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List of Announcements (details below):


*         This Week at the Volgenau School

*         VSE in the News

*         Photo of the Week

*         Upcoming Events at the Volgenau School

*         CS Seminar: David Crandall (Tue Mar 21, 2:30pm)

*         CS Seminar: Nanyun (Violet) Peng (Thu Mar 23, 2:30pm)

*         Mason Graduate Interdisciplinary Conference (Sat Mar 25)

*         DOE Grad Student Research Program

*         John Shortle Receives Funding from NSF

*         Qiliang Li Receives Funding from VMEC

*         Dimitrios Ioannou Receives Funding from VMEC

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This Week at the Volgenau School

Last week was Spring Break.  A side effect of Spring Break is that the bagel place on the first floor of our building closes, and with that vanishes my standard source of coffee.  The bagel place may not satisfy the most obsessive<http://www.seriouseats.com/2014/06/make-better-pourover-coffee-how-pourover-works-temperature-timing.html> of coffee drinkers, but it's decent and it's convenient.

So what are my alternatives?  I could walk to the Johnson Center and go to Starbucks.  But with the weather last week that option was out.

There is a Keurig machine in the Dean's office, but I'm never satisfied with the coffee you get from a K-cup.  The Washington Post recently wrote about how to hack a Keurig machine<https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/food/how-to-hack-your-keurig-machine-and-get-a-better-cup-of-coffee/2017/02/27/93b27e02-f7d1-11e6-be05-1a3817ac21a5_story.html?utm_term=.24b7a3a7b564> to get better coffee.  However, I'm not willing to take actions such as these with someone else's machine.

I could make my own coffee.  I could bring in my own beans, grind them here, and use one of the drip coffee makers in our office suite.  But I've become accustomed to the flavor I get at home with my conical burr grinder<https://prima-coffee.com/learn/section/buying-guides/grinders>, and I am not willing to purchase another one just for the weeks when the bagel place is closed.  Nor am I willing to carry my grinder back and forth from home.  So this wasn't happening.

I ended up drinking tea.  I'm less fussy about tea.

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VSE in the News

Here is a list of news stories about VSE that have been posted:

Beyond Mason

*         GCN<https://gcn.com/articles/2017/02/14/iarpa-create.aspx?m=2>: Article about the IARPA's CREATE program which refers Mason's Co-Arg --Cogent Argumentation System with Crowd Elicitation.

On the Mason News page (https://www2.gmu.edu/news)

*         Mason researcher's Amulet bracelet goes beyond fitness tracking<https://www2.gmu.edu/news/389426>. Vivian Motti, Assistant Professor, Information Sciences and Technology, and her team of investigators designed and developed Amulet, an electronic bracelet and software framework that enables developers to create user-friendly mobile health applications.

On the Volgenau site (https://volgenau.gmu.edu/news/latest-news)

*         U.S. News Ranks SEOR Grad Programs #27<https://content.gmu.edu/node/390066>. The Department of Systems Engineering and Operations Research was ranked #27 in the 2018 U.S. News survey.

*         Melissa Lobaccaro receives George Mason Provost Scholar Award<https://volgenau.gmu.edu/news/390056>. For the third consecutive year, scholar athlete and CEIE student receives the Provost's Scholar Award.

If you have suggestions for other stories, please submit them to Martha Bushong, [log in to unmask]<mailto:[log in to unmask]>.

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Photo of the Week

[cid:[log in to unmask]]

Vivian Motti, Assistant Professor, Information Sciences and Technology, and her team of investigators designed and developed Amulet, an electronic bracelet and software framework that enables developers to create user-friendly mobile health applications. (Photo by Ron Aria).

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Upcoming Events at the Volgenau School

Whether you're looking for a specific event or browsing, our calendar lets you know what's happening at Volgenau. Here is a sample of what's coming in the next several weeks. For more information visit our calendar<https://volgenau.gmu.edu/events#/?i=1> on the web. From this page you can share the event on social media, get updates, forward to friends, or save it to your own calendar.

March 20, 3:00 p.m. - Bioengineering Seminar, Dr. Anne Taylor
March 21, 3:30 p.m. - Graduate Student Coffee
March 22, 1:00 p.m. - Mason Digital Forensics - Infragard Insider Threat Meeting
                  5:30 p.m. - CEIE Seminar
March 24, 9:30 a.m. - Bioengineering Seminar, Dr. Adam Maxwell
March 27, 3:00 p.m. - Bioengineering Seminar, Dr. Ben Urban
March 28, 7:30 p.m. - ASCE Student Mixer
March 30, 11:30 a.m. - CEI Annual Meeting and Luncheon

For information on getting your event posted via 25Live, please visit scheduling.gmu.edu<http://scheduling.gmu.edu/>.

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CS Seminar: David Crandall (Tue Mar 21, 2:30pm)

CS Seminar: Egocentric computer vision, for fun and science

When: Tuesday, March 21, 2017 from 2:30 PM to 3:30 PM
Location: Research Hall, Room 163

Speaker: David Crandall, Associate Professor in the School of Informatics and Computing at Indiana University Bloomington .

Abstract

New sources of large-scale visual data raise both opportunities and challenges for computer vision. For example, each of the nearly trillion photos on Facebook is an observation of what the world looked like at a particular point in time and space, and what a particular photographer was paying attention to. Meanwhile, low-cost wearable cameras (like GoPro) are entering the mainstream, allowing people to record and share their lives from a first-person, "egocentric" perspective. How can vision help people organize these (and other) vast but noisy datasets? What could mining these rich datasets reveal about ourselves and about the world in general? In this talk, I'll describe recent work investigating these questions, focusing on two lines of work on egocentric imagery as examples. The first is for consumer applications, where our goal is to develop automated classifiers to help categorize lifelogging images across several dimensions. The second is an interdisciplinary project using computer vision with wearable cameras to study parent-child interactions in order to better understand child learning. Despite the different goals, these applications share common themes of robustly recognizing image content in noisy, highly dynamic, unstructured imagery.

Biography

David Crandall is an Associate Professor in the School of Informatics and Computing at Indiana University Bloomington, where he is a member of the programs in Computer Science, Informatics, Cognitive Science, and Data Science, and of the Center for Complex Networks and Systems Research. He received the Ph.D. in computer science from Cornell University in 2008 and the M.S. and B.S. degrees in computer science and engineering from the Pennsylvania State University in 2001.  He was a Postdoctoral Research Associate at Cornell from 2008-2010, and a Senior Research Scientist with Eastman Kodak Company from 2001-2003. He received an NSF CAREER award in 2013 and a Google Faculty Research Award in 2014.

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CS Seminar: Nanyun (Violet) Peng (Thu Mar 23, 2:30pm)

CS Seminar: Representation Learning with Joint Models for Information Extraction

When: Thursday, March 23, 2017 from 02:30 PM to 03:30 PM
Location: Research Hall, Room 163

Speaker: Nanyun (Violet) Peng, PhD candidate, Computer Science Department, The Johns Hopkins University

Abstract

There is abundant knowledge out there carried in the form of natural language texts, such as social media posts, scientific research literature, medical records, etc., which grows at an astonishing rate. Yet this knowledge is mostly inaccessible to computers and overwhelming for human experts to absorb. Information extraction (IE) processes raw texts to produce machine understandable structured information, thus dramatically increasing the accessibility of knowledge through search engines, interactive AI agents, and medical research tools. However, traditional IE systems assume abundant human annotations for training high quality machine learning models, which is impractical when trying to deploy IE systems to a broad range of domains, settings and languages. In this talk, I will present how to leverage the distributional statistics of characters and words, the annotations for other tasks and other domains, and the linguistics and problem structures, to combat the problem of inadequate supervision, and conduct information extraction with scarce human annotations.

Biography

Nanyun (Violet) Peng is a PhD candidate in the Department of Computer Science at Johns Hopkins University, affiliated with the Center for Language and Speech Processing and advised by Dr. Mark Dredze. She is broadly interested in Natural Language Processing, Machine Learning, and Information Extraction. Her research focuses on using deep learning for information extraction with scarce human annotations. Nanyun is the recipient of the Johns Hopkins University 2016 Fred Jelinek Fellowship. She has completed two research internships at IBM T.J. Watson Research Center, and Microsoft Research Redmond. She holds a master's degree in Computer Science and BAs in Computational Linguistics and Economics, all from Peking University.

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Mason Graduate Interdisciplinary Conference (Sat Mar 25)

The Mason Interdisciplinary Conference is a one-day event focusing on research presentations:
    Saturday, March 25
    Founders Hall, Arlington Campus, GMU
9am to 6pm

Schedule:
    8:45am-3:00pm: Registration
    9:15am:  Opening Remarks
    10:30-11:45am:  Oral Presentations: Session 1
    12:00-1:30pm:  Lunch
    12:30-1:30pm:  Poster Presentations
    1:30-2:45pm:  Oral Presentations: Session 2
    3:00-4:30pm:  Three-Minute Thesis Competition
    4:30-6:00pm:  Evening Reception & 3MT Awards

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DOE Grad Student Research Program

The Office of Science Graduate Student Research (SCGSR) program at the Department of Energy is accepting applications for its 2017 Solicitation 1 opportunity.  Applications are due 5:00 pm ET on Tuesday, May 16, 2017. Access to the application materials, and additional program information, are available athttps://science.energy.gov/wdts/scgsr/.

The SCGSR program supports supplemental awards to outstanding U.S. graduate students to conduct part of their graduate thesis research at a DOE national laboratory in collaboration with a DOE laboratory scientist for a period of 3 to 12 consecutive months with the goal of preparing graduate students for scientific and technical careers critically important to the DOE/Office of Science mission.

The SCGSR program is open to current Ph.D. students in qualified graduate programs at accredited U.S. academic institutions who are conducting their graduate thesis research in targeted areas of importance to the DOE Office of Science. The research opportunity is expected to advance the graduate students' overall doctoral thesis/dissertation while providing access to the expertise, resources, and capabilities available at the DOE laboratories and facilities. The supplemental award provides for additional, incremental costs for living and travel expenses directly associated with conducting the SCGSR research project at the DOE host laboratory during the award period.

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John Shortle Receives Funding from NSF

John Shortle of the Systems Engineering & Operations Research Department received $5K from the National Science Foundation for his project, "Workshop: Towards an Ecosystem of Simulation Models and Data; 5th INFORMS Simulation Society Research Workshop; University of Durham; United Kingdom; July 31 to August 2, 2017."

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Qiliang Li Receives Funding from VMEC

Qiliang Li of the Electrical & Computer Engineering Department received $15K from the Virginia Microelectronics Consortium for his project, "Graphene Chemical Vapor Sensor Measurement System."

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Dimitrios Ioannou Receives Funding from VMEC

Dimitrios Ioannou of the Electrical & Computer Engineering Department received $15K from the Virginia Microelectronics Consortium for his project, "Junctionless FET-based FeRAM with Glassy-Polymer Electret Gate Dielectrics."

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Stephen G. Nash
Senior Associate Dean
Volgenau School of Engineering
George Mason University
Nguyen Engineering Building, Room 2500
Mailstop 5C8
Fairfax, VA 22030

[log in to unmask]
Phone: (703) 993-1505
Fax: (703) 993-1633
https://volgenau.gmu.edu/profile/view/10248