Published: April 2014,  Issue: Vol. 26/No.4, Download as PDF

Archive of articles published in the April 2014, Vol. 26/No.4 issue.

2014 CRA Board Election Results

CRA members have elected four new members to its Board of Directors – Nancy Amato, Dan Grossman, Susanne Hambrusch and Barbara Ryder. They will begin three-year terms on July 1, 2014. Five current board members – Mary Czerwinski (Microsoft Research), Susan Davidson (University of Pennsylvania), Brent Hailpern (IBM Research), James Kurose (University of Massachusetts) and Ellen Zegura (Georgia Tech) were re-elected to the CRA Board for the July 1, 2014, through June 30, 2017 term. Julia Hirschberg and P. Takis Metaxasis are retiring from the board as of June 30, 2014. CRA thanks them for contributions during their service on the board.

Visions 2025: Interacting with the Computers All Around Us

The Visions 2025 initiative is intended to inspire the computing community to envision future trends and opportunities in computing research. Where is the computing field going over the next 10-15 years? What are potential opportunities, disruptive trends, and blind spots? Are there new questions and directions that deserve greater attention by the research community and new investments in computing research?

CCC Workshop Report: Multidisciplinary Research for Online Education

The following is a special contribution to this blog from Douglas H. Fisher, Director of the Vanderbilt Institute for Digital Learning, and Associate Professor of Computer Science and Computer Engineering at Vanderbilt University. Doug and Armando Fox of U.C. Berkeley co-chaired the Workshop on Multidisciplinary Research for Online Education last year, and recently completed the report of that workshop.


1st CRA-W/CDC Broadening Participation in Visualization (BPViz) Workshop

On February 10-11, 2014, Clemson University catapulted to the forefront of efforts to broaden participation in discipline specific domains. Clemson Computing and Information Technology Department hosted the 1st CRA-W/CDC Broadening Participation in Visualization Workshop ( The workshop was held at Clemson University in Clemson, South Carolina. This herculean effort of organizing and planning was met with lofty goals, and logistical intricacies that culminated in success, despite the rare hiccup by Mother Nature affectionately known as the polar vortex.

University-Industry Partnership to Advance Machine Learning

Through an innovative new partnership, Yahoo Labs and Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) are working together to break new ground in the area of machine learning. This transformational research will bring academic and industry researchers together, with the goal of developing new technologies that meet common goals. The exciting new collaboration is called Project InMind. Academic researchers at CMU will be able to iterate on work directly with Yahoo software, testing on opt-in users from the CMU community and making use of Yahoo’s infrastructure, with the goals of increasing the pace of mobile and personalization research and creating a better user experience. The project will be overseen at Yahoo by Ron Brachman, chief scientist and head of Yahoo Labs, and at CMU by Tom Mitchell, head of the CMU Machine Learning Department and Justine Cassell, associate vice provost of technology strategy and impact.

Postdoc Experiences

Applicants who applied to the Computing Innovation (CI) Fellowship Program in 2009, 2010, or 2011 were recruited during the fall of 2013 to complete CERP’s survey of postdoc experiences. We asked a sample of CI Fellows (n = 66) and non-fellows who had other postdoc experiences (i.e., Non-fellow Postdocs; n = 117) to reflect on their career aspirations upon completing their PhD and their career aspirations upon completing their postdoc. Both groups reported the same level of interest in pursuing a tenure track academic career upon PhD completion. Among those who had aspired to a tenure track position at upon completing their PhD, CI Fellows reported greater aspirations for being a tenure track academic after completing their postdoc relative to Non-fellow Postdocs, p < .05. These findings suggest that the CI Fellows postdoc program helped individuals maintain interest in a tenure track academic career.

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Highlights of the CISE Fiscal Year 2015 Budget Request

On March 4, President Obama delivered his Fiscal Year (FY) 2015 Budget Request to Congress, and the President’s FY 2015 Budget Request for NSF was presented on March 11. At $7.3 billion, this Request supports investments in fundamental research across all scientific disciplines, engineering, and education that continue to enhance our national economy, security, and quality of life. This represents an increase of $83 million, or about 1.2 percent, over the FY 2014 NSF Estimate.

Time to Degree in Computing

How long does it take to finish a Ph.D. in computing? This is important information for departmental planning and for students considering the commitment involved in a Ph.D. program, but it is not readily available. This article addresses five questions…

Postdoc Best Practices Award Recipients Announced

The Computing Community Consortium and the National Science Foundation are very excited to announce the recipients of awards for the Postdoc Best Practices program. In September, an RFP was released by the CCC to create programs to develop, implement, and institutionalize the implementation of best practices for supporting postdocs in the computer science and engineering field.