Carnegie Mellon University

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December 03, 2015

Personal Mention

Lisa MurphyLisa Murphy, a junior forward on Carnegie Mellon’s women’s basketball team, set an NCAA Division III record for consecutive field goals made with 16 in an 81-73 victory over LaRoche College this past Monday. Murphy scored a career-high 37 points in leading the Tartans (5-0) to their fifth straight win of the season. Dating back to the victory over Waynesburg on Nov. 24, Murphy has now hit 18 shots in a row and ties the NCAA Division III record for consecutive field goals made in a season with Alia Fischer of Washington University (1998) and Anjee Beard of Baldwin Wallace (2000). The Tartans host Oberlin College at 2 p.m. this Saturday, Dec. 5. Find out more.

Stelian CorosStelian Coros, an assistant professor of robotics, is one of just six recipients of the 2015 Intel Early Career Faculty Award, which honors faculty members who show great promise as future academic leaders in disruptive computing technologies. The program is designed to foster long-term collaborative relationships with senior Intel technical leaders and includes $25,000 to cover travel and other costs. Coros was a research scientist at Disney Research Zurich before joining the Robotics Institute. His research focuses on motor control, motion planning algorithms, physics-based simulation tools and computational design methods that leverage digital fabrication technologies. His goal is to enable the general public, with the aid of 3-D printing, to create physical devices to improve their own lives, such as robots that help with kitchen tasks, housekeeping and gardening; devices to assist people with disabilities, and even lovable characters for entertainment.

Allen RobinsonAllen Robinson, head of the Mechanical Engineering Department and the Raymond J. Lane Distinguished Professor, was elected to the ASME Mechanical Engineering Department Heads Executive Committee for a two-year term. The group pursues a variety of educational related initiatives, collects and disseminates best practices between departments and provides input to ASME from an education perspective. Learn more about Robinson.

Stephen FienbergStephen Fienberg, the Maurice Falk University Professor of Statistics and Social Science, was recently featured in an interview on StatisticsViews, a website designed for professional statisticians, analysts and students as a clearinghouse of statistical research. In the interview, Fienberg discussed his educational background and career path, including his work at Carnegie Mellon, Big Data and the future of the statistics field. Read more.

Diane TurnshekDiane Turnshek, special lecturer in the Department of Physics, received a Dark Sky Defender Award from the International Dark-Sky Association (IDA). The award is given in appreciation of the recipients’ efforts to further the IDA's mission to preserve the night skies by promoting quality outdoor nighttime lighting. Turnshek was recognized for her outreach efforts against the spread of light pollution in Pittsburgh. Along with Astro Club presidents Alex Gurvich, a senior physics major, and Matthew Finlay, a 2013 CMU graduate, Turnshek created, which features an interactive map with stars marking all the points of astronomical interest in Pittsburgh and an art contest that asks the question, "What is our Pittsburgh constellation?" She also coordinates the Astronomy Enthusiasts list, sending monthly emails with astronomy-related activities to hundreds of Pittsburghers who love the dark, star-filled sky. Turnshek collaborates with CMU’s Remaking Cities Institute, International Earth Hour, the Pittsburgh Mayor’s Office of Sustainability (Department of Innovation and Performance) and the Green Building Alliance.

Chrissy MoffattKathy ProchKathy Proch (right), associate controller, and Chrissy Moffatt (far right), director of Taxation and Accounts Payable, presented "Re-Engineering Tax Reporting for Greater Returns" at the National Association of College and University Business Officers (NACUBO) 2015 Tax Forum in Chicago last month. Their presentation included a background of IRS audit challenges in higher education, how CMU successfully re-engineered the university’s tax reporting process, and opportunities for attendees to share experiences related to their own university’s tax reporting processes. Find out more about NACUBO.

Di WangDi Wang's system to rapidly answer questions posed to the Yahoo! Answers website received the highest score in the LiveQA evaluation track at Text Retrieval Conference (TREC) 2015. Wang, a Ph.D. student in the Language Technologies Institute (LTI), a Yahoo! InMind fellow and a member of Professor Eric Nyberg's Open Advancement of Question Answering group, used a Deep Learning approach to develop the system for the TREC evaluation, building on more than 10 years of question-answering research at the LTI. Question answering is one of the hottest areas of artificial intelligence today, as many companies recognize it as being the next generation of online search. Find out more.

Joao MotaAlumnus João Mota was recently honored with the 2015 IEEE SPS Young Author Best Paper Award for his paper "Distributed Basis Pursuit,” which was published in the IEEE Transactions on Signal Processing in 2012. Mota earned a Ph.D. in electrical and computer engineering at the Instituto Superior Técnico and Carnegie Mellon in 2013. His dissertation was titled "Communication-Efficient Algorithms For Distributed Optimization." Mota's research interests include optimization theory and algorithms, big data processing, compressed sensing, distributed algorithms, control, machine learning and sensor networks. Find out more.