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News Clips - October 17, 2008

From October 10 to October 16, Carnegie Mellon Media Relations counted 292 references to the university in worldwide publications. Here is a sample.


Scientists view both Obama, McCain as supportive
USA Today | October 15
Science policy experts like Granger Morgan at Carnegie Mellon University says, "Far more critical is to understand how the two candidates use science and technology advice." And he and others say either man would be an improvement over Bush. "They both appear to have areas where they've had terrific track records, and we think that many of the issues will be handled in a way that tracks more closely to the science," said Alan Leshner, chief executive of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.


Helmet to convey messages by thought
Discovery Channel | October 13
The Army grant to researchers at University of California, Irvine, Carnegie Mellon University and the University of Maryland has two objectives. The first is to compose a message using, as D'Zmura puts it, "that little voice in your head." The second part is to send that message to a particular individual or object (like a radio), also just with the power of thought. Once the message reaches the recipient, it could be read as text or as a voice mail. While the money may come from the Army and its first use could be for covert operations, D'Zmura thinks that thought-based communication will find more use in the civilian realm.


Swagger turn to shudder a year after market high
The New York Times | October 10
''I think right now there are just some very powerful negative images that are alive in many people's minds -- images of the Depression, images of people selling apples,'' said George Loewenstein, a behavioral economist at Carnegie Mellon University. ''The images of the downside are just so salient in people's minds, and nobody has presented an upside image yet."

Education for Leadership

A golden girl
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | October 9
Alexandra Dixon-Ernst, 17 and now a freshman at Carnegie Mellon University, took an examination in June run by the long-standing music-educational institution in England (with branches in America). Basically, Dixon-Ernst showed a ton vocal talent and sensitivity to church music.

Arts and Humanities

Work is a pleasure in tomorrow's office
CNN | October 16
The Center for Building Performance and Diagnostics (CBPD) at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh has built the Robert L. Preger Intelligent Workplace -- a functioning workplace that is also a 'living laboratory' for researching office design.


Researcher brings message of hope to autism conference
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | October 16
For families struggling with autism, Kathrin Hippler has a message of hope. A clinical psychologist at University Children's Hospital in Vienna, Austria, Dr. Hippler has tracked down many of the adults who were the child patients of Viennese physician Hans Asperger, whose name is now attached to people who have a high-functioning form of autism. By and large, she found, these 34 men, ranging in age from 25 to 65, are happy and have been able to lead fulfilling lives. And that, says Carnegie Mellon University professor Marcel Just, should "lift up the spirit of anyone with autism. The story of their lives, I would say, is a wonderful outcome."

Information Technology

APC & Carnegie Mellon University announce fellowships for data center efficiency research
PowerPulse | October 13
APC by Schneider Electric, together with Carnegie Mellon University announced the establishment of the APC Fellowships for Data Center Efficiency Research. The APC Research Fellowships support Ph.D. students at Carnegie Mellon with research foci in the broad area of data center efficiency. APC Research Fellowships are part of an ongoing collaboration between APC and Carnegie Mellon focused on data center efficiency.


VC funding for biotech firms
Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology News | October 15
As I write this column, we are now experiencing the biggest financial crisis since the stock market crash of 1929 and the Great Depression. Eventually this crisis will be resolved, and life and business will go on. On October 19, 1987, the Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 22.6%, and the closing high for that year, on August 25, 1987, was not attained again until almost two years later. Nevertheless, according to a 2002 report by Lena Andrews and Jerry Paytas of the Center for Economic Development of Carnegie Mellon University, venture capital (VC) funding of biotech companies was higher in 1987 than in 1986, and while it declined a little in 1988 (but still greater than in 1986), it surged in 1989.


Earth-friendly eating
Reader's Digest | October 10
What's good for your body also turns out to be good for the environment. Substitute chicken, fish, or vegetables for red meat and dairy just one day a week, and your family of four will eliminate the greenhouse gases produced by a 760-mile car trip, say researchers from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, who studied the impact of dozens of foods.

Regional Impact

'Time' article addresses Pittsburgh's hard times
KDKA-TV News | October 14
Dr. Lester Lave, an economist at Carnegie Mellon's Tepper School Of Business, says it helps that Pittsburgh's economy is now based more in its universities and in medicine. "If the economy is not very good, we still need to have healthcare, people still need to get educated and so we don't have the kinds of recessions that we used to have," Lave said.


State energy bill targets electricity costs
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review | October 10
Jay Apt and two other experts at Carnegie Mellon University's Electricity Industry Center pushed for utilities to lock in prices for longer terms in a study last year. They said the deals could spur investment in new generation plants, along with lowering customers' bills.


Newsmaker: Deborah A. Lange
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review | October 14
Education: Doctorate in civil and environmental engineering and master's degree in civil engineering, both from Carnegie Mellon University; bachelor's degree in civil engineering, Penn State University […] Background: Executive director, Carnegie Mellon University's Steinbrenner Institute for Environmental Education & Research […] Notable: Lange recently received $900,000 from the Environmental Protection Agency for continued research and education concerning the economic use of brownfields -- industrial or commercial locations that are abandoned, dormant and underused.


Education: Some local universities falling behind in hiring of women
Pittsburgh City Paper | October 9
Everett Tademy, Carnegie Mellon's assistant vice president for diversity and equal-opportunity services, points out that the school focuses on a number of fields where there are generally fewer female applicants. "I'm not saying that we can't do better," he says. "I'm saying that there are restraints." Tademy admits the increase in diversity has "been glacial. "I'm not going to lie about that," he adds. "But it's been steady; it's been intentional; it's been something that university focuses on." As a sign of that growth, Tademy says that the percentage of research-track faculty who are women is "up to 30 percent," whereas in 1997, it was closer to 10 percent. [...] Lenore Blum, a distinguished career professor of computer science at Carnegie Mellon, also says that Carnegie Mellon has the largest percentage of women in computer science of "any of the major" comp-sci schools in the country. In a field that is statistically heavy on Y chromosomes, Blum says Carnegie Mellon's comp-sci program has reached a ratio where about 1 in 4 students is female. "It's not 50 percent," she concedes. She adds, "but it's not 5 percent."


Teaching consumers on-line safety easiest when they take the bait
Virtualization | October 15
The Anti-Phishing Working Group (APWG) and Carnegie Mellon University’s Supporting Trust Decisions Project have established a phishing page redirect initiative that protects global online consumers who have been tricked into clicking links in scam emails by delivering them to Web pages that instruct them on the dangers of phishing – and how to avoid them. The program was announced today at the APWG conference in Atlanta.


The return of the short sellers
Moneyweb | October 14
Chester Spatt, the SEC's former chief economist, said short selling is important to markets. "If you try to shut off the ability of investors to express negative sentiment... that does not necessarily raise prices," said Spatt, now a professor of finance at Carnegie Mellon Tepper School of Business.