Shuguang Zhang, associate director of the Center for Biomedical Engineering, has been granted a Guggenheim Fellowship for 2006. He is one of 187 people selected for the 2006 fellowships, which are given "on the basis of distinguished achievement in the past and exceptional promise for future accomplishment." His research focuses on developing a biosolar nanodevice for direct harvest of solar energy. Zhang also recently was named a recipient of the Wilhelm Exner Medal, which is awarded by the Austrian Gewerbeverein (Industrial Association) for groundbreaking research that has particular importance for industry.
Tod Machover, composer, inventor and professor of media arts and sciences, has been appointed visiting professor of composition at London's Royal Academy of Music (RAM). Head of the Media Lab's Hyperinstruments/Opera of the Future group, Machover has composed five operas and leads the group that invented Hyperinstruments, a technology that uses smart computers to augment virtuosity. "The RAM appointment will give me access to some of the world's best musicians and a way to get a lot of our work -- especially Hyperinstruments for virtuosi -- out to the musical mainstream," said Machover, who is currently working on a robotic opera with a libretto by poet Robert Pinsky. Other current visiting professors at RAM include composer Peter Maxwell Davies and violinist Joshua Bell.
James DiCarlo, assistant professor of brain and cognitive sciences, has been selected to receive a 2006 McKnight Scholar Award. The McKnight Endowment Fund for Neuroscience is an independent charitable organization that supports young and established neuroscientists and encourages interdisciplinary collaboration. The award is $75,000 per year for three years.