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Electrical Engineering & Computer Science (eecs)

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The Economist

The Economist spotlights alumna Lisa Su S.B. ’90, S.M. ’91, PhD ’94, who is the chief executive of the chip maker AMD. “I learned that when I chose something very difficult, and did well, it would give me great confidence for the next challenge,” says Su.

TechCrunch

TechCrunch reporter Brian Heater writes about Inkbit, a CSAIL spinout, which is developing self-correcting 3D printing technology. “Its primary differentiator from the slew of existing 3D printers is a vision and AI system designed to identify and correct mistakes during the printing process,” writes Heater.

Forbes

Institute Prof. Barbara Liskov, Prof. Dina Katabi, Prof. Dava Newman, Prof. Daniela Rus and a number of MIT alumnae and MIT Corporation members have been named to the Academic Influence list of the most influential women engineers in the world, reports Michael T. Nietzel for Forbes.

The Wall Street Journal

MIT researchers have developed a new robot that can help locate hidden items using AI and wireless technologies, reports Benoit Morenne for The Wall Street Journal. “The latest version of the robot has a 96% success rate at finding and picking up objects in a lab setting, including clothes and household items,” writes Morenne. “In the future, this home helper could also retrieve a specific wrench or screwdriver from a toolbox and assist a human in assembling a piece of furniture.”

New York Times

New York Times reporter Siobhan Roberts spotlights how Prof. Erik Demaine and his father Martin Demaine, a robotics engineer at CSAIL and an artist-in-resident at EECS, are designing “‘algorithmic puzzle fonts,’ a suite of mathematically inspired typefaces that are also puzzles.” The Demaines explained that: “Scientists use fonts every day to express their research through the written word. But what if the font itself communicated (the spirit of) the research? What if the way text is written, and not just the text itself, engages the reader in the science?”

The Boston Globe

Ginkgo Bioworks founders Jason Kelly PhD ’08, S.B. ’03 and Reshma Shetty PhD ’08 speak with Boston Globe reporter Scott Kirsner about the inspiration for and growth of the company, which is focused on manipulating genetic material to get living cells to perform new jobs. Shetty notes that the Ginkgo Bioworks team is “dedicated to making biology easier to engineer."

Popular Mechanics

MIT researchers have developed new programmable fibers that could help transform clothing into wearable computers, reports Kyle Mizokami for Popular Mechanics. “The polymer fibers contain hundreds of tiny silicon microchips that, once electrified, can sustain a digital connection across tens of meters,” Mizokami writes.

Forbes

Forbes contributor Eric Tegler spotlights how MIT researchers are developing a fiber with digital capabilities. “Individuals wearing garments with digital fibers could be alerted to vital information about their physiology and environmental exposures, and share health/injury and location data with support forces,” Tegler explains.

United Press International (UPI)

UPI reporter Brooks Hays writes that researchers from MIT and other institutions have developed a programmable digital fiber that can capture, store and analyze data. The technology could “be paired with machine learning algorithms and used to make smart fabrics to record health data and aid medical diagnosis,” writes Hays.

Associated Press

An electric, autonomous boat developed by MIT researchers is being tested in the canals of Amsterdam as part of an effort to ease traffic, reports Aleksandar Furtula and Mike Corder for the AP. The Roboat project is aimed at developing “new ways of navigating the world’s waterways without a human hand at the wheel,” write Furtula and Corder. “The vessels are modular so they can be easily adapted for different purposes, carrying cargo or workers.”

Fast Company

Fast Company reporter Mark Wilson writes that MIT researchers have developed a new light-sensitive paint, dubbed ChromoUpdate, that makes it easy for people to change the color and pattern on a variety of objects. Wilson notes there are a number of applications for ChromoUpdate, from testing out different colors on a product to “quickly projecting what is essentially data onto everyday objects could make smart homes even smarter, without the use of more screens in your house.”

Science

In an editorial for Science, Prof. Sangeeta Bhatia, Prof. Emerita Nancy Hopkins and President Emerita Susan Hockfield underscore the importance of addressing the underrepresentation of women and minorities in tech transfer. “The discoveries women and minority researchers are making today have great potential as a force for good in the world,” they write, “but reaching that potential is only possible if paths to real-world applications are open to everybody.”

Wired

Wired reporter Will Knight spotlights how MIT researchers have showed that “an AI program trained to verify that code will run safely can be deceived by making a few careful changes, like substituting certain variables, to create a harmful program.”

WSHU

Profs. Elsa Olivetti and Christopher Knittel speak with J.D. Allen of WSHU about the future of renewable energy in New England. Olivetti notes that the MIT Climate & Sustainability Consortium is aimed at “looking at the role of industry in helping to accelerate the transition to reduce carbon emissions, and the idea is that by convening a set of cross economy, leading companies with the MIT community, we can identify pathways towards decarbonization particularly focused on those industries outside of the energy producing sector.”

Mashable

CSAIL researchers have developed a new material with embedded sensors that can track a person’s movement, reports Mashable. The clothing could “track things like posture or give feedback on how you’re walking.”