Mathematics professor forecasts college campus
reopenings and demystifies epidemic modeling
The COVID-19 virus first tore through the United States more than five months ago, and scientists across the nation are rushing to forecast case and death rates as communities and businesses reopen.
Professor Andrea Bertozzi, an IDRE Executive Board member, is lending her mathematical modeling expertise to the fight against coronavirus.
Bertozzi and her fellow UCLA mathematics professor, Mason Porter, are modeling the virus’s spread in particular networks, such as universities and care facilities.
Is it safe to reopen a bustling college campus in the midst of coronavirus?
There are varying opinions. Some universities plan to continue all online courses, others-- UCLA included-- will opt for an in-person and online hybrid, and recent case spikes have spurred a few to reverse their fall 2020 decisions. Less than a week after announcing their initial in-person reopening plans, the University of Southern California asked Trojans to stay home and continue remote learning.
As a way to see inside the body, revealing a tumor or a fetus, ultrasound is tried and true. But neuroscientists have a newer ambition for the technology: tinkering with the brain. If researchers can prove that ultrasound safely and predictably changes human brain function, it could become a powerful, noninvasive research tool and a new means of treating brain disorders.
“I’ve seen a lot of tantalizing data,” says Mark Cohen, IDRE Executive Committee member. “While the challenges are very large, the potential of this thing is so much larger that we really have to pursue it.”
UCLA to help launch new NSF quantum computing institute
The National Science Foundation (NSF) awarded $25 million to UCLA, UC Berkeley, and other universities to create the NSF Quantum Leap Challenge Institute for Present and Future Quantum Computation.
The institute's goal is to achieve quantum computing and design advanced, large-scale quantum computers that employ state-of-science algorithms developed by the researchers, including IDRE Executive Committee member Jens Palsberg.
UCLA Newsroom spoke with Miriam Posner, HASIS Committee member, in a recent Q&A with on the modern museums' current issues and it's potential for social equity in their environments. In this session, she highlights some issues that they have to overcome.
"There are questions of what kinds of things should be digitized and be made freely available online and what kinds of things should not be circulated like that," Posner said.
"For example, indigenous artifacts often have cultural restrictions attached to them. If a museum is reckless about what it is digitizing and making available, it could really harm some people. And then there are some works of art that really bear some thinking about how freely we want the images to circulate without context."
Jens Palsberg to chair in largest global computing society
IDRE Executive Committee member, Jens Palsberg, was elected chair for the Association for Computing Machinery’s (ACM) executive committee for the special interest group (SIG) governing board for a two-year term. He will oversee the 37 ACM’s SIG activities, which includes 200 annual conferences, awards and volunteer opportunities.
ACM is the world’s largest scientific and educational computing nonprofit society which aims to advance computing as a science & profession. With nearly 100,000 members, they also have access to ACM Digital Library, the most comprehensive database of literature on computing and information technology.