Archive of articles published in the 2019 issue.

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Re-envisioning Computing in Undergraduate Education

Colleges and universities across the country are experiencing a significant influx of students in their undergraduate computer science (CS) courses. Many of these students are seeking the “traditional,” CS-centric undergraduate degrees that have evolved over decades, along with changes in our field. But many other students are quite different from the students whom we have found in our undergraduate majors. While they are interested in computing, they are more interested in creatively applying sophisticated computational skills and methods to a range of disciplines from biology to linguistics to art. They understand that CS knowledge is critical to helping them succeed in nearly any job, that “every field is becoming an information field.”

Recap of the Manoa Mini-Symposium on Physics of Adaptive Computation

In early January, the Computing Community Consortium (CCC) hosted a visioning workshop on Thermodynamic Computing in Honolulu, Hawaii in order to establish a community of like-minded visionaries; craft a statement of research needs; and summarize the current state of understanding within this new area of computing.

Evolving Academia/Industry Relations in Computing Research: Interim Report Released by the CCC

The Computing Community Consortium’s (CCC) Industry Working Group has released their Evolving Academia/Industry Relations in Computing Research: Interim Report. In 2015, the CCC sponsored an industry round table that produced the report “The Future of Computing Research: Industry-Academic Collaborations”. Since then, several important trends in computing research have emerged such as the dramatic increase in undergraduate computer science enrollment, the increased availability of information technology, and the rising level of interactions between professors and companies, which has led to the sharing of critical industry resources (such as cloud computing and data). This report considers how these trends impact the interaction between academia and industry in computing fields.

Expanding the Pipeline: CERP Data Buddies Survey Finishes Strong with More Insights About Students’ Experiences

The CRA Center for Evaluating the Research Pipeline concluded its fall 2018 Data Buddies Survey. The survey was modified to provide additional insight on student experiences in computing degree programs. These new data will be used in annual reporting and program evaluation.

Ran Libeskind-HadasRan Libeskind-Hadas

Board Member Highlight: CRA Board Member Ran Libeskind-Hadas

My research explores algorithmic methods for determining whether a pair of species are likely to have coevolved and, if so, finding the “best” scenarios that explain their evolutionary histories. This work explores the computational complexity of these reconciliation problems, seeks to develop efficient reconciliation algorithms where possible, and, ultimately, to implement these algorithms in practical tools for biologists and educators.

The computational complexity of these reconciliation problems depends on the particular biological events that we seek to model. We’ve shown that in some models the reconciliation problem is not only NP-hard but it’s even difficult to find an approximately optimal solution. In other cases, the reconciliation problem can be solved by efficient polynomial time algorithms.