Wednesday, April 30, 2014

If you aren't getting rejected on a daily basis, your goals aren't ambitious enough

Imagine being able to try on clothes from around the world virtually via your webcam. That's the experience offered by Clothia, a website and iPad app designed by Elena Silenok, who earned her master's in computer science here at the Jacobs School back in 2006.
Silenok gave a tech talk about start-ups about the different options available to CS students after graduation April 24. The event was hosted by the Women in Computing group here at UC San Diego. Some of Silenok's advice:
"If you aren't getting rejected on a daily basis, your goals aren't ambitious enough."
 Silenok is now a guest lecturer at Columbia University and NYU, among others, as well as a contributing writer to Business Insider.
Clothia also allows users to browse their friends' closets, mix-n-match items to create outfits, get inspired by style icons and share their finds. She described her inspiration for the company in a 2012 story in The New York Times:

“I was like, ‘Oh, my God, my pink thing is not working,’ ” said Ms. Silenok, who was born in Kaliningrad, Russia, to a family of engineers and has a master’s in computer science from the University of California, San Diego. She decided to build a new wardrobe and wanted input from her friends. But e-mailing and instant messaging photos while slogging around stores was a chore. And she wanted to call up mental images of her entire closet at all times. “As a girl, you don’t think of just an item you buy,” Ms. Silenok said. “You think of an outfit.” She cited as inspiration the computer touch-screen that Cher Horowitz pressed to mix and match the contents of her closet in the 1995 film “Clueless.”
“That scene was only 17 seconds,” Ms. Silenok said. (She timed it.) “And people still remember the clothes closet. Women everywhere always wondered, Why don’t we have something like this?”

Friday, April 25, 2014

How engineers spend their weekends -- sometimes

It wouldn't be UC San Diego if you couldn't sneak out to the beach between classes and on the weekend. And that's exactly what the campus' chapter of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers did this month. Justin Opatkiewcz, a teaching professor in the Department of NanoEngineering, which now includes chemical engineering majors, joined in the fun. Pictures below (courtesy of AIChE)!

MiP goes to Los Angeles

LA-area UC San Diego alumni will get an exclusive look at MiP, the toy robot designed by toymaker WowWee and the UCSD Coordinate Robotics lab during an Inspiring Minds event May 13 at the Luxe Sunset Boulevard Hotel.
Tom Bewley, a professor in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, who heads the coordinated robotics lab, will be the featured speaker.
Below is his ambitious agenda:

What are the simplest robotic designs for overcoming various obstacles? How can advanced algorithms for coordinating robotic sensor vehicles help us better respond to environmental hazards?

Where did the radiation from Fukushima, the oil from Deepwater Horizon, and the ash from Eyjafjallajökull go? Where will a category 5 hurricane developing over the Gulf of Mexico make landfall? Robotic sensor vehicles, advanced control algorithms, and high-performance computing will help us to quickly and accurately answer such questions in the future; recent major advancements of such coordination algorithms will also be discussed.

How do you inspire K-12 students to take an interest in STEM? Make it fun! Attendees will also have a chance to meet MiP, the first of an engaging new line of consumer toys and educational curricula, developed in collaboration with WowWee Robotics, designed to do exactly that.
 More info about the event here.

More info on MiP here and here.

These two Global TIES teams are finalists in the Social Innovation Challenge at the University of San Diego

Congratulations to the two Global TIES team that are finalists in the University of San Diego's citywide Social Innovation Challenge.
The Fiji Kindergarten team is designing a kindergarten campus from salvaged shipping containers in partnership with the Loloma Foundation in Fiji.
The One Village Philippines team is designing sustainable technologies, including solar-powered lamps, in partnership with Gawad Kalinga, a nonprofit in the Philippines.
The competition is funded by the Moxie Foundation and the winning teams are eligible to take home a $17,500 prize.
Check out the videos describing the team's projects.
The One Village Philippines team:
The Fiji Kindergarten team:

Thursday, April 17, 2014

This was the fun at Bioengineering Day 2014

Renowned neuroscientist Terry Sejnowski delivered the keynote address at this year's Bioengineering Day, on the morning of Saturday, April 12, at the Sanford Consortium for Regenerative Medicine.
He was followed by a distinguished roster of speakers in the afternoon, including Dr. Doris Taylor, the director of regenerative medicine research at the Texas Heart Institute, Dr. Gerardo Toledo, senior director of microbial discovery at Synthetic Genomics and Kabir Kasargod, director of business development at Qualcomm life.
Graduate and undergraduate students also presented posters on a wide variety of topics, including traction forces that regulate early fate decisions in embryonic stem cells;  smart matrices as dynamic scaffolds for stem cell differentiation; and designer gene circuits for basic science, engineering and medicines, among many, many others.
The day's events also included a networking reception, a quiz bowl and awards.
More pictures of the fun below.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Updated May 5: Fun pictures from the 2014 Breakfast with the Dean on Triton Day

Update: It has been brought to our attention that this item actually includes pictures from three different events:  the overnight stay program dinner, sponsored by the IDEA Student Center; a Jacobs Scholars reception, also hosted by the IDEA Center; and the Breakfast with the Deans (though apparently one of the pictures is from 2013). We regret the error.

Admitted students got a chance to mingle with current students, faculty and staff members during the Jacobs School's annual Breakfast with the Dean on Triton Day. The event is hosted by the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers, the National Society of Black Engineers and the Society of Women Engineers. Below are some pictures of the fun. We spotted professors Tara Javidi, Andrew Kang, Darren Lipomi and Rick Ord, among others.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

At Research Expo, See Where Engineering and Medicine Meet

Thanks to the UC San Diego Institute of Engineering in Medicine and other collaborative initiative on campus, engineers from the Jacobs School of Engineering work side-by-side with UC San Diego physicians and affiliated researchers to identify patient needs and to develop devices and therapies that can be translated into clinical care. 

At Research Expo 2014 on the afternoon of April 17, you’ll have access to the researchers behind many projects at the intersection of health care and engineering, including the following:

* Merging big data and wireless sensing to make patient monitoring less invasive and safer

* Glasses-free 3D surgery applications (and related faculty talk)

* Nanoparticles that can remove toxins from the bloodstream or deliver drugs straight to tumors without damaging healthy tissue. 

Find out more by searching the poster titles here. When you register, you get access to abstracts. 

Research Expo is also about recruiting. If you are looking hire top engineers with advanced degrees or want access to 200 cutting-edge engineering research projects, we invite you to our 33rd annual Research Expo on Thursday, April 17 from 2:00-6:00 p.m.
Register Today
UC San Diego Alumni enjoy half-price admission.
Corporate Affiliates Program member companies receive 2-for-1 admission.