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News Clips - February 22, 2008

From February 15 to February 21, Carnegie Mellon Media Relations counted 287 references to the university in worldwide publications. Here is a sample.


Can you predict happiness?
TIME Magazine | February 19
If you think you can predict what you will like, think again. When people try to estimate how much they will enjoy a future experience, they are dependably wrong, according to research by Harvard psychologists — and the reason is something they call "attentional collapse." When we imagine future experiences, we tend to compare them with alternative experiences — experiences we've had in the past, or other experiences we might have before or after. But the fact is that none of those alternatives come into play once we're actually in the moment. ... In his latest research, conducted in collaboration with social psychologist Carey Morewedge of Carnegie Mellon University and presented last weekend at the American Association for the Advancement of Science conference in Boston, Gilbert bolsters the theory that our inability to predict enjoyment of our future experiences keeps us from accurately predicting what will make us happiest in the future overall.,8599,1714473,00.html


Budweiser, Miller...and Tsingtao?
BusinessWeek | February 19
Crown Imports, the largest beer importer in the U.S., sells more Tsingtao beer every year during Chinese New Year than any other period. This year, it's been pulling out all the stops. Chicago-based Crown (a subsidiary of Constellation Brands (STZ)) has persuaded Costco Wholesale (COST) to carry China's most famous beer in several stores in Northern California and the Pacific Northwest on a trial basis during celebrations of the Year of the Rat, which started on Feb. 7. If Tsingtao sells well, Costco may consider stocking the Chinese import beer year-round. Crown Imports has also signed up celebrity chef Martin Yan to kick off a marketing blitz in a bid to expand Tsingtao outside Chinatown and into downtown U.S.A. ... Sun Baohong, a Carnegie Mellon University marketing professor who has done case studies on Tsingtao's global strategy, says the problem with Chinese companies is that they have gotten very good at manufacturing products for export at low cost. But Chinese companies have been content to let multinational corporations, such as Nike (NKE) or Motorola (MOT) or Dell (DELL), slap on their brands and market the goods. Now that Chinese companies are starting to expand overseas, with their government's encouragement, they are finding their lack of brand-building experience is a huge liability.


Why your wallet feels thinner
Forbes | February 15
The U.S. Federal Reserve has been slashing interest rates to stave off a recession. One potential risk to that strategy: inflation. ... Where to go from here? Allan Meltzer, a Fed historian and professor at the Tepper School of Business at Carnegie Mellon University, warns that Bernanke and company should focus on maintaining steady economic growth while also keeping inflation in check. Says Meltzer, "Focusing on one or the other will eventually lead the economy into deeper recession."

Education for Leadership

Religious, secular universities help students find meaning
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review | February 18
Maura Turnby was devastated when concussions forced her to give up soccer last year, costing her an athletic scholarship to the University of Connecticut. Turnby, 19, of Hampton attends Robert Morris University. And she considers the loss of her favorite sport a blessing because it gave her the time to delve into religious activities on campus. ... Carnegie Mellon offers a "big questions" program for freshmen, a spirituality month in November, a club called Interfaith Explorers and a "Digging Deeper" series that helps students discuss their spiritual being.


The grandmaster's flash
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review | February 15
Darmen Sadvakassov keeps his opponents in check -- even when there are 30 at one time. Sadvakassov, 28, a Carnegie Mellon University student and Kazakhstan native, is a grandmaster chess player, one of only 60 in the United States. For fun, he toys with simultaneous chess matches in which he plays, on average, 30 opponents and makes moves at mind-boggling speed. Only rarely does he stumble and lose.

Arts and Humanities

Stage preview: Wilson play is a first for Carnegie Mellon and New York director
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | February 21
Elizabeth Van Dyke loves what's she's doing. She's a guest worker in Pittsburgh, where August Wilson's plays began. She's an experienced director, directing a Wilson play for the first time -- and not just any play but the Pulitzer Prize-winning "The Piano Lesson," in which she once acted at the country's leading black theater. And she's doing this at Carnegie Mellon, which lavishes more resources and support on her students than she can quite believe. Nor can she quite believe her all-black student cast, a mixture of seniors and juniors with one sophomore. "It's so exciting to be at Carnegie Mellon's school of drama, with something going on in every corner 24 hours a day and the students so devoted, committed and also open and trusting. It's a great gift."


Women's conference promotes leadership
The Minnesota Daily | February 18
On Friday, one of the coldest days of the year, female students and business professionals came together in Coffman Union's Great Hall to discuss the hot topic of corporate women. "Achieve it! Developing a Strategy for Success" was the theme of the fourth-annual Women's Leadership Conference put on by the Carlson School of Management, which aimed to level the corporate playing field for men and women. ... Linda Babcock, founder and director of PROGRESS and economics professor at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, said women learn about the differences between men and women early in life. An example of this, she said, comes from Saturday morning cartoon shows where only 12 percent of the major characters are female.


How to make good decisions
Real Simple Magazine | March Issue
We all know what makes a good decision: It is timely (fast, but not too fast) and well-considered (taking into account all options and their most likely outcomes) and produces a result we find satisfying. So why do we so often fall into decision-making traps? The answer lies quite simply in how we’re feeling. ... Burrowing into an abundance of data is another way to avoid committing. You may be using research to “avoid looking inside to see what gambles you’re willing to take,” says Baruch Fischhoff, Ph.D., a psychologist at Carnegie Mellon University, in Pittsburgh, who studies decision making. ... Any of this sound like you? All of it? You’re not alone. Most of us use these behaviors in combination or fall back on one or another depending on the situation. The good news: You don’t have to decide which one style fits you. Here’s advice on how to tackle them all.,21863,1711370,00.html

Information Technology

Companies 'should learn from SocGen case'
OneStopClick | February 15
Businesses should learn from the recent fraud case at Societe Generale and improve internal security, according to an expert. Societe Generale was subject to the largest fraud case involving a rouge trader, losing £3.7 billion, highlighting IT security issues to companies around the world. ... A survey by CERT, an IT security program by Carnegie Mellon University, showed that business IT security is mainly focused on external threats, despite a 27 per cent rise in internal incidents. One issue which has been highlighted is the sharing of passwords, particularly to privileged accounts which have a back-door into systems.'should-learn-from-SocGen-case'_18469439.html


CENTRIA seeks green market with solar roofing products
Pittsburgh Business Times (subscription) | February 15
 As the demand for sustainability in building design and construction grows across the country, one local business is developing a system to expand the use of solar power and, consequently, its revenue stream. Moon Township-based CENTRIA has spent the past year developing industry standards for integrating solar power cells into metal roofing systems. ...  Steve Lee, a professor at Carnegie Mellon University's School of Architecture, said demand for photovoltaic panels "far outstrips" supply, despite the high cost of solar panels that can take a long time -- several decades in some parts of the country -- to be paid back through energy bill savings.

Regional Impact

Region's colleges lauded for community work
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review | February 20
Six area colleges received federal recognition for their projects to involve students in volunteer projects in their communities. Making the Community Service Honor Roll were Carlow, Carnegie Mellon, Duquesne and Robert Morris universities, the University of Pittsburgh-Greensburg and Westminster College.


Charter school at Frick Park gets review team's OK
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review | February 19
The Pittsburgh Public Schools District Charter School Review Team gave qualified approval Monday for The Environmental Charter School at Frick Park. ... But the team pointed out that the proposed charter school has strong community support and that several notable organizations -- such as Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy and the Frick Environmental Center -- have chosen to partner with it.


Carnegie Mellon looking to future with $10 million from Hillman
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | February 21
Capping recent successes in robotics and computer science, Carnegie Mellon University has announced a $10 million gift from the Henry L. Hillman Foundation to help construct a research building in its new computer science complex. Carnegie Mellon President Jared L. Cohon and foundation President David K. Roger said funding discussions had been under way for years, but the time was ripe with the start of construction for the $98 million School of Computer Science complex. It will include the Gates Center for Computer Science and the Hillman Center for Future-Generation Technologies named in honor of the gift.


Women: Don't ask? Ha! Do tell
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | February 18
Linda Babcock, an economics professor at Carnegie Mellon University, had been teaching negotiations and dispute resolution for years before she had an epiphany about why women weren't achieving the same results as men in negotiable situations. Put simply, the women didn't ask for what they wanted.


Dave O'Hallaron leads up Intel research in Pittsburgh
TEQ Magazine | January/February Issue
When Dave O’Hallaron, an Associate Professor at Carnegie Mellon, signed on to become the new Director of Intel Research Pittsburgh last summer, he didn’t have far to move at all – the Intel lab is on Carnegie Mellon’s campus. Part of Intel’s Exploratory Research mission, the lab is one of three Intel research branches located on university campuses designed to advance computing technologies through open university/industry collaboration. With the primary intent to publish its findings, Intel Pittsburgh pursues “disruptive” research in the fields of robotics and computer systems on a five to 10-year horizon with the vision to redefine the present-day boundaries by which computers are used in daily life.


Carnegie Mellon hosts computer workshops for Qatar students | February 19
The workshop, held as part of the CS4Qatar program, was held at Education City, and included section on computer science puzzles, robotics and Alice, an open source 3D programming tool that is intended as an introduction to computer programming. Mark Stehlik, Assistant Dean for Undergraduate Education in the Carnegie Mellon School of Computer Science, said: "This is yet another way of bringing computer science to the community. We've had two successful workshops for teachers and we wanted to provide students with an opportunity to experience the richness of Computer Science as a field."


Dundee students represent UK at Microsoft Expo
Design Week | February 14
Microsoft is inviting a handful of design schools from around the world to exhibit at its annual Design Expo this summer. The University of Dundee is the UK’s sole representative at the knowledge-sharing event, which is part of the Microsoft Research Faculty Summit. This year’s theme is learning and education. Dundee’s students will join those from the Art Center Pasadena and the Carnegie Mellon School of Design in the US, the Eindhoven Department of Industrial Design in the Netherlands, and students from China and Mexico.