All graduate seminars are held from 4:10 p.m. to 5:25 p.m. in room 124 HRBB unless otherwise noted below. Registering students for the seminar:  See the requirements to receive credit. Join us for this open seminar! 


Spring 2019

Houston, we have a narrative

Monday, Jan. 14

Ricardo Gutierrez-Osuna
Professor
Texas A&M University

Abstract
This talk describes the important role that storytelling plays in science communication. The talk is based on Randy Olson’s book entitled “Houston, we have a narrative: why science needs story.” The talk will describe the basic structure of research articles and how that structure relates to narrative, going back to classical Greece and mythology. The talk will also present three simple techniques, the Word, Sentence and Paragraph templates, that can be used to inject a narrative component into science writing.

Biography
Ricardo Gutierrez-Osuna received a B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering from the Polytechnic University of Madrid (Spain) in 1992, and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Computer Engineering from North Carolina State University in 1995 and 1998, respectively. He is currently a Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at Texas A&M University. He has broad research interests in speech processing, machine learning, and models of human perception.

Faculty Contact: Ricardo Gutierrez-Osuna


How to Write a Systems Paper

Wednesday, Jan. 23

Dilma Da Silva
Department Head of Computer Science and Engineering
Professor
Holder of the Ford Motor Company Design Professorship II
Texas A&M University

Abstract
The effective dissemination of research results is a critical part of a successful career as a scholar and innovator. Graduate school provides a fantastic opportunity to develop and refine the skills that support the writing and reading of technical communication. Within the different disciplines of computer science and computer engineering, there are common approaches to composing well-written papers. This talk suggests practices that students can adopt to evolve their writing continuously. It highlights the aspects that are particularly important in research areas where novel ideas may be demonstrated through the prototyping of experimental software/hardware frameworks, runtimes, or testbeds. Such a system-centric approach is common in disciplines such as operating systems, computer architecture, distributed systems, networking, parallel computing, security, real-time systems, embedded systems, programming language, and many others.

Biography
Dilma Da Silva is a Professor and the Department Head for Computer Science and Engineering at Texas A&M University. Her primary research interests are cloud computing, operating systems, high-end computing, and computer science education. Before joining Texas A&M, she worked at Qualcomm Research (2012-2014), IBM Research (2000-2012) and the University of Sao Paulo (1996-2000).

Dilma is an ACM Distinguished Scientist, a member of the board of CRA-W (Computer Research Association's Committee on the Status of Women in Computing Research) and a co-founder of the Latinas in Computing group. She served as an officer at ACM SIGOPS from 2011 to 2015 and chaired the ACM Senior Award Committee in 2015. She is an Associate Editor for several journals and is on the steering committee of many conferences. She has chaired more than 30 conferences/workshops and participated in more than 100 program committees. She has published more than 80 technical papers and filed 15 patents.

Dilma received a Ph.D. from Georgia Tech in 1997.

Faculty Contact: Ricardo Gutierrez-Osuna


Writing Science

Monday, Jan. 28

Ricardo Gutierrez-Osuna
Professor
Texas A&M University

Abstract
This talk describes the basic structure of a scientific paper. The talk is based on Prof. Joshua Schimel’s book entitled “Writing science, how to write papers that get cited and proposals that get funded.” We will describe four core story structures (OCAR, ABDCE, LDR, and LR) and when to use them in storytelling. We will then focus on how to map the OCAR (Opening, Challenge, Action, and Resolution) structure, with its hourglass shape, into the traditional sections of a research article: Introduction, Methods, Results and Discussion. We will also discuss the basic structure of paragraphs and sentences, and how to use them effectively to improve flow.

Biography
Ricardo Gutierrez-Osuna received a B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering from the Polytechnic University of Madrid (Spain) in 1992, and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Computer Engineering from North Carolina State University in 1995 and 1998, respectively. He is currently a Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at Texas A&M University. He has broad research interests in speech processing, machine learning, and models of human perception.

Faculty Contact: Ricardo Gutierrez-Osuna


Prediction and Entropy of Printed English

Wednesday, Jan. 30

Anxiao (Andrew) Jiang
Associate Professor
Texas A&M University

Abstract
We speak a language every day. But how much information does it contain? Claud Shannon has provided an elegant way to answer the question from an information theoretic perspective. Its techniques are simple and fundamental, and have become a basis for many modern areas such as data compression and natural language processing. In this talk, we will explore those original ideas and experiments by Claud Shannon.

Biography
Anxiao (Andrew) Jiang received the B.Sc. degree in electronic engineering from Tsinghua University, Beijing, China in 1999, and the M.Sc. and Ph.D. degrees in electrical engineering from the California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, California in 2000 and 2004, respectively. He is currently an Associate Professor in the Computer Science and Engineering Department at Texas A&M University. His research areas include deep learning, information theory, data storage and algorithm design.

Faculty Contact: Ricardo Gutierrez-Osuna


Peter O'Hearn's paper: "Continuous Reasoning: Scaling the impact of formal methods"

Monday, Feb. 4

Jeff Huang
Assistant Professor
Texas A&M University

Abstract
Formal reasoning about programs is one of the oldest and most fundamental research directions in computer science. It has also been one of the most elusive. There has been a tremendous amount of valuable research in formal methods, but rarely have formal reasoning techniques been deployed as part of the development process of large industrial Codebases. This talk describes recent work by Peter O'Hearn in continuous reasoning, where formal reasoning about a (changing) codebase is done in a fashion which mirrors the iterative, continuous model of software development that is increasingly practiced in industry. At Facebook, the Infer program analyzer developed by O'Hearn's team runs internally on Facebook’s code bases, resulting in thousands of bugs being fixed before they reach production each month. This talk will also describe open problems in continuous reasoning and directions for research for the scientific community.

Biography
Jeff Huang is currently an assistant professor of computer science and engineering at Texas A&M University, where his research has impacted both theory and practice of software engineering.

Faculty Contact: Ricardo Gutierrez-Osuna


Alan Turing's paper on Computing Machinery and Intelligence

Wednesday, Feb. 6

Dylan Shell
Associate Professor
Texas A&M University

Abstract
Turing's 1950 paper shows that any attempt to create minds, which one might reasonably take as a core goal of artificial intelligence, is fundamentally of philosophical interest. Not only did this contribution to the literature plant a seed from which much followed, including ways of sharpening our thinking about the nature of intelligence, but it actively anticipates questions and challenges faced as part of the quest for A.I. more generally. The paper is highly readable and as relevant today as ever. I don't know many other papers that fit that bill; it is one of my all time favourites.

Biography
Dylan Shell received his B.Sc. degree in computational & applied mathematics and computer science from the University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa, and his M.S. and Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Southern California. He is an associate professor of computer science and engineering at Texas A&M University, where he teaches and conducts research. His research aims to synthesize and analyze complex, intelligent behavior in distributed systems that interact with the physical world.

Faculty Contact: Ricardo Gutierrez-Osuna


The Sense of Structure

Monday, Feb. 11

Ricardo Gutierrez-Osuna
Professor
Texas A&M University

Abstract
This talk will discuss how readers of English tend to make decisions concerning what a given document means. It is based on the existence of recognizable patterns in the interpretative process of most readers. Readers take the greatest percentage of their clues not from word choice but rather from the location of words within the structure of a sentence or a paragraph. The talk is based on the book “The sense of structure: writing from the reader’s perspective” by George D. Gopen. It will describe and provide examples on reader’s expectations at the sentence and paragraph levels. It will also challenge pieces of advice that writers often receive on how to improve their writing.

Biography
Ricardo Gutierrez-Osuna received a B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering from the Polytechnic University of Madrid (Spain) in 1992, and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Computer Engineering from North Carolina State University in 1995 and 1998, respectively. He is currently a Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at Texas A&M University. He has broad research interests in speech processing, machine learning, and models of human perception.

Faculty Contact: Ricardo Gutierrez-Osuna