Carnegie Mellon University

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August 06, 2015

News Briefs

Webcast, CMWA Event Feature Negotiation Experts

Closing the GapCMU negotiation experts Ayana Ledford and Leanne Meyer will be featured guests on a live webcast from 4 to 5 p.m. EDT, Thursday, Aug. 13 as part of "Closing the Gap: 50 Years Seeking Equal Pay." The national, two-year multimedia campaign sponsored by WQED and the YWCA of Greater Pittsburgh explores why the gender pay gap persists and how to address it.

Ledford is the founding executive director for the Program for Research and Outreach on Gender Equity in Society (PROGRESS) at the Heinz College. Meyer is an executive coach and program director for the Carnegie Mellon Leadership and Negotiation Academy for Women. A joint program of the Tepper School of Business and the Heinz College, the academy will welcome its third cohort in September.

The Carnegie Mellon Women’s Association will host a watch party from 4 to 5 p.m. followed by a networking event from 5 to 7 p.m. on the first floor of Alumni House. To register for the event, see CMWA’s online registration form.

To view the webcast, expert bios and related content, visit

CMU Aims To Three-peat at "World Series of Hacking"

Carnegie Mellon’s cybersecurity team, The Plaid Parliament of Pwning, will compete for its third consecutive title at this year’s DefCon Capture the Flag competition. Widely considered the “World Series of Hacking,” the competition will be held Aug. 6 - 9 at the Paris and Bally’s hotels in Las Vegas.

“What happens during this contest reflects what’s being played out today between consumers and companies, as well as between nations,” said David Brumley, director of CyLab, Carnegie Mellon’s cybersecurity institute, and the team’s faculty adviser.

During the contest, 15 pre-qualified hacking teams from around the world attempt to find vulnerabilities in a set of software, and use that knowledge to hack other teams’ networks while protecting their own. Teams capture virtual “flags” and accumulate points.

“The goal is to survive against the best hackers in the world,” Brumley said. “Winning requires skill, knowledge and strategy.”

“This would be the first time a team has won three consecutive DefCon Capture the Flag competitions in a row,” said five-year veteran team member Tyler Nighswander. “The win would secure us a nice spot in DefCon history.”

The winning team will be crowned on Sunday, Aug. 9.

LearnLab Summer Camp Helps Attendees With Cognitive Tutors

LearnLabMore than 50 professionals and graduate students from around the world recently participated in the 11th annual LearnLab Summer School, an intensive one-week course to provide attendees with hands-on experience in designing, implementing and analyzing technology-enhanced learning (TEL) experiments.

This year's session had three tracks centered on intelligent tutor development, computer supported collaborative learning and educational data mining.

For their projects, attendees from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign's (UIUC) College of Engineering, used Cognitive Tutor Authoring Tools (CTAT) to create tutor-assisted, online problem sets for courses in the professional master of engineering programs. They also worked to determine the potential use of CTAT to track student progress as they move through tutor-based problem sets.

"I was really impressed overall with the projects and the questions that were asked," said LearnLab Director Ken Koedinger, professor of human-computer interaction and psychology. "I think it reflects how our learning science and engineering research has matured. Our tools and techniques have developed so people can really hit the ground running and accomplish a lot in one week."

Find out more.

CFA Lot Is Being Enlarged 

CFA LotFacilities Management Services is enlarging the College of Fine Arts parking lot to add 10 more parking spaces and to maximize space in anticipation of Spring Carnival 2016, which will be held on the CFA lot and CFA lawn.

During construction, which is expected to last through the week of Aug. 17, the south side of the lot closest to the Posner Center will be available for parking, but the north side adjacent to the tennis courts will be unavailable. Permit holders are being relocated to the East Campus Garage while work is in progress.

Questions on the reconfiguration should be directed to the FMS Service Response Center at 412-268-2910 or

Questions about parking should be directed to the Parking Office at 412-268-2052 or

Wean Hall PlazaWean Hall Plaza Closed Through Aug. 30

Access to the Wean Hall Plaza from Hamerschlag Hall, Porter Hall and Wean Hall will remain closed until Aug. 30 to expedite work on the waterproofing and restoration project. Only emergency access to the plaza will be permitted.

Work hours will be from 5 a.m. to 4 p.m. and 4 p.m. to midnight. Questions? Contact Max Dorosa at 412-527-5619.

Find out more about the project.

Newell-Simon Hall Closed Saturday, Aug. 8

There will be a full power shutdown at Newell-Simon Hall from 6 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 8. The building will be closed during this time.

If you have any questions, please contact the Service Response Center at 412-268-2910 or

Power Shutdown in Hamburg and Smith Halls, Aug. 8-9

There will be a total power shutdown in Hamburg Hall and Elliott Dunlap Smith Hall from 6 a.m., Saturday, Aug. 8, through 9 p.m., Sunday, Aug. 9. 

This work is necessary to replace the main electrical switchgear, which is part of the work for the Hamburg Hall addition and renovations. All mechanical and network systems in the buildings will be turned off.

Campus police will be on site for security and fire watch and only authorized personnel will be permitted in Hamburg and Smith halls during the outage.

If you have any questions, contact Ed Hydzik at 412-527-5621 or

UPDATE: Power Shutdown in Hamerschlag, Scaife and Roberts Halls, Aug. 11-12

Facilities Management Services and Campus Design and Facility Development have planned another full power shutdown affecting Hamerschlag Hall, Scaife Hall and Roberts Hall.

The scheduled outage will be 7 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 11 through 7 a.m., Wednesday, Aug. 12.

This is necessary to make high voltage power connections for the Scott Hall Project.

The power outage will impact all building systems not connected to the life safety generators. Therefore, the buildings will be closed during the outage.

If you have a special requirement that requires access into Hamerschlag Hall, Roberts Hall or Scaife Hall, you can obtain information on arranging a University Police escort by calling FMS Service Response at 412-268-2910.

UDPATE: CIC Drive To Close Aug. 12 and 15

CIC Drive ClosureAs part of the work to add chillers for campus cooling on the Robert Mehrabian Collaborative Innovation Center (CIC), several shutdowns have been scheduled for CIC Drive between the CIC and Hamburg Hall. The shutdowns will affect vehicular and pedestrian traffic, parking and access to nearby buildings.

Wednesday, Aug. 12, 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.
A crane will be assembled and used to lift steel to the roof of the CIC. Access to the Gates and Hillman centers, and Smith and Newell-Simon halls will be restricted from Forbes Avenue. All vehicular traffic and parking on CIC Drive will be prohibited. The sidewalk will be closed as well.

Thursday and Friday, Aug. 13-14
There will be no parking in the CIC Drive, however the drive will be open to vehicular and pedestrian traffic.

Saturday, Aug. 15, 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.
A crane will be assembled and used to lift piping and the new cooling towers to the roof of the CIC. Access to the Gates and Hillman centers, and Smith and Newell-Simon halls will be restricted from Forbes Avenue. All vehicular traffic and parking on CIC Drive will be prohibited, and the sidewalk will be closed as well.

PSO Offers Discounts for Summer Concerts

The Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra is offering discounts to upcoming shows at Heinz Hall. Students, faculty and staff receive a 10 percent discount off single ticket prices.

For all summer concerts in July and August, you can buy tickets to three concerts and receive 20 percent off the ticket price, or buy tickets to four or more concerts and receive 30 percent off the ticket price. Packaged ticket deals must be purchased in person at the Heinz Hall box office or by phone at 412-392-4900. Single tickets with the university discount can be purchased online.

Purchase tickets online.  

Discounts Available to Cedar Point, Sandcastle, Idlewild and Hershey Park

Staff Council is offering discounted tickets to CMU employees for Cedar Point, Sandcastle, Idlewild and Hershey Park. For ticket prices and purchasing information, go to Benefits & Discounts on the Staff Council website and click on Summer Discounts.

If you have any questions, please contact Sharon Cavlovich at or Nicole Stenger at