fri, Apr 06, 2018

    Viterbi School of Engineering Student Affairs

    University Calendar


    Last day to drop a class with mark of "W" for Spring 2018.

    https://arr.usc.edu/calendar/

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Sheryl Koutsis

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

    Fri, Apr 06, 2018 @ 11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

    Viterbi School of Engineering Undergraduate Admission

    University Calendar


    This half day program is designed for prospective freshmen (HS juniors 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!

    RSVP

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

    Audiences: Prospective Freshmen (HS Juniors and Younger) & Family Members

    Contact: Viterbi Admission

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  • W.V.T. RUSCH ENGINEERING HONORS COLLOQUIUM

    Fri, Apr 06, 2018 @ 01:00 PM - 01:50 PM

    USC Viterbi School of Engineering

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Dr. Gary Cruz, Director of Academic Affairs & University Relations, Great Minds in STEM

    Talk Title: STEM Promotion in Underrepresented Communities and Opportunities for Students

    Host: Dr. Prata & EHP

    Location: Henry Salvatori Computer Science Center (SAL) - 101

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Su Stevens

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  • EE-EP Faculty Candidate, Shimeng Yu, Friday, April 6th at 2pm in EEB 132

    Fri, Apr 06, 2018 @ 02:00 PM - 03:30 PM

    Ming Hsieh Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Shimeng Yu, Arizona State University

    Talk Title: Neuro-Inspired Computing with Resistive Synaptic Devices

    Abstract: Resistive device is a two-terminal electronic device based on oxides/chalcogenides that can switch its resistance under programming voltage. This technology has made significant progresses in the past decade as a competitive candidate for the next generation non-volatile memory (NVM), namely resistive random access memory (RRAM). In this presentation, I will discuss its new applications in the context of neuro-inspired computing, as it has a great potential to serve as the synaptic devices in the neuromorphic hardware such as machine/deep learning accelerators. First, I will discuss the desired characteristics of the resistive synaptic devices (e.g. analog multilevel states, weight tuning linearity, variation/noises) and oscillation neuron devices, and show the representative device prototypes of offline training and online training. Next, I will introduce the crossbar array architecture to efficiently implement the weighted sum and weight update operations that are commonly used in the machine/deep learning algorithms, and show the array-level experimental demonstrations for these key operations such as the convolution kernel. Then I will introduce "NeuroSim", a device-circuit-algorithm co-design framework to evaluate the impact of non-ideal device effects on the neuromorphic system performance (i.e. learning accuracy) and trade-offs in the circuit-level performance (i.e. area, latency, energy). Last, I propose to possible future research directions including new materials and device engineering for achieving linear weight update, binarizing neural network algorithm by allowing binary memory cells and our efforts in chip-scale tape-out of a XNOR-Net accelerator with SRAM and heterogeneous integration of RRAM on top of CMOS. This presentation will be concluded with a holistic view of my research vision from materials/device engineering, and circuit/architecture co-optimization for neuro-inspired computing with emerging nanoelectronic devices.

    Biography: Shimeng Yu received the B.S. degree in microelectronics from Peking University, Beijing, China in 2009, and the M.S. degree and Ph.D. degree in electrical engineering from Stanford University, Stanford, CA, USA in 2011, and in 2013, respectively. He is currently an assistant professor of electrical engineering and computer engineering at Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ, USA.
    His research interests are emerging nano-devices and circuits with a focus on the resistive memories for different applications including machine/deep learning, neuromorphic computing, monolithic 3D integration, hardware security, radiation-hard electronics, etc. He has published >70 journal papers and >100 conference papers with citations >5500 and H-index 34.
    Among his honors, he is a recipient of the DOD-DTRA Young Investigator Award in 2015, the NSF Faculty Early CAREER Award in 2016, the ASU Fulton Outstanding Assistant Professor in 2017 and the IEEE Electron Devices Society Early Career Award in 2017.
    He served the Technical Program Committee for IEEE International Symposium on Circuits and Systems (ISCAS) 2015-2017, ACM/IEEE Design Automation Conference (DAC) 2017-2018, and IEEE International Electron Devices Meeting (IEDM) 2017-2018, etc.

    Host: EE-Electrophysics

    Location: Hughes Aircraft Electrical Engineering Center (EEB) - 132

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Marilyn Poplawski

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  • Astani Civil and Environmental Engineering Seminar

    Fri, Apr 06, 2018 @ 03:00 PM - 04:00 PM

    Sonny Astani Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Prof. George Wells, Northwestern University

    Talk Title: Biotechnology and Microbial Ecology

    Abstract: TBA

    Location: Ray R. Irani Hall (RRI) - 101

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Evangeline Reyes

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  • Astani Civil and Environmental Engineering Seminar

    Fri, Apr 06, 2018 @ 03:00 PM - 04:00 PM

    Sonny Astani Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering

    Conferences, Lectures, & Seminars


    Speaker: Dr. George Wells, Louis Berger Junior Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Northwestern University

    Talk Title: The Promise and Peril of DPAOs: Probing Propensity and Mechanisms for Nitrous Oxide Generation by Denitrifying Polyphosphate Accumulating Bacteria

    Abstract: See attachment

    Host: Dr. Adam Smith

    More Information: George Wells Announcement 4-6-2018.pdf

    Location: Ray R. Irani Hall (RRI) - 101

    Audiences: Everyone Is Invited

    Contact: Evangeline Reyes

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  • Denver, CO - Admitted Student Program

    Sat, Apr 07, 2018 @ 02:00 PM - 04:00 PM

    Viterbi School of Engineering Undergraduate Admission

    University Calendar


    These Admitted Student Programs, hosted by the Undergraduate Admission Office, provide admitted students and their families an opportunity to meet admission counselors, representatives from academic departments, alumni, and you will have the opportunity to meet other admitted students from your local area. Viterbi and University Admission counselors will be there to answer any questions you might have, tell you more about campus life and your specific academic program, and welcome you to the Trojan Family. The program will last approximately two hours.

    We love seeing our newly admitted students in person! if you live in or near a city we will be visiting, we encourage you to join us!

    RSVP

    Location: Embassy Suites by Hilton Denver Downtown, 1420 Stout Street

    Audiences: Admitted Students and Their Families

    Contact: Viterbi Admission

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