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From the College of Natural Sciences
Kristen Grauman Named Finalist in 2020 Blavatnik National Awards for Young Scientists

Kristen Grauman Named Finalist in 2020 Blavatnik National Awards for Young Scientists

University of Texas at Austin computer science researcher Kristen Grauman was selected as a finalist for the 2020 Blavatnik National Awards for Young Scientists.

Pangolin: An Efficient and Flexible Graph Pattern Mining System

Pangolin: An Efficient and Flexible Graph Pattern Mining System

The datasets used by many software applications can be represented as graphs, defined by sets of vertices and edges. These graphs are rich with useful information, and can be used to determine patterns and relationships among the stored data. This process of discovering relevant patterns from graphs is called Graph Pattern Mining. A team of Texas Computer Science (TXCS) researchers advised by Dr. Keshav Pingali has done groundbreaking work to make these programs more efficient and accessible. Their work was recently accepted to Very Large Databases (VLDB) 2020, one of the premier conferences in computer science.

New Online Master’s Degree in Data Science is a First for The University of Texas at Austin

New Online Master’s Degree in Data Science is a First for The University of Texas at Austin

In response to high demand for professionals with scientific and technical training to understand and work with massive amounts of data, The University of Texas at Austin is set to launch a new online master's degree program in data science. Pending final approval by UT System and the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board, the new program will ...
Researchers Design Evolutionary Algorithms for Neural Networks

Researchers Design Evolutionary Algorithms for Neural Networks

Texas Computer Science (TXCS) graduate students Garrett Bingham and William Macke, under the advisement of TXCS professor Risto Miikkulainen, are contributing to the improvement of AI with their research. Their paper, entitled "Evolutionary Optimization of Deep Learning Activation Functions" was accepted into the 2020 Genetic and Evolutionary Computation Conference. The work concerns the evolutionary optimization of activation functions as a potential means of improving neural networks, which may ultimately lead to the creation of smarter and more accurate AI.

New Partnership Aims to Demystify Artificial Intelligence “Black Boxes”

New Partnership Aims to Demystify Artificial Intelligence “Black Boxes”

Isil Dillig (left) and Swarat Chaudhuri are part of a new, multi-institution initiative aimed at better understanding what happens inside artificial intelligence "black boxes."

The promise of artificial intelligence to solve problems in drug design, discover how babies learn language, and make progress in many other areas has been stymied by the inability of humans to understand what's going on inside AI systems.

Joydeep Biswas Builds Robots to Navigate the Real World

Joydeep Biswas Builds Robots to Navigate the Real World

The Biswas lab demos robotic cars at campus events like the college donor brunch and Explore UT.

Joydeep Biswas leads the Autonomous Mobile Robotics Laboratory (AMRL) at UT, where he and other researchers work on building mobile service robots that assist humans in everyday environments. The lab investigates programs and algorithms that enable these robots to better navigate changing conditions, incorporate human assistance and recover from failures intelligently.

New Sandboxing Approach in Web Browser Increases Security

New Sandboxing Approach in Web Browser Increases Security

A powerful new approach to securing web browsers, using a tool called WebAssembly, is getting its first real-world application in the Firefox browser. Developed by a team of researchers from The University of Texas at Austin, the University of California San Diego, Stanford University and Mozilla, the approach shifts some of the browser code into "secure sandboxes" that prevent malicious code from taking over the user's computer.

Researchers Say Spread of Coronavirus Extends Far Beyond China’s Quarantine Zone

Researchers Say Spread of Coronavirus Extends Far Beyond China’s Quarantine Zone

Infectious disease researchers at The University of Texas at Austin and other institutions in Hong Kong, mainland China and France have concluded there is a high probability that the deadly Wuhan coronavirus spread beyond Wuhan and other quarantined cities before Chinese officials were able to put a quarantine in place. At least 128 cities in China outside of the quarantine zone, including cities with no reported cases to date, had a greater than even risk of exposure, according to a paper currently in press with Emerging Infectious Diseases, a journal of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Student Mindful of What We Owe to Education

Student Mindful of What We Owe to Education

Education is powerful — it's a means to inciting progress in the world, empowering individuals and transforming lives. Education's role in facilitating positive change is a major theme in Texas Computer Science student Dora Gurfinkel's life. She's so aware of it, in fact, that she is using her education to elicit real change within the university while paying homage to her family's unique history.

Computer Scientist Scott Aaronson Named as ACM Fellow

Computer Scientist Scott Aaronson Named as ACM Fellow

Scott Aaronson has been named as an Association for Computing Machinery Fellow.

Texas Computer Science professor Scott Aaronson has been named as a 2019 Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Fellow. ACM is the world's largest computing society and is dedicated to advancing the field. Each year, the organization honors members that have made a significant contribution to the field of computing and information technology.

Building Industry Bridges: Computer Scientist Tackles New Role for Sony, While Leading at UT

Building Industry Bridges: Computer Scientist Tackles New Role for Sony, While Leading at UT

Peter Stone has been tapped by Sony Corp. to head up the U.S. branch of its new global artificial intelligence research division, called Sony AI. Photo credit: University of Texas at Austin.

In a sign of the highly competitive environment for top talent in the field of artificial intelligence (AI), the Sony Corporation this week tapped Peter Stone, a faculty member in the College of Natural Sciences at The University of Texas at Austin, to lead the newly established Sony AI in the United States.

Natural Sciences Researchers Win President’s Award for Global Learning

Natural Sciences Researchers Win President’s Award for Global Learning

Two teams with College of Natural Sciences faculty members and students – and three additional teams with undergraduates from the college – were recently honored with the President’s Award for Global Learning, which aims to highlight innovative solutions to global problems and give interdisciplinary teams of faculty and students the opportunity to take those projects to international sites.

UT Austin Launches Institute to Harness the Data Revolution

UT Austin Launches Institute to Harness the Data Revolution

Research from UT Austin professors and TRIPODS members Alex Dimakis and Eric Price shows that it is possible to learn a deep generative model that dreams images of human faces (right panel), trained by observing only occluded images (left panel). The middle panel shows a previous approach for solving this problem, that fails. [Figure from: AmbientGAN: Generative models from lossy measurements, by A. Bora, E. Price and A.G. Dimakis, ICLR 2018.]

Advances in machine learning are announced every day, but efforts to fundamentally rethink the core algorithms of AI are rare.

How Do Computers Learn? Sometimes by Driving Cars and Spinning Tunes

How Do Computers Learn? Sometimes by Driving Cars and Spinning Tunes

​Members of The University of Texas at Austin's Learning Agents Research Group have been a resource for members of the media about how to teach artificial intelligence systems to learn.

Computer Scientist Weighs in on Quantum Supremacy

Computer Scientist Weighs in on Quantum Supremacy

Google’s quantum computer. Credit: Google

Google announced earlier this week that a team of researchers made a milestone achievement: "quantum supremacy," or the creation of a quantum computer capable of calculations beyond the capacity of a traditional supercomputer. To put this in perspective, a number of media outlets, including New York Times, Scientific American, Nature, Quanta Magazine, BBC and NPR, relied on the expertise of Scott Aaronson, a professor of computer science at the University of Texas at Austin.