[cs-talks] Upcoming Seminars: Hariri (Thurs) + IVC (Thurs)

cs, Group cs at bu.edu
Fri Apr 17 10:18:49 EDT 2015

Taming Uncertainty, Scale, and Change: A Programming Language Perspective
Suresh Jagannathan, Purdue University
Thursday, April 23, 2015 at 3:00pm in Hariri 180

Abstract:  The modern-day software ecosystem is a messy and chaotic one. Among other things, it includes an intricate stack of sophisticated services and components, susceptible to frequent (and often incompatible) upgrades and patches; emerging applications that operate over large, unstructured, and noisy data; and, an ever growing code base replete with latent defects and redundancies. Devising novel techniques to tame this complexity, and improve software resilience, trustworthiness, and expressivity in the process, is a common theme actively being explored by several ongoing DARPA programs. This talk gives an overview of three such efforts - PPAML (Probabilistic Programming Advancing Machine Learning), MUSE (Mining and Understanding Software Enclaves), and BRASS (Building Resource Adaptive Software Systems). These programs have seemingly disparate goals - PPAML seeks to democratize machine learning through the use of probabilistic programming abstractions; MUSE aims to exploit predictive analytics over large software corpora to repair and synthesize programs; and, BRASS is concerned with devising self-adaptive software capable of automatically responding to changes in its operating environment. Despite their outward differences, however, all three programs nonetheless critically rely on common foundational advances in programming language design, analysis, and implementation to realize their vision, and share an overarching goal to revolutionize the way we think about software construction and reliability.

Bio: Suresh Jagannathan joined the Information Innovation Office (I2O) at DARPA as a Program Manager in 2013. He is currently on leave from Purdue University where is a Professor of Computer Science. He has been a visiting faculty scholar at Cambridge University, and prior to joining Purdue, was a Senior Research Scientist at the NEC Research Institute. His interests are in programming languages generally, with specific interests in program verification and analysis, concurrent and distributed systems, functional programming, and compiler design. He received his Ph.D from MIT.

IVC Seminar
The Design and Use of MIT Sloop Retrieval Engine for Animal Biometrics
Sai Ravela, MIT
Thursday, April 23, 2015 at 4:00 pm in MCS B29

Abstract: Identifying individuals in photographs of animals collected over time is a non-invasive approach for ecological monitoring and conservation. This paper describes the design and use of Sloop (sloop.mit.edu), for animal biometrics incorporating crowd-sourced relevance feedback. Sloop's iterative retrieval strategy using hierarchical and aggregated matching and relevance feedback consistently improves deformation and correspondence-based approaches across several species. Its crowdsourcing strategy is successful in utilizing relevance feedback on a large scale. Sloop is in operational use. The user experience and results are presented here to facilitate the creation of a community-based ecological informatics system for conservation planning.

Bio: Sai Ravela directs the Earth Signals and Systems Group (ESSG) in the Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. His primary research interests are in stochastic systems science with application to Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences. He conducts this research through various projects including Autonomous Observation (caos.mit.edu), Animal Biometrics (sloop.mit.edu), Fluid Imaging (flux.mit.edu), Statistical Inference for Coherent Fluids (stics.mit.edu) and Hurricane Risk(hazmet.mit.edu). Dr. Ravela completed a PostDoc in Atmospheric Science and Stochastic Systems from MIT in 2004, and received a PhD in 2003 in Computer Science from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, specializing in Computer Vision, Multimedia Retrieval and Robotics. He is the co-founder of Windrisktech LLC, a company that uses Learning and Physics to quantify risk from hurricanes, and E5 Aerospace LLC, that builds novel designs of aircraft systems for autonomous observation.
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