News & Events


Professor Umans Receives Northrop Grumman Prize for Excellence in Teaching


Christopher Umans, Professor of Computer Science, is the recipient of the 2017 Northrop Grumman Prize for Excellence in Teaching. The Prize is awarded to an EAS professor who demonstrates, in the broadest sense, unusual ability, creativity, and innovation in undergraduate and graduate classroom or laboratory teaching. A nomination for Professor Umans read, “his course on computational complexity has become the de facto way that students decide if they're interested in computer science. It is an extremely challenging, mathematical course but his crisp, entertaining lectures bring everyone along.” Students in his class described it as, “my favorite class at Caltech so far", and ”I didn't think I liked theoretical CS until I took this course.”

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Professor Chandy Receives Harry H. Goode Memorial Award


Kanianthra Mani Chandy, Simon Ramo Professor of Computer Science, Emeritus, is a recipient of the IEEE Computer Society 2017 Harry H. Goode Memorial Award. for “for seminal contributions to distributed and parallel programming, including the development of the UNITY formalism.” The Goode Award recognizes achievements in the information processing field which are considered either a single contribution of theory, design, or technique of outstanding significance, or the accumulation of important contributions on theory or practice over an extended time period. [IEEE Computer Society story]

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Kun ho (John) Kim Receives 2017 Henry Ford II Scholar Award


Computer science and mechanical engineering student Kun ho (John) Kim is a recipient of the 2017 Henry Ford II Scholar Award. John is working with Professors Burdick and Perona to develop novel machine learning methods for medical applications and crowd sourced data mining. The Henry Ford II Scholar Award is funded under an endowment provided by the Ford Motor Company Fund. The award is made annually to the engineering student with the best academic record at the end of the third year of undergraduate study.

Tags: MCE CMS Henry Ford II Scholar Award Pietro Perona Joel Burdick Kun ho (John) Kim honors

One Step at a Time: A Conversation with Professor Ames


Aaron Ames, Bren Professor of Mechanical and Civil Engineering, handbuilds bipedal robots and designs the algorithms that govern how they walk. These algorithms couple efficiency equations with boundary constraints to teach robots to generate their own walking gait. [Interview with Professor Ames]

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The Future is Autonomous


On April 19, 2017 Electrical Engineering alumnus Evangelos Simoudis (BS '83) moderated a panel titled "The Road Ahead: A Panel on the Future of Driverless Vehicles," hosted by the Caltech Associates. The panel members were Professors Mory Gharib, Richard Murray, and Pietro Perona, along with Reuters automotive industry reporter, Paul Lienert. They discuss a variety of opportunities and challenges associated with autonomous technologies and systems. Beyond the legal and ethical challenges, several technological obstacles must be overcome before driverless cars become common on the road. One key challenge is teaching driverless cars how to read the behavior of other cars and react accordingly. Professor Perona described the problem of a car attempting to merge onto a crowded freeway. A driverless car would see an impenetrable wall of vehicles, but a human driver could edge forward and wave at other drivers to work his or her way into the line of traffic. [Caltech story]

Tags: EE GALCIT CMS Morteza Gharib Pietro Perona alumni Richard Murray Evangelos Simoudis Paul Lienert

Professor Beck Receives Housner Medal


James L. Beck, George W. Housner Professor of Engineering and Applied Science, Emeritus, has been selected by the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Engineering Mechanics Institute to receive the 2017 George W. Housner Structural Control and Monitoring Medal “For his exceptional and influential scholarship in structural monitoring and control research, and for his leadership in tackling uncertainty and model complexity through probabilistic approaches with emphasis on Bayesian methods.”

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The Adventure Continues


Our day-to-day world is shaped by technologies that can be traced back to Professor Carver Mead and his protégés at Caltech. Such as the device you’re using to read this story. [Learn more]

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Silicon Valley Engineering Fellowship


Undergraduate student, Advitheey Chelikani, has been selected as a Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (KPCB) fellow. He will be working as a software engineering intern on the platform team at Slack this summer and in the fall he will be a software engineering intern on the infrastructure team at Coursera. [List of fellows]

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Engineers Explore New Media Art


Students in Professor Hillary Mushkin’s media arts seminar (E/H/Art 89 New Media Arts in the 20th and 21st Centuries) displayed and discussed their projects at a recent campus event. The projects used a variety of approaches to explore cyberspace, gaming, the internet, and privacy. [List of projects]

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New President of the French Academy of Sciences


Alumnus Sébastien Candel (PhD '72) has been elected as president of the French Academy of Sciences (Académie des sciences, Institut de France). The Academy, which was created in 1666, is committed to the advancement of science and advises government authorities on scientific issues.  Candel obtained his PhD in mechanical engineering and applied mathematics from Caltech and is a receipient of the Caltech Distinguished Alumni Award for his contributions to aerospace. [Caltech story] [Candel's Marble Lecture]

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