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May 2018 — May 2018

Big Business Computing (May 27, 2018)
It’s a race to the top. The big chemical companies are making serious investments in the latest generation of high-powered supercomputers. They’re talking about not only employing faster processors with bigger memories, but ‘digitalisation’ strategies that will transform the industry and keep them ahead of competition from start-ups. BASF has created a digitalisation department for its research and development, while Evonik has established a digital division that will serve the whole of ...
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CERN Prepares for New Computing Challenges with Large Hadron Collider (May 27, 2018)
Thanks to the discovery of the Higgs boson in 2012, CERN’s Large Hadron Collider (LHC) has probably become the most widely recognized science project on the planet. Now almost 10 years old, the 27-kilometer ring of superconducting magnets is the world’s largest and most capable particle accelerator. As such, it enables physicists to push the envelope of particle physics research.

Ingestible 'Bacteria on a Chip' Could Help Diagnose Disease (May 26, 2018)
MIT researchers have built an ingestible sensor equipped with genetically engineered bacteria that can diagnose bleeding in the stomach or other gastrointestinal problems. This "bacteria-on-a-chip" approach combines sensors made from living cells with ultra-low-power electronics that convert the bacterial response into a wireless signal that can be read by a smartphone.

How Cornell University Diversified Its Incoming PhD Computer Science Student Body (May 26, 2018)
When a professor posted a Twitter thread about how Cornell University improved diversity in its computer-science PhD program, it quickly went viral. “[W]e made a big step in improving diversity of the program. Let me tell you about it,” wrote David Bindel, the PhD admissions chair for Cornell University’s Computer Science department, earlier this month. It’s clearly an issue that other higher ed leaders are interested in hearing about—the tweet has been shared more than 750 times and d...
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XSEDE Maverick Simulations Enable a First in Biomolecular Design (May 25, 2018)
What makes kevlar stop a bullet, at the atomic level? The properties of materials emerge from their molecular or atomic structure, yet many details between the micro and the macro remain a mystery to science. Scientists are actively researching the rational design of targeted supramolecular architectures, with the goal of engineering their structural dynamics and their response to environmental cues.

Computer Science Educators Wanted: How This New Program Is Addressing the Shortage (May 24, 2018)
In an environment of 21st century demand from tech-hungry students, educators are largely stuck with out-of-date or insufficient training to keep up with demand. Particularly in the area of computer science (CS), schools need more qualified teachers. Public-private partnerships are one way to address the nation-wide shortage of computer science-trained educators, and the latest comes in the form of STEMpath, a new graduate-level educator certification program that isn't quite a master's degree.

Using the K Computer, Scientists Predict Exotic 'di-Omega' Particle (May 24, 2018)
Based on complex simulations of quantum chromodynamics performed using the K computer, one of the most powerful computers in the world, the HAL QCD Collaboration, made up of scientists from the RIKEN Nishina Center for Accelerator-based Science and the RIKEN Interdisciplinary Theoretical and Mathematical Sciences (iTHEMS) program, together with colleagues from a number of universities, have predicted a new type of "dibaryon"--a particle that contains six quarks instead of the usual three.

Nuclear Physicists Leap into Quantum Computing with First Simulations of Atomic Nucleus (May 23, 2018)
Scientists at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory are the first to successfully simulate an atomic nucleus using a quantum computer. The results, published in Physical Review Letters, demonstrate the ability of quantum systems to compute nuclear physics problems and serve as a benchmark for future calculations.

Gauging Language Proficiency Through Eye Movement (May 23, 2018)
A study by MIT researchers has uncovered a new way of telling how well people are learning English: tracking their eyes. That's right. Using data generated by cameras trained on readers' eyes, the research team has found that patterns of eye movement—particularly how long people's eyes rest on certain words—correlate strongly with performance on standardized tests of English as a second language.

Transforming Transportation with Machine Learning (May 19, 2018)
You hear the buzzwords everywhere—machine learning, artificial intelligence—revolutionary new approaches to transform the way we interact with products, services, and information, from prescribing drugs to advertising messages. Artificial intelligence, a branch of computer science dealing with the simulation of intelligent behavior in computers, is already behind many of the technologies we see today, including virtual online assistants and driverless cars. In transportation, the application...
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Deeper Understanding of Quantum Chaos May Be the Key to Quantum Computers (May 18, 2018)
New research gives insight into a recent experiment that was able to manipulate an unprecedented number of atoms through a quantum simulator. This new theory could provide another step on the path to creating the elusive quantum computers. An international team of researchers, led by the University of Leeds and in cooperation with the Institute of Science and Technology Austria and the University of Geneva, has provided a theoretical explanation for the particular behaviour of individual atoms t...
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New Startup Zapata Computing Intends to Market Quantum Computing Software (May 18, 2018)
A new startup called Zapata Computing has launched with the intention of creating and selling software for quantum computers. Representatives of the new company announced to the press that they have already received $5.4 million in seed money from MIT's The Engine venture firm and several others.Most of the news surrounding quantum computer development has been focused on the hardware, but the team at Zapata claims it is time to start getting serious about the software.

Call for Papers: Workshop on Strategies for Enhancing HPC Education and Training (May 16, 2018)
The SEHET18 workshop is an ACM SIGHPC Education Chapter coordinated effort aimed at fostering collaborations among the practitioners from traditional and emerging fields to explore strategies to enhance computational, data-enabled and HPC educational needs. Attendees will discuss approaches for developing and deploying HPC training and education, as well as identifying new challenges and opportunities for keeping pace with the rapid pace of technological advances - from collaborative and online ...
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Advancing Genomics With High-Performance Computing (May 16, 2018)
The Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard is playing a major role in accelerating genomic analysis and is collaborating with Intel to do so. With the massive growth of genomics data, the collaboration makes use of technology to enable genomics analytics at scale. The latest result is a suite of optimized software, along with reference architectures for turnkey configuration, setup, and deployment to run genomics analysis that includes Broad’s Genomic Analysis Toolkit (GATK).

Algorithm is 'Game-Changer' for Picking Up on Insurance Fraud (May 14, 2018)
A Queen's University Belfast student has developed software which can detect insurance fraud quickly. Jiawen Sun, a PhD student in the School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and the Institute of Electronics, Communications and Information Technologies (ECIT) at Queen's, has been working for the last three years to create a software system which can efficiently analyse graph-structured data.

Lasers Could Make Computers 1 Million Times Faster (May 14, 2018)
A billion operations per second isn't cool. Know what's cool? A million billion operations per second. That's the promise of a new computing technique that uses laser-light pulses to make a prototype of the fundamental unit of computing, called a bit, that could switch between its on and off, or "1" and "0" states, 1 quadrillion times per second. That's about 1 million times faster than the bits in modern computers.

Researchers Hide Information in Plain Text (May 13, 2018)
Computer scientists at Columbia Engineering have invented FontCode, a new way to embed hidden information in ordinary text by imperceptibly changing, or perturbing, the shapes of fonts in text. FontCode creates font perturbations, using them to encode a message that can later be decoded to recover the message. The method works with most fonts and, unlike other text and document methods that hide embedded information, works with most document types, even maintaining the hidden information when th...
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Universities Keeping Up with Seattle's Computer Science Demand (May 13, 2018)
Among the nation’s top tech hubs, Seattle has the fastest growth rate in job openings for computing professionals. That’s according to labor market experts at Indeed Hiring Lab. With so many new jobs to fill, Puget Sound area employers are struggling to find qualified workers. The latest info from the state’s Employment Security Department shows software developers, systems analysts and other tech-driven occupations rank among the most in-demand across the state.

Need for Computer Science Education as Cyber Attacks Increase (May 12, 2018)
"Computer science is infused in everything that everybody does. Period," said Keith Glendon, an IBM Security programming director. One of the largest examples of computer science is cyber security as millions of cyber attacks occur daily. Glendon said without computer science education, people can’t be protected. "It doesn’t matter what kind of data you have or what you are doing, somebody can take it and somebody can sell it," said M Latuszek, an IBM intern.

The Social Network Employers Love to Raid (May 12, 2018)
Piazza Technologies Inc. is a stealth company—largely unknown by the general public but familiar to almost anyone who’s studied computer science in the past few years. Some 2.5 million students use its free website to ask and answer one another’s questions about computers, engineering, math, and science, all under the supervision of their professors.

UK Universities Alarmed by Poaching of Top Computer Science Brains (May 11, 2018)
The hiring of professors in artificial intelligence by big technology companies is “killing the goose that lays the golden eggs”, according to Abhinay Muthoo. The dean of Warwick university’s King’s Cross campus in London, which coordinates its AI projects, fears the poaching of the best computer science brains in UK higher education by US groups such as Amazon, Google and Uber is threatening Britain’s ability to build on a world leading position in machine learning.

Transfer Students in Computer Science Prove Successful (May 11, 2018)
Computer science transfer students are as successful in their classes as those who originate in Washington State University’s program, according to a recent WSU retrospective longitudinal study. The question of how well transfer students do is of increasing interest to educators as more students begin their college education at community colleges, especially in high-demand fields such as computer science.

Symmetry is Essential for Power Network Synchronization (May 10, 2018)
A joint research team from Tokyo Institute of Technology (Tokyo Tech) and North Carolina State University has clarified the fundamental principles for achieving the synchronization of power generator groups[1] in power networks, which is essential for the stable supply of electric power. Based on this principle, the team developed a method for constructing an aggregated model of a power network that can efficiently analyze and control the behavior of generator groups (including rotor phase angle...
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How the Father of Computer Science Decoded Nature's Mysterious Patterns (May 10, 2018)
Many have heard of Alan Turing, the mathematician and logician who invented modern computing in 1935. They know Turing, the cryptologist who cracked the Nazi Enigma code, helped win World War II. And they remember Turing as a martyr for gay rights who, after being prosecuted and sentenced to chemical castration, committed suicide by eating an apple laced with cyanide in 1954.

Self-Navigating AI Learns to Take Shortcuts: Study (May 9, 2018)
A computer program modeled on the human brain learnt to navigate a virtual maze and take shortcuts, outperforming a flesh-and-blood expert, its developers said. While artificial intelligence (AI) programs have recently made great strides in imitating human brain processing—everything from recognizing objects to playing complicated board games—spatial navigation has remained a challenge.

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