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News Clips - March 23, 2007

From March 16 to March 22, Carnegie Mellon Media Relations counted 186 references to the university in worldwide publications. Here is a sample.


Popularity might not be enough
The New York Times | March 22
Let’s say you wanted to build an advertising-supported online media business that took in $50 million a year in revenue. How many users would you have to attract to get there? ... I.S.P.’s are wary of peer-to-peer networks not only because of their use for piracy, but also because they hog bandwidth and turn users into distributors of content who don’t pay anything extra for the burdens they place on the system. But Mr. Roush examines new technologies that could make such networks more efficient and could allow I.S.P.’s to identify the biggest bandwidth users and charge them accordingly. That second idea might make advocates of “network neutrality” a little nervous, since it would let I.S.P.’s favor some content providers over others. But Hui Zhang, the computer scientist at Carnegie Mellon University who developed the technology, says such concerns are overblown.


North Dakota
USA Today | March 14
City and business leaders say they're talking with Carnegie Mellon University about a partnership for farm research. The talks could lead to a Carnegie Mellon presence at the North Dakota State University technology park, Mayor Dennis Walaker said. Walaker and representatives of Microsoft and farm equipment maker Phoenix International were in Pittsburgh last week to meet with Carnegie Mellon leaders.

Education for Leadership

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review | March 22
Carnegie Mellon University senior David Krzeminski earned All-America honors after winning the Division III national championship in the 200-yard butterfly. His winning time of 1:49.54 in the finals established a school record. In the preliminaries, Krzeminski was the only swimmer to break the 1:50.00 mark (1:49.85).

Arts and Humanities

Taste of Paris
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | March 22
At 6 p.m. Tuesday, LePommier Bistro Francais and Silver Eye Center for Photography are collaborating on a special event in conjunction with an exhibit of photographs of Paris on display at Silver Eye, 1015 E. Carson St., South Side. The evening begins at the gallery with an original multimedia presentation of French songs by Christopher Jones, Carnegie Mellon professor of French Studies.


Art review: Contemporary 'Tides' reflects Northern Irish culture
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | March 21
Northern Ireland currently has a strong presence at Carnegie Mellon University. "Tides," at the Regina Gouger Miller Gallery, comprises work by nine contemporary artists who live there, almost all of whom earned degrees at the University of Ulster and/or are on the school's faculty. Hilary Robinson, who was appointed Carnegie Mellon Dean of the College of Fine Arts last summer, previously headed the University of Ulster School of Art and Design. And the recently appointed Carnegie Mellon Head of the School of Art, John Carson, is a native of Belfast. Robinson and Carson, along with history professor David Miller, who specializes in Irish social history, will participate in a free, public panel that begins at 6 p.m. tomorrow at the gallery. "Tidings: New Turns in Art From Northern Ireland" will address works in the exhibition and the broader, political and cultural issues raised by them. Assistant Professor of art Melissa Ragona will moderate.


'Gritty Brits' forum
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | March 18
Re-building post-industrial cities in innovative ways is the topic of a public forum to be held Saturday in conjunction with "Gritty Brits: New London Architecture," the current exhibit at Carnegie Museum of Art's Heinz Architectural Center. Two of the "Gritty Brits" architects, Sean Griffiths of FAT (Fashion Architecture Taste) and Niall McLaughlin, will talk about their work and how it evolved. Also, four Pittsburgh cultural and civic leaders will share their thoughts on the exhibit's projects and talk about moving forward here with architecture that capitalizes on the city's context and character. They are "Gritty Brits" organizer Raymund Ryan, Carnegie Museum of Art curator of architecture; Hilary Robinson, dean of the College of Art, Carnegie Mellon University; Jane Werner, director of the Children's Museum of Pittsburgh; and Patrick Ford, City of Pittsburgh director of community and economic development.


Authenticity plays a role when PICT casts the classics
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | March 18
In a local discussion of actors and accents, the obvious place to turn is a group that lists part of its mission as "actor-centered, text and language-driven theater." That would be Pittsburgh Irish & Classical Theatre, where Shakespeare, Shaw, Synge et al. can put an actor to the test. Artistic director Andrew Paul walks a bit of a tightrope when preparing a work like last season's "The Shaughraun," a 19th-century Irish play in which Paul directed 22 actors. If the accents don't faze the audience, there is a good chance the authentic language will. ... Helping him and other PICT players are accent coaches Don Wadsworth and Natalie Baker, who teach voice and speech in the Carnegie Mellon University theater department.


This is your brain, addicted
The Baltimore Sun | March 16
You might think reaching for that cup of coffee or cigarette is a simple decision. But scientists believe the way we act to satisfy cravings involves a little-understood automated response - one we have no control over - and researchers in Baltimore are using brain scans to unlock its secrets. ... "It's pretty amazing, to be able to look inside the workings of someone's brain," said George Loewenstein, a researcher at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh. For example, Loewenstein has found that decisions about spending money can activate brain regions associated with pain.,0,6919444.story?coll=bal-health-utility

Information Technology

Probing the secrets of the deep with a robot
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | March 21
Sinkholes in Mexico -- those watery geological enigmas that have lured people to their banks for centuries -- don't easily reveal their deep, dark secrets. But scientists are now collecting a mother lode of information about sinkholes known as "cenotes" in Mexico's central Gulf region, with help from roboticists at Carnegie Mellon University. Stone Aerospace Inc. of Austin, Texas, recruited David Wettergreen, associate research professor at Carnegie Mellon's Robotics Institute, to help develop the Deep Phreatic Thermal Explorer known as DEPTHX. The autonomous robot is now being deployed to explore sinkholes whose dangerous depths have long confounded scientists.


Girls ask Alice for programming skills
Channel Insider | March 19
Girls, want to learn to program? Go ask Alice. ... Alice is a Java-based, interactive program that enables users to create 3-D computer animations without the need for high-level programming skills. ... Randy Pausch, professor of computer science and human computer interaction, as well as director of the Stage 3 Research lab at Carnegie Mellon University, began work on what was to become Alice in the early 1990s while at the University of Virginia. Pausch said Alice began as an easy-to-use scripting tool for building virtual worlds, a way of making computer graphics more accessible.


Games theory
Science News | March 17
I'm online wrapped up on the ESP Game, and I'm finding it hard to stop. As each round ends, I'm eager to try again to rack up points. The game randomly pairs players who have logged on to the game's Web site ( ... I'm having fun, but there's more to this game than meets the eye. To its inventor, computer scientist Luis von Ahn of Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh and his colleagues, the game provides an innovative way to label images with descriptive terms that make them easier to find online. ... "The ESP Game turns the tedious task of entering words that describe an image into something that's fun," von Ahn says. ... Working with Carnegie Mellon's Manuel Blum and others, von Ahn looked for a task that people could do easily but that computers would find difficult.


GBA awards three for green building leadership
Pop City Media | March 14
Pennsylvania senator Jim Ferlo, Carnegie Mellon University architecture professor Stephen Lee and PPG Industries researcher Mike Rupert will received the 2007 Shades of Green Leadership Awards at a conference March 15th at the Western Convention Center Hotel. The awards, presented by the Green Building Alliance (GBA), recognize individuals in Western Pennsylvania who are leaders in green building. GBA is a non-profit organization that works to advance resource-efficient, environmentally sensitive projects.

Regional Impact

Revised figures slash region's job growth
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review | March 20
Job growth in the Pittsburgh region over the past two years has been only about half of what was previously reported, according to revised state figures. ... Donald Smith, an economics professor at Carnegie Mellon University, said he believes the state's data is not capturing the jobs created by start-up companies in the region. "The start-up economy is much healthier than it has been in many years," he said. ... In many years, the revised figures would show an increase in the numbers of jobs created in the Pittsburgh region, said Carnegie Mellon's Smith, who is director of economic development for the University of Pittsburgh and Carnegie Mellon.


As region's workers get older, employers' headaches get bigger
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | March 20
The work force of the world's industrialized countries will change dramatically in the next two decades. Declining birth rates, increasing life expectancy, early retirement programs, boomers working later in life and emergent skills crucial to new occupations will transform strategic work-force management. This combination of a work force projected to be smaller and older will challenge the region, as well as the nation and most developed countries. Because of this challenge, the Three Rivers Workforce Investment Board, in partnership with Carnegie Mellon University's Center for Economic Development, decided to do a study focusing on work-force development in the southwestern Pennsylvania region of Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Greene, Indiana, Washington and Westmoreland counties.


Saving Brownsville: Is its history key to future?
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review | March 18
Hamburgers and hot dogs sizzle on the grill at Fiddle's Confectionery, where 15 counter stools fill as the lunch crowd arrives on a brisk afternoon. ... The "way things used to be" is a frequent topic in this bleak Monongahela River valley town that has bled population and businesses for decades. ... What's happening in this Fayette County community is not unique. Experts say it is an example of a downward spiral common to small municipalities. "It's an unhappy situation, but it's replicated all over the valley," said Robert Strauss, a professor of economics and public policy in the Heinz School of Public Policy & Management at Carnegie Mellon University.


Newsmaker: Pradeep Khosla
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review | March 22
Pradeep Khosla. Residence: Mt. Lebanon. Family: Wife, Thespine Kavoulakis; children, Nathan, 16, Alexander, 9, Nina, 6. Education: Bachelor's degree in science in technology, Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur, 1980; master's degree and doctorate, both in electrical and computer engineering, Carnegie Mellon University, 1984 and 1986. Background: Dean of Carnegie Mellon's College of Engineering since 2004.


Who's the boss? Parents working for their kids can strengthen and stretch family ties
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | March 20
Parents who wind up working for a son or daughter often find that their approach to work differs from their child's. Such arrangements are emotional land mines, but many people tiptoe around them daily. Family-owned businesses account for 60 percent of total employment in the United States, 78 percent of all new jobs, 65 percent of all wages paid and 50 percent of the nation's gross domestic product, according to the Institute for Entrepreneurial Excellence at the University of Pittsburgh's Katz Graduate School of Business. ... Denise Rousseau, H.J. Heinz II professor of organization behavior at Carnegie Mellon University, said this tension often arises in family-owned businesses. "It's an amazing thing to me," she said. "We assume that somebody who is senior and experienced doesn't need training or development and that's ridiculous. These people love the training experience. They like the people they meet. They like the novelty of it.


Pitt, Carnegie Mellon, PSU rank near top in research
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | March 20
A report on the nation's major research universities has given top national ratings to the University of Pittsburgh, Penn State University, Carnegie Mellon University and University of Pennsylvania for 2006. The report is from the Center for Measuring University Performance at Arizona State University.


First Sustainable Technology Award Goes To Chinese Team
China Tech News | March 22
A team from China won the inaugural Sustainable Technology Award at the international McGinnis Venture Competition, hosted by the Donald H. Jones Center for Entrepreneurship at Carnegie Mellon University's Tepper School of Business.


The father of Java watches his baby grow up
Guardian Unlimited | March 22
It may sound hard to believe, but a decade ago, Sun's Java computer language was one of the hottest topics in technology. Netscape was going to write its new applications in Java, Java applets were going to dominate the web, universities and colleges were starting to teach it as their standard programming language, while its advocates and some of the more starry-eyed advocates and journalists imagined it overturning Microsoft. All this turned James Gosling - who is considered the father of Java - into something of a superstar. In recognition of his achievements, he has just been awarded the Order Of Canada, his country's highest honour. "I have to go and get whacked with a sword," says Gosling. ... Education: BSc in computer science from the University of Calgary, Canada, in 1977; PhD in computer science from Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, US, in 1983.,,2039364,00.html