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News Clips - November 19, 2010

From November 12 to November 18, Carnegie Mellon Media Relations counted 200 references to the university in worldwide publications. Here is a sample.


Shiv Nadar foundation, CMU announce partnership
Times of India | November 11
Solidifying their strategic partnership, the Shiv Nadar Foundation and Carnegie Mellon University today announced their intent to make Carnegie Mellon's world-class undergraduate programs in mechanical engineering  and electrical and computer engineering more available to Indian students.


Billion-pixel image tool probes science mysteries
National Geographic | November 12
GigaPan—the ultra-zoomable imaging technology—is enabling novel research in archaeology, zoology, and many other scientific fields, experts said this week. The system stitches thousands of closeup images together into panoramas of thousand-megapixel resolution, which are hosted at the Gigapan website and viewable from anywhere in the world. Robotics professor Illah Nourbakhsh's CREATE Lab at Carnegie Mellon University first created the technology, which uses a robotic camera mount, a software package, and a digital camera.

Education for Leadership

Accelerator: REBIScan starting trials
Pittsburgh Business Times | November 12
This is the fourth installment of a monthly series about Carnegie Mellon University’s Accelerator program, which is spinning out five student-led companies. CMU’s Donald H. Jones Center for Entrepreneurship launched the program in June as a way to link graduate students at the Tepper School of Business to the broader marketplace. This month's installment is about one of the start-ups, REBIScan.

Arts and Humanities

Carnegie Mellon's Hayes wins National Book Award
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | November 18
Terrance Hayes is bringing it home to Pittsburgh. On the eve of his 39th birthday, the Carnegie Mellon University professor and poet celebrated by winning the National Book Award in poetry here Wednesday night. Mr. Hayes' collection, "Lighthead," captured the $10,000 award in competition against four other established poets, including C.D. Wright.

Information Technology

Making good use of your computer time | November 12
When you make sense of a "Completely Automated Public Turing Test To Tell Computers and Humans Apart" or captcha, you are also helping online search giant Google digitise books and newspapers. Books are digitised using the optical character recognition (OCR) software. But OCR cannot understand all words. These words appear gibberish and the software fails to understand them, but we as humans can decipher these words. While humans can read distorted text, computers are still far away from doing so. The word captcha was coined in 2000 by Prof Luis von Ahn and his colleagues from Carnegie Mellon University (CMU).


Algorithm matches kidneys more efficiently
International Business Times | November 18
An algorithm developed by a computer scientist at Carnegie Mellon University could drastically improve the efficiency of matching kidney donors to recipients, and save lives in the process. Tuomas Sandholm, a professor of computer science, designed a program that takes pairs of donors and recipients and checks them against other pairs. The algorithm then checks to see if the people in the pairs are a better match for people in the next pair. For example, in a situation with two pairs, donor A might not be a good match for recipient A, but a better match for recipient B. Meanwhile, donor B might be a better match for recipient A.


Can computer code be greener? Facebook thinks so
Fast Company | November 12
Some programming languages are more energy efficient than others because they simply run faster. A program that can be executed faster reduces the load on a central processing unit, which in turn demands less energy from the massive data centers run by Facebook that pull electricity from the grid. The question, "Which programming languages are greenest?" is actually just another way of asking which produces the fastest code, says David Andersen, an assistant professor of computer science at Carnegie Mellon. "That's a question we computer geeks love to fight about."

Regional Impact

Chinese students flood universities in region
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | November 15
Three years ago, 32 students from China were enrolled on the rural campus. By this fall, the number had more than tripled to 106. Sure, it's a modest sum compared with the 1,638 Chinese students attending Penn State University, up 38 percent in just one year, or enrollments of 789 and 782 Chinese students, respectively, at the University of Pittsburgh and Carnegie Mellon University. Both Pittsburgh schools saw double-digit gains this year. Just the same, the trend at IUP illustrates one reason why a national report being released today shows China has become the top sender of college students to the United States. Experts say the flow of students from that country is permeating not only the major cities and campuses with the highest profiles abroad, but a much wider swath of schools.


CMU, incubator land $1M
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | November 13
A partnership between Carnegie Mellon University's Tepper School of Business and local startup incubator Innovation Works has won a $1 million grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce. The prize will be used over the next two years to increase the organizations' efforts to commercialize university research and nurture local startups. The private-public partnership is part of the first class of recipients of the i6 Challenge grant from the Commerce Department's Economic Development Administration.