Dr. Johnson is the director of UMBC’s Center for Advanced Studies in Photonics Research. His research is in the area of ultrafast optics and optoelectronics- the ultrafast photophysics and nonlinear optical properties of bulk, nanoclustered, and quantum well semiconductor structures, untrashort pulse propagation in fibers and high-speed lightwave systems.
Dr. Forno was also interviewed on Tuesday on the PRI's The World radio news show about the Mandiant report that traces a wave of cyber attacks on American targets to a Chinese military unit in Shanghai. Forno's interview segment starts at minute 7:30, after the introduction.
"I owe you a beer" is a phrase that's thrown around a lot with very little follow through.
UMBC Alumnus Sean Kennedy (Information Systems '06) created a smartphone application that could change that. BeerGivr allows you to virtualy send your buddy a brew. When a friend wants to buy you a drink but can't make it to the bar, he can send a text message with a code that's currency in some local bars. As of now twenty bars participate in the BeerGivr project, among them Alewife, No Idea Tavern, and Bond Street Social.
It's called "Components of a 21st Century Classroom" and it looks at how technology, like computers, tablets, and other mobile devices, are being increasingly incorporated into the classroom.
With number like "1 in 5 students have used a mobile app to keep their coursework organized" and "Almost a third of all college students take at least one online course", it appears that the trend toward supplementing teaching with tech devices, social media, and computer programs will only gain steam as time goes on.
What do you think about the role of technology in the classroom? Are mobile devices a distraction, or an asset? What type of technology is used most in your classes?
That's Todd Marks up there, standing over a banner for Mindgrub Technologies. In 2002, Marks founded the Catonsville-based start-up that specializes in mobile and web development. In fact, you're probably a fan of their work if you've downloaded UMBC's free iPhone application.
According to a Patch.com article, Mindgrub has already outgrown its office space on Frederick Road, which houses the company's 36 full-time employees. The company, which started in Marks' basement, is growing faster than anticipated. Its growth is likely tied to a string of recent successes. Like, at this year's Biz Buzz Awards–sponsored by the Baltimore Business Journal–Mind grub took home first place in the App Creator Category. And, at this year's ADDY Awards, they earned a Gold Addy for their iPhone game TAG: The Mobile Assassination Game.
The Retriever Weekly talked to UMBC alumnus Delali Dzirasa (CE, '04) about what it takes to be a successful entrepreneur. Dzirasa, the founder of Fearless Solutions, LLC–a team of software engineers and web developers that help clients solve problems through Data Visualization, Web Application Development, Software Engineering, and Rapid Prototyping–knows from experience. Here's what he had to say:
" Dzirasa of Fearless Solutions told stories of how he used to run a barbershop when he lived on the UMBC campus to make money.
"I am a serial starter of things," he said. "My advice for you is to believe in yourself… Never give up and hold onto your vision." "
An article in the April 1 edition of New York Times, Computer Science for the Rest of Us, mentions UMBC and Marie desJardins. It describes the idea that our notion of literacy should be exapanded to include an understanding of computational processes and that all college graduates should know the basics of computational thinking.
The article discusses a number of colleges and universities that have introduced new courses to address this challenge, offering non-computing majors a chance to understand how computation can be used to analyze and organizing data, model ideas and systems, evaluate theories and simulate processes in the real world. Often this can be done without trying to train students to use conventional general purpose programming languages like Python or Java.
Professor desJardins was mentioned for her work at UMBC on revamping CMSC 100 to be just such a course.
"Marie desJardins, a computer science professor at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, says her department uses Scratch in its 'Introduction to Computers and Programming' course, in which students can try a few basic concepts. About 25 percent of the semester is spent on programming.
Explaining why Scratch is used at the college level, she says that all students arrive on campus having taken high school classes in English, math, biology and so on, but that many have not taken a computer science class."
The buzz about driverless cars erupted after Google received a patent for the technology in December of last year. Since then, the project has been steadily moving forward. A few days ago, Google started testing their vehicles on Nevada roads, following approval by the state’s Legislative Commission. With the inevitability of autonomous transportation creeping closer, measures to ensure its realization are being pursued by more companies than just Google.
Peter Stone, a professor of computer science at the University of Texas at Austin, and his team are working on developing a “smart” intersection that would manage the flow of driverless cars, reports techworld.com.
According to Stone’s project, intersections would be equipped with a manager that would coordinate traffic in an efficient and mathematical way. Techworld reports:
‘"When a car gets close to the intersection, it calls ahead and says, 'I want to go through the intersection.' The intersection manager says either yes or no. It keeps track of the reservations it grants and makes sure it doesn't give permission to other cars that would conflict with them," Stone said.’