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News Clips - November 20, 2009

From November 13 to November 19, Carnegie Mellon Media Relations counted 422 references to the university in worldwide publications. Here is a sample.


A surplus of energy that might even last
The New York Times | November 18
In fact, if this recession is an inflection point, it is not the first. Jay Apt, a professor at Carnegie Mellon University and executive director of its Electricity Industry Center, said that growth in use of electricity had been exponential from the 1950s until about 1973, and linear since then. Part of the reason was that by 1973, “We’d just about finished air-conditioning the country,” he said.


Intelligence squared US announces change in lineup for November 16th debate on Obama economic policies | November 13
The fourth debate of Intelligence Squared US's fall season is on the motion, Obama's economic policies are working effectively. The debate is scheduled to take place in New York at Skirball Center for the Performing Arts, NYU, 566 LaGuardia Place at Washington Square South on Monday, November 16th at 6:45PM. […] Debating against the motion: Eliot Spitzer, former Governor and Attorney General of New York State; James K. Galbraith, Economist and Professor of Government/ Business Relations at the University of Texas at Austin; Allan Meltzer, Economist and Professor of Political Economy at Carnegie Mellon University's Tepper School of Business.

Arts and Humanities

How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying
Pittsburgh City Paper | November 19
And fortunately, Daniel Goldstein, the director of this Carnegie Mellon production, keeps our focus on the story. With the help of an unbelievably clever set design by Kellan Andersen, Goldstein creates a laser-sharp, slick and professional How to Succeed that serves as a highly polished setting for this student company. The cast includes Tess Soltau's funny turn as Miss Jones; Nick Cosgrove's energetically evil Frump; Lora Lee Gayer's impeccably sung Rosemary; and Skye Scott using just about every trick imaginable (including boundless talent) to make Finch the heel you hate to love.


Facial structure may hold clues to aggression
U.S. News & World Report | November 13
A quick look at a person's innate facial structure may be enough to determine if he or she acts aggressively, a new study says. New research published in the current issue of the journal Psychological Science suggests that facial width-to-height ratio discloses one's propensity toward aggression -- specifically the ratio of the distance between the right and left cheeks and the distance from the upper lip to the mid-brow.  […] Learn more about facial expressions from Carnegie Mellon University.

Information Technology

Spam's new flavours: Filtering keeps more unwanted messages inboxes but provokes more sophisticated scams
The Goldstein Report | November 19
When Luis von Ahn gives talks on his work fighting spam, he likes to start by asking the audience a question. "How many of you have had to fill out one of those web forms that asks you to read a distorted sequence of letters or a word?" he asks. "How many of you found that annoying?" [...] Von Ahn is a professor of computer science at Carnegie Mellon University and was the recipient of a MacArthur "genius grant" worth $500,000 in 2006. His work on the "captcha" - those irritating automated tests that help distinguish humans from computers - is probably one of the most important advances in spam-fighting since the birth of email.


Testing method has Cellumen poised for growth
Pittsburgh Business Times | November 13
Alan Waggoner, a professor of biological sciences at Carnegie Mellon University who helped found Cellumen, said a way to determine drug toxicity sooner will reduce drug development costs. “These assays could save them hundreds of million of dollars in the long run,” he said.^2438631


Casey discusses climate change bill at Carnegie Mellon
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | November 14
In a speech at Carnegie Mellon University, Mr. Casey emphasized the potential for green energy initiatives to boost employment as well as enhance national security. In his 25-minute address, he sketched an optimistic picture of how the transition to a clean energy economy could revitalize the state's and the nation's economies.

Regional Impact

Water, water everywhere: Pittsburgh deals with a crumbling system
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | November 15
"Residential rates are going to have to go up," warned Robert P. Strauss, professor of economics and public policy at Carnegie Mellon University's Heinz College, who guided students this spring in a study of the authority's physical and fiscal problems. The authority is "servicing a $700 million-plus debt and you're just plugging leaks" rather than fixing underlying problems.


Newsmaker: Alan McGaughey
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review | November 16
Background: Assistant professor of mechanical engineering at Carnegie Mellon University since 2005. Notable: Received a $965,874, three-year grant from the National Science Foundation to, with his team, develop materials to improve electronic systems for the aerospace industry.


52 students leave for studies in Australia
The Nation | November 13
The Australian High Commissioner, Tim George, Thursday bade farewell to 52 recipients of Australian Scholarships for Australia. These talented Pakistani students are about to begin Masters level studies in that education-friendly country, said a press release. The scholarships, which highlighted the strong development partnership between Australia and Pakistan, have been awarded under two programmes, namely Australian Development Scholarships Programme and the Aus AID-Carnegie Mellon University Scholarships Programme.


Customizing electric cars for cost-effective urban commuting
New | November 13
Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University's Robotics Institute have come up with a novel approach of customizing electric cars for cost-effective commuting. The project named ChargeCar led by Illah Nourbakhsh, associate professor of robotics, is exploring how electric vehicles can be customized to cost-effectively meet an individual's specific commuting needs.