March 15, 2019
Writing for The Wall Street Journal, visiting lecturer Irving Wladawsky-Berger spotlights how the new MIT Schwarzman College of Computing aims to educate students from every discipline on how to responsibly use and develop AI technologies. Wladawsky-Berger notes that “such an interdisciplinary initiative is a truly bold step for any institution.”
Writing for Forbes, Prof. David Mindell examines how the operation and implementation of the Apollo 11 flight software provides crucial lessons for driverless vehicles. “Testing, software controls, and risk analyses have the problem of embedding our imagination of what’s likely to happen,” writes Mindell.
Washington Post reporter Martin Weil spotlights the work of Prof. Fernando Corbató, who “drastically expanded the usefulness of the computer and put its benefits at the reach of all.” Weil notes that Corbató, who died on July 12, “fostered the digital revolution by developing shared computer operating systems and also put his stamp on daily life by introducing the computer password.”
Writing for The Boston Globe, Shirley Leung spotlights the thousands of women who helped make the Apollo 11 mission a success, including Margaret Hamilton and Saydean Zeldin of the MIT Instrumentation Lab. Zeldin, who worked on the program responsible for turning the command module’s engines on and off, recalls that she “had to formulate the equations that we were going to code.”
MIT Solve has launched an innovation fund aimed at attracting funding for social-impact ventures tackling global issues such as access to clean water, reports Eillie Anzilotti for Fast Company. “There’s an increase in focus on these issues in the U.S. and across the world, and there’s definitely increased movement on the political and investment spectrums,” explains Alex Amouyel, executive director of Solve.
MIT researchers have found that online restaurant data can be used to accurately predict key socioeconomic factors for neighborhoods in China, reports the Xinhua news agency. The researchers found that “in nine Chinese cities, the presence of restaurants could effectively predict a neighborhood's daytime and nighttime population, the number of businesses and overall spending.”
STAT reporter Rebecca Robbins spotlights how the MIMIC database of de-identified medical records has helped advance AI research in medicine. “If you are developing an algorithm, let’s say for decision support or prediction, and you’re using machine learning, then you need a huge number of examples — and there are virtually no open-source databases like this,” explains Prof. Roger Mark. It’s the only one in town, pretty much.”