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Volume 4, Issue 1, January 26, 2017
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UCLA Institute for Digital Research and Education
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Model: Impossible – How the Marian Group Visualizes the Unknown



Imagine stepping into your lab to find that you have captured your very own star on which to conduct research. It's a nice thought, but housing what amounts to an exploding ball of gas that can reach 100,000 degrees Fahrenheit isn't what most scientists would call practical.

Enter Jaime Marian, a professor in UCLA's School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and a member of the Institute of Digital Research and Education's Executive Committee.
 Read more here.

News & Publications

Volunteer for First Fridays


Dear BruinTechs,

The first First Fridays of 2017 is coming up next Friday, February 3rd from 10:00-12:00 pm in YRL Research Commons (first floor of the library). We have many retirees signed up, so please send an email to spietkiewicz@oit.ucla.edu if you are available to volunteer.

First Fridays is a program in which volunteers work one-on-one with retired UCLA staff and faculty to help them with technology. Retirees often need help using their smartphones, downloading an app from the app store, setting up email or navigating social media. If you own a smartphone and/or laptop, chances are you will be able to help answer their questions!

This is a great, easy opportunity to give back to the UCLA community! Please send an email if you are free to come help out. 

IDRE-related Lectures, Seminars & Colloquia

Big Data and Information Policies for Behavior Change

Wednesday, February 8
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
5628 Math Science -- The Portal

Abstract: 

Mobile apps and smart metering technologies can provide a wealth of data and information to guide real-time decisions about consumption or investment. However, we often have limited understanding of how information provided with these technologies can be framed to meet social or policy objectives. In this talk, I will discuss experimental evidence on the effectiveness of information to drive conservation behavior in residential and commercial buildings. Emphasis will be placed on the framing of incentives, smart metering and approaches to accelerate the adoption of innovations through changes in behavior. Register here.

Speaker: Dr. Omar I. Asensio is a postdoctoral scholar at UCLA's Institute of the Environment & Sustainability and the Anderson School of Management Ziman Center. He uses field experiments and quantitative methods to address innovation challenges related to energy, transportation and urban sustainability. His forthcoming research on energy efficiency strategies in commercial buildings will be featured in Science – Editor's choice section. He holds a doctorate in environmental science and engineering from UCLA and is a former National Science Foundation IGERT fellow with a topic in clean energy for green industry. 

Data as Infrastructure: CDS, Astronomy and Beyond

Wednesday, February 15
11:45 am - 1:00 pm
5628 Math Science -- The Portal

Abstract:

Science data sharing is currently high in the political agenda, but some disciplines began to share their data long ago. Astronomy has been at the forefront, and now data is one of the discipline research infrastructures widely used by astronomers in their daily research work. The pioneering work of Strasbourg astronomical data centre CDS, which was founded in 1972, will be described, as well as the astronomical data network and its global interoperability layer, the Virtual Observatory. Many other disciplines are establishing structures to share their data, which vary considerably by their culture and history. A few French examples (humanities, earth sciences) will be described. Finally, the way the Research Data Alliance (RDA) tackles the general question of enabling research data sharing will be briefly discussed. Register here.

Speaker: Françoise Genova was the director of the Strasbourg astronomical data centre CDS from 1995 to 2015, and one of the founding parents of the astronomical Virtual Observatory project. She has coordinated several projects dealing with the European Virtual Observatory. She currently leads the "Data Access, Discovery and Interoperability" Work Package of the European ASTERICS astronomy Cluster, which aims to optimize the usage of data from large astronomical projects through the Virtual Observatory. She was a member of the High Level Expert Group on Scientific Data of the European Commission, which wrote the "Riding the wave" report (2010) and the subsequent "Data Harvest" report. She is co-chair of the RDA Technical Advisory Board, and an active member to several RDA Europe projects. She is a current member of the Data Seal of Approval Board, and a past member of the WDS Scientific Committee (2009-2015) and of CODATA Executive Committee (2010-2012). 

IDRE-related Workshops & Events

Big Data Meets Computation 

Monday, January 30 through Friday, February 3
Institute for Pure & Applied Mathematics (IPAM)
460 Portola Plaza 

In High Performance Computing (HPC), one of the key challenges toward exascale computing is to overcome the communication bottleneck. Data motion tends to clearly limit the overall performance and determine the (enormous) energy consumption of future supercomputers; some even say "flops are for free." There, it is crucial to develop novel ways of efficiently representing, reducing, reconstructing, and transferring huge amounts of data. At the same time, the analysis of large sets of (simulation) data requires sophisticated data analytics, which, in return, turns more and more compute-intense itself, and, thus, becomes a major customer for HPC. Hence, computing technology and Big Data technology are intrinsically linked, and the latest insights, methods, and algorithms have to be considered jointly within that context. The fusion of HPC and Big Data is a young field with an endless number of application and huge potential. The present workshop aims at being a catalyst at this frontier and bringing together leading innovators and pioneers from applied mathematics, computer science, and various applications areas.

This workshop will include a poster session; a request for posters will be sent to registered participants in advance of the workshop. Register here.

Multiple Imputation in SAS 9.4

Tuesday, January 31
9:00 am - 12:00 pm
5628 Math Science -- The Portal

The purpose of this workshop is to discuss commonly used techniques for handling missing data and common issues that could arise when these techniques are used. In particular, this workshop will focus on one of the most commonly used modern methods, multiple imputation. The workshop will cover multiple imputation using the multivariate normal and imputation by chained equations as well as imputation diagnostics. Register here.  

Applied Survey Data Analysis with Stata

Tuesday, February 7
9:00 am - 12:00 pm
5628 Math Science -- The Portal 

This workshop will show how descriptive analyses, both numerical and graphical, can be done with continuous and categorical variables. Subpopulation analysis will be discussed, and then examples of OLS regression and logistic regression will be considered. Register here

Emerging Wireless Networks

Monday, February 6 through Friday, February 10
Institute for Pure & Applied Mathematics (IPAM)
460 Portola Plaza 

There is a strong need for more efficient bandwidth use and higher mobile speeds today given that the global mobile traffic is projected to increased nearly 11-fold between 2013 and 2018. The number of wireless devices has already reached 7 billion, while smart devices that have high computing resources and network connection capabilities increasingly dominate the market. This number is set to increae by an order of magnitude as we enter into the age of Internet-of-things (loT), where smart sensing and machine-to-machine communication is envisaged to explode in the coming decade (with applications to smart health, smart enviornments, etc.). All this points to fundamental new challenges which will require insights from mathematics, information theory, computer science as well as economics to resolve.

In order to address these challenges, over the next 5 years, there will be a new wireless standard developed ("5G") which has a target of orders-of-magnitude increase in system capacity. In order to enable this, as well as to deal with the envisaged proliferation of loT devices, current technologies will be insufficient, and fundamental new ideas need to be developed. This workshop will explore fundamental new ideas in wireless networks and its connections to mathematics. There are several workshops and conferences devoted to wireless systems and implementations, but there are none as far as we know that will connect traditionally disparate areas such as wireless network information theory, applied mathematics, economics and computer science.

The workshop will bring together researchers working on several fundamental aspects which could have an important impact in future wireless networks. The mathematical tools that will be involved include information theoretic and entropy inequalities, coding theory, probabilistic analysis including analysis of (randomized) algorithms, convex optimization, stochastic geometry, random matrices, etc.

This workshop will include a poster session; a request for posters will be sent to registered participants in advance of the workshop. Register here

Using Hoffman 2 Cluster

Thursday, February 9
10:00 am - 12:00 pm
5628 Math Science -- The Portal

This session is a general introduction to how to use UCLA Hoffman2 Cluster. The objective is to familiarize current and potential cluster users with the Hoffman2 Cluster, so they can make the best use of UCLA computational resources. The following topics will be covered:

1. How to access and login to the Hoffman2 Cluster, primarily in terminal/command-line mode.
2. Exploration of how to run various computational tasks on or from the Hoffman2 Cluster, illustrated by hands-on example transcripts.
3. A brief introduction to Univa Grid Engine (UGE) commands and how to acheive more control over resources.

The session is appropriate for entry-level and mid-level cluster users. No prerequisite knowledge is required, but some working experience with basic Unix system commands and Fortran or C programming languages will be helpful. The registrants are recommended to do a quick survey in the following link before the class: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/5KW8LQ2. Register here.

Python for High Performance Computing I

Friday, February 10
10:00 am - 12:00 pm 
5628 Math Science --The Portal 

Python, originally developed as a general purpose programming language, has gained its popularity in the scientific community in recent years owning to its elegant and easy-to-understand syntax and powerful libraries. Python fully supports both functional and object-oriented programming styles. This class will present a number of useful features of Python in the context of scientific computing, and introduce a number of supporting packages, including numpy for array-based computations and h5py to access HDF5 files, and the use of Python in parallel computing (MPI style).

This is part 1 of a 2-part presentation. Register here.

Introduction to Regression with SPSS

Tuesday, February 14
9:00 am - 12:00 pm 
5628 Math Science -- The Portal 

This workshop will introduce some fundamental topics in regression analysis using SPSS in three parts. The first part will begin with a brief overview of the SPSS environment, as well as simple data exploration techniques to ensure accurate analysis using simple and multiple regression. The second part will introduce regression diagnostics such as checking for normality of residuals, unusual and influential data, homoscedasticity and multicollinearity. The third part of this workshop will introduce categorical variables. Special attention will be given to interpreting a two-way categorical interaction with dummy variables and multiple-category predictors. Register here

Python for High Performance Computing II

Friday, February 17
10:00 am - 12:00 pm 
5628 Math Science -- The Portal

Python, originally developed as a general purpose programming language, has gained its popularity in the scientific community in recent years owning to its elegant and easy-to-understand syntax and powerful libraries. Python fully supports both functional and object-oriented programming styles. This class will present a number of useful features of Python in the context of scientific computing, and introduce a number of supporting packages, including numpy for array-based computations and h5py to access HDF5 files, and the use of Python in parallel computing (MPI style).

This is part 2 of a 2-part presentation. Register here.

Introduction to R

Tuesday, February 28
9:00 am - 12:00 pm 
5628 Math Science -- The Portal 

R is a powerful statistical package that runs on many platforms, including Windows, Macintosh and Unix. This class is designed for people who are just getting started using R. The students in the class will have a hands-on experience using R for statistics, graphics, and data management. The R class notes do not contain any of the computer output. The class notes are not meant to be an R textbook or a reference manual. However, it is possible for individuals to use the class notes to help in learning R even if they don't enroll in the workshop. Register here

IDRE Stat Consulting Group


The goal of the UCLA IDRE Statistical Consulting Group is to help UCLA faculty, staff, and graduate students perform top-notch research, with the greatest emphasis on data analysis related to grants and publications, but also including dissertation research. We provide advice and resources to enable you to develop and/or extend your statistical computing skills, helping you to independently use common statistical packages for the analysis of your research. Current hours for walk-in consulting are Monday-Thursday 12-3 PM. 

Walk-in consulting is in Math Sciences 4919. See our online schedule for days and hours.

Grant & Funding Opportunities

UCLA Office of Information Technology
Institute for Digital Research and Education
310-825-6635 | frontdesk@oit.ucla.edu
https://idre.ucla.edu/
5308 Math Sciences
Box 951557, Mail Code 155705
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1557

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