The main focus of my recent research has been computer science education and the role computer science can play in defining and advancing its own education research. Learning computational principles and learning to code is hard, and teaching these subjects is even harder. For most computer science topics, we know very little about how different learners’ best learn; how to effectively teach the material to audiences with different abilities, backgrounds, and goals; and how to reliably assess learning.
Posts categorized under: CRA Board of Directors
The CRA Board of Directors is a distinguished group of leaders in computing research from academia and industry. The Board provides the membership for various standing committees, including the Government Affairs, Snowbird Conference, Taulbee Survey, Finance, and Elections committees.
CRA members have elected two new members to its board of directors: Carla Brodley and Kim Hazelwood. Current board members Nancy Amato, Susan Davidson, Dan Grossman, Brent Hailpern, Susanne Hambrusch, Barbara Ryder and Ellen Zegura were re-elected to the CRA board. Also beginning July 1, Brian Noble will be the USENIX representative to the CRA board replacing Margo Seltzer. Retiring from the board as of June 30, 2017 are David Culler, Mary Czerwinski and Seltzer. CRA thanks them all for contributions during their service on the board.
At the CRA board meeting on February 28, the CRA board of directors voted to re-elect its current board officers to serve new two-year terms beginning July 1, 2017. The board officers include: Susan Davidson (chair), Susanne Hambrusch (vice chair), Ron Brachman (treasurer), and Greg Morrisett (secretary).
Since I started graduate school in 1997, I have considered myself a member of the programming languages research community — and I continue to attend and publish in the annual conferences of this vibrant computing subfield. But over the last 5-10 years, I have also found myself increasingly passionate about opportunities for computing researchers to focus on ways to influence computing education beyond, for those of us who are academics, our own classrooms and independent studies. Let me share some of the projects I have enjoyed (seriously!) and others I wish I had more time to pursue.
My research revolves around tracking and understanding users’ emotional states and leveraging that information as additional context for the design of emotionally sentient systems. Some of the systems we have built have been designed for a user’s own personal reflection. Our first application, AffectAura, provided users with their own behavior patterns over time, such as what they were doing, where they were, who they were with and how they felt. This information could be used to make personal decisions about behavior change—if certain activities usually result in your feeling good or bad, perhaps you want to increase or decrease those behaviors.
My research involves understanding and facilitating the life cycle of cognitive software, which is substantially different than the life cycle of conventional software. This difference has profound implications for the methodology and tools required to build such software. Cognitive software possesses at least one “cognitive” or “intelligent” component, such as a component implemented using machine learning, neural networks, or rules. Multiple cognitive components will often be involved in a cognitive application or service, but even just one component is enough to impart special and challenging complications.
CRA brings together people from academia, government labs, and industrial labs. For me, coming from industry, Snowbird is an unbeatable opportunity to take the pulse of academia. One of the hot topics in 2016 was the Data Science juggernaut. I was glad to join Barbara Ryder (Chair) and Lise Getoor (Co-Chair) in organizing the panel session: Data Science in the 21st Century, which was well attended and full of energy and ideas. After CRA’s Committee on Data Science (Lise Getoor, Chair, David Culler, Eric de Sturler, David Ebert, Mike Franklin, and H.V. Jagadish) published the bulletin article Computing Research and the Emerging Field of Data Science, David Culler and I sat down for a follow-up chat: A Conversation on Data Science.
CRA Board Member Ellen Zegura was named one of the “10 Women in Networking/Communications That You Should Know” by Networking Networking Women (N2 Women), a discipline-specific community of researchers in the communications and networking research fields. Zegura is a faculty member at Georgia Tech and also a member of the CRA executive committee.
2017 Election Committee’s Slate of Nominees for the CRA Board
CRA is pleased to announce the 2017 Election Committee’s slate of nominees for the CRA Board.
The University at Buffalo (UB) Department of Computer Science and Engineering is celebrating its 50th anniversary this academic year. It has chosen this occasion to honor successful women in computing with a year-long speaker series. The Distinguished Speaker Series highlights several CRA board members.