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News Clips - June 5, 2009

From May 29 to June 4, Carnegie Mellon Media Relations counted 335 references to the university in worldwide publications. Here is a sample.


GM, Bankruptcy, and Uncle Sam
National Public Radio | June 1
Allan Meltzer, professor of political economy and public policy at Carnegie Mellon University, visiting scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, and author of “History of the Federal Reserve, Vol. I: 1913-1951.” He’s a former advisor to Ronald Reagan and also served briefly in the US Treasury under JFK.


Auto Executives Back Obama's Emissions Plan
U.S. News & World Report | May 29
Only a few years ago, of course, most automakers would have aggressively opposed calls for government-mandated increases in fuel economy. At the time, they still had significant clout in Washington; they called the shots. But that's changed as the economy has unraveled and their fortunes have declined. "They are simply not as politically potent," says David Gerard, executive director of Carnegie Mellon's Center for the Study and Improvement of Regulation.


How to safeguard your data as you travel | May 28
"It's a shared medium, and if you can connect to it, someone else can connect to it and monitor your traffic," said Marty Linder, a senior member of the technical staff at the Carnegie Mellon Software Engineering Institute CERT/Coordination Center. "That has nothing to do with the security of the network. It's just the nature of the beast."


Study focuses on ex-cons 'safe to hire'
United Press International | May 28
The report by Carnegie Mellon University researchers aims to create a practical model for a reliable answer to a perpetually chancy question of how soon can an ex-offender be considered "redeemed" for job purposes.

Education for Leadership

Ten Minutes That Mattered: Jeffrey Housenbold | June 2
Jeffrey Housenbold, age 39, became chief executive of Shutterfly in January 2005 after stints at eBay and AltaVista. He almost didn't go to college. A high school guidance counselor doubted that he had what it took.  […] I applied for lots of scholarships, and I ended up going to Carnegie Mellon. I graduated second in my class, and I won the Presidential Scholar Award. So they paid for the last two years of school. The whole time I was on other scholarships and worked about eight jobs.

Arts & Humanities

Carnegie Mellon professor Lee named to head architecture school
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review | June 1
Carnegie Mellon University has appointed Stephen Lee to head its School of Architecture. Stephen Lee, a Carnegie Mellon professor and alumnus who has served as the school's interim head since July 2008, succeeds Laura Lee, who stepped down to return to the university faculty, school officials said.


Seeing danger when there's none - and no danger when there is
South China Morning Post | May 31
People often depend on what the experts tell us - and the more we trust their advice, the more willing we are to take on risk. But we don't receive particularly good information to help us assess risks and, therefore, "are left to go on guesswork", says Baruch Fischhoff, a professor of decision science at Carnegie Mellon University. "If people are given good ... information, they make good decisions, but it's hard to get that information."

Information Technology

Carnegie Mellon expert praises creation of office to fight cyberthreats
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review | May 30
"He absolutely did what he needed to do," said Pradeep Khosla, dean of Carnegie Mellon University's Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. "Bringing cybersecurity to the White House level is absolutely step No. 1. Access to the president is what this issue needs."


Gov. Announces $76 Million Green Jobs Grant
WTAE-TV News | May 29
Oakland Transportation Management Association and Carnegie Mellon University will receive $150,000 to study methods for improving walkability, safety and multi-modal access along the Forbes Avenue and Fifth Avenue corridors. […] Carnegie Mellon University will receive $30,000 to create an online collaborative transportation planning network.

Regional Impact

$14.8 million targeted for pedestrians, bicyclists to ease road congestion
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review | May 30
The Oakland Transportation Management Association and Carnegie Mellon University will receive $150,000 to study adding pedestrian islands or changing parking patterns to improve walkability, safety and access to transit along Fifth and Forbes avenues near the Carnegie Mellon campus, said the transportation association's executive director Mavis Rainey. The study will look for ways to accommodate the burgeoning population of cyclists there, she said.


G-20's member nations carry a lot of weight
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | May 29
"It's basically a meeting of the financial leadership of a group of 20 significant countries to discuss international economic and financial issues," said Chester Spatt, chaired professor in finance at Carnegie Mellon University's Tepper School of Business.


FBI report shows decline in Pittsburgh crime
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | June 2
"I think it's fair to say that Pittsburgh is generally a low-crime place," said Alfred Blumstein, a criminologist at Carnegie Mellon University. Unlike many other major U.S. cities, Pittsburgh has a population base of large, extended families with deep roots here, a combination that lends itself to less crime.


46 Carnegie Mellon students on Dean’s List
Gulf Times | June 3
After excelling in the classroom during the Spring 2009 term, 46 students at Carnegie Mellon University in Qatar have earned the academic distinction of being placed on the Dean’s List. Only top-ranking students are named to The Dean’s List each semester. The qualifications for the Dean’s List are the same in Doha as they are on Carnegie Mellon’s home campus in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.


Computers "changing our values, language, culture"
IT Business | June 3
"We're in a big social experiment. Where it ends up, I don't know," says Dan Siewiorek, a professor of computer science and electrical and computer engineering and director of the Human-Computer Interaction Institute at Carnegie Mellon University."


A case of mind over technology?
BBC News | May 29
A similar idea from Carnegie Mellon University requires the user to identify and trace a specific object from a selection. Despite this proving much harder for computers and easier for humans, these kinds of tests have been criticised for not being proper captchas.