Logo: University of Southern California

Frontiers Symposium

July 15, 2005 —

Computer scientist Cyrus Shahabi, who specializes in databases and information management, will be among the 88 young engineers nationwide attending this year’s National Academy of Engineering (NAE) “Frontiers of Engineering” symposium.

Cyrus Shahabi

The three-day conference, to be held Sept. 22-24 at GE Global Research Center in Niskayuna, N.Y., brings together young engineers ages 30 to 45 who are performing cutting-edge engineering research and technical work in a variety of disciplines.  The participants — from industry, academia and government — were nominated by fellow engineers or organizations and chosen from a pool of 220 applicants.  

"Significant advances in engineering are occurring where disciplines intersect," said NAE President Willam A. Wulf. "Frontiers of Engineering provides an opportunity for engineers to learn about techniques and challenges in areas other than their own. This new knowledge can spark insights and collaborations that might not have occurred otherwise."

Shahabi, who won a coveted Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE) in 2003, specializes in the fields of multidimensional, geospatial, multimedia and networked databases.  These technologies enable management and analysis of non-traditional data using atypical architectures.
Shahabi is currently at work on one data architecture to enable efficient access and statistical analysis of large amounts of multidimensional data. The system is called ProDA, for “Progressive Data Analysis.”  The unique characteristic of ProDA is its use of “wavelets” for efficient query and analysis of large multidimensional time-series data.  ProDA is developed as a three-tier architecture with extensive use of “web services,” a popular new technology, in its middle tier.  

ProDA has applications in several domains, from immersive environments to “eSciences” for online data analysis.  USC’s Chevron Center for Interactive Smart Oilfield Technologies (CiSoft) and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) are the current sponsors of ProDA.

The Integrated Media Systems Center’s immersive game project, known as the “20 20 Classroom,” also relies on ProDA’s sophisticated data analysis capabilities to assess students’ progress by mining users’ data exchange with an educational game.
NAE’s 2005 Frontiers of Engineering symposium will feature several multidisciplinary topics: ID and verification technologies; engineering for developing communities; engineering complex systems; and energy.  

Sponsors include General Electric Co., the Air Force Office of Scientific Research, the U.S. Department of Defense, DARPA, Microsoft Corp., and Cummins Inc., as well as individual donors.

For more information about the event, visit NAE’s website at www.nae.edu/frontiers. To learn more about Shahabi’s research, visit http://infolab.usc.edu/research.jsp.