Crush, the RoboSub, Places in International Competition


The Caltech Robotics Team placed fourth in the 18th Annual International RoboSub Competition. The Competition is designed to introduce students to high-tech STEM fields such as maritime robotics. This year's team from Caltech was led by mechanical engineering recent graduate Justin Koch who was advised by Professor Joel Burdick. [Caltech story]

Tags: honors MCE CMS alumni Joel Burdick Justin Koch

Best Computer Science & Engineering Schools in 2015


Caltech was ranked number two for the best computer science & engineering schools in 2015 by Business Insider readers. Over 400 readers were surveyed regarding which degrees they deem most valuable. Survey participants rated the schools on a scale from 1 (not valuable) to 5 (extremely valuable). Business Insider then took the percentage of people who assessed each school at a 4 or 5 and averaged that with the average SAT scores (from college admissions website CollegeBoard) to rank each school. [Learn more]

Tags: CMS

121st Commencement Ceremony


Caltech’s 121st commencement ceremony was held on Friday June 12, 2015. The commencement speaker was cultural anthropologist Genevieve Bell, an expert on the intersection of culture and technology. She reminded the graduates that it is the 50th anniversary of Moore’s Law which she referred to as a bold statement of engineering and a promise about the state of the future. She asked the graduates to not only bring their technical skills to the table, but also their humanity and obligation to make the work a better place. [View Dr. Bell’s commencement address]

Tags: Commencement Genevieve Bell

2015 Bhansali Prize Award Winners


Bryan He, a senior student advised by Yisong Yue, and William Hoza, a junior student advised by Leonard Schulman, are the recipients of the 2015 Bhansali Prize. Nicholas Schiefer, a junior student advised by Erik Winfree, won an honorable mention for the Prize. The Bhansali Prize is typically awarded to one undergraduate student for outstanding research in Computer Science in the current academic year, but due to the number of particularly high-caliber candidates in 2015, the Bhansali Prize committee determined that multiple students deserved the award.

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Tags: honors CMS Erik Winfree Yisong Yue Bryan He William Hoza Nicholas Schiefer Leonard Schulman

Winners of the 2015 Demetriades - Tsafka - Kokkalis Prizes Announced


The student winners of the 2015 Demetriades - Tsafka - Kokkalis Prizes were announced at a special luncheon with the Demetriades - Tsafka – Kokkalis family. Alborz Mahdavi received the prize in Biotechnology for his work with David Tirrell developed a set of important new tools for analyzing protein synthesis in complex biological systems. Srivatsan Hulikal was the recipient of the prize in Seismo-Engineering, Prediction, and Protection for his work with Nadia Lapusta on linking macroscopic frictional properties of interfaces to their micromechanics. Lingwen Gan working with Steven Low received the prize in Environmentally Benign Renewable Energy Sources for his work on sustainable power systems and specifically the control and optimization of distributed energy resources in future smart grids. The winner of the prize in Nanotechnology was Niranjan Srinivas  for designing and building a system of DNA machines that, in bulk, implement an oscillator. Niranjan's advisor was Eric Winfree.

Tags: EE honors MCE CMS Nadia Lapusta Steven Low Demetriades - Tsafka - Kokkalis Alborz Mahdavi David Tirrell Srivatsan Hulikal Lingwen Gan Niranjan Srinivas Eric Winfree

Professor Meiron Receives Excellence in Teaching Award


Dan Meiron, Fletcher Jones Professor of Aeronautics and Applied and Computational Mathematics, has received a 2014-2015 Associated Students of the California Institute of Technology (ASCIT) Teaching Award. [List of past recipients]

Tags: honors GALCIT CMS Dan Meiron

CMS Undergraduate Wins Intercollegiate Conference & Sets Record in 5K


Computing and Mathematical Sciences (CMS) undergraduate student, Aditya Bhagavathi, has claimed the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) title in the 5,000 meter run. Previous to that he set a new program record in outdoor 5,000 meter run clocking at 14:46.66 to beat out the last record by nearly six seconds. [SCIAC title] [5K record] [NCAA qualifier]

Tags: honors CMS Aditya Bhagavathi

Annual Celebration of Undergraduate Research


The Computing and Mathematical Sciences (CMS) Department hosted its second annual Celebration of Undergraduate Research on Friday, May 29th, 2015. Twenty students/teams participated by presenting their research via a poster and/or demo, and prizes were awarded to the top three teams, as voted by event attendees: First Place (Tie): Distributed Control of Networked DER Visualization, presented by Kalyn Chang, Monica Lee, Ker Lee Yap, and Frank Zhou, and Spoons, presented by Donsuk Lee and Joon Sik Kim; Second Place: Grapevine, presented by Taokun (Xander) Zheng, Aditya Bhagavathi, and Aman Agarwal.

In addition, the following students were recognized for their outstanding academic excellence and/or services to CMS: Joseph Choi, Xiangyi Huang, Chiraag Nataraj, and Ellen Price.

Many members of the CMS community attended to learn more about the research projects, and a large number of undergrads came to support and celebrate their classmates' hard work.

Tags: honors CMS

Professor Umans Named Simons Investigator in Computer Science


Christopher Umans, Professor of Computer Science, has been named a Simons Investigator in Computer Science by the Simons Foundation’s Mathematics and Physical Sciences Division. The award honors and supports "outstanding scientists in their most productive years, when they are establishing creative new research directions, providing leadership to the field and effectively mentoring junior scientists." Professor Umans’ research centers on algorithms and complexity. He has made contributions to the understanding of randomness in computation, and algorithms for fundamental algebraic problems which includes developing a group-theoretic approach for matrix multiplication. [List of awardees] [Caltech story]

Tags: honors research highlights CMS Christopher Umans

Taokun Zheng Receives 2015 Henry Ford II Scholar Award


Computing and Mathematical Sciences student Taokun (Xander) Zheng, mentored by Professors Alan Barr and Adam Wierman, is a recipient of the 2015 Henry Ford II Scholar Award. Xander is working on a network project utilizing photographic media. The Henry Ford II Scholar Award is funded under an endowment provided by the Ford Motor Company Fund. The award is made annually to the engineering student with the best academic record at the end of the third year of undergraduate study.

Tags: honors CMS Henry Ford II Scholar Award Adam Wierman Taokun Zheng Alan Barr