College of Information and Computer Sciences UMass Amherst

College of Information and Computer Sciences UMass Amherst The College of Information and Computer Sciences at the University of Massachusetts Amherst is a top-tier institution dedicated to computing for the common good.
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Explore our graduate and undergraduate programs in computer science and informatics.

Operating as usual

Associate Professor Ethan Zuckerman speaks with Arun Rath of WGBH about the president's recent suspensions from Facebook...
01/08/2021
'Trump Appears To Have Gone Full QAnon,' UMass Internet Scholar Says

Associate Professor Ethan Zuckerman speaks with Arun Rath of WGBH about the president's recent suspensions from Facebook and Twitter, along with his relationship with media outlets like Fox News.

UMass Amherst professor Ethan Zuckerman discusses how the Trumpian internet is processing the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol.

The annual Destination Report from CICS Careers shows where CICS students are headed next. 57% of undergrads will stay i...
01/06/2021

The annual Destination Report from CICS Careers shows where CICS students are headed next. 57% of undergrads will stay in Massachusetts, with 20% going on to graduate programs. 90% of master's recipients are employed or continuing their education. See the report: https://bit.ly/2JQkImV

Congrats to Assistant Professor Marco Serafini for being recognized as an ACM Senior Member! 🎉 More about Marco: https:/...
01/05/2021

Congrats to Assistant Professor Marco Serafini for being recognized as an ACM Senior Member! 🎉 More about Marco: https://marcoserafini.github.io

As 2020 comes to a close and 2021 approaches, a message from Dean Laura Haas: "Looking Back & Looking Ahead."
12/30/2020
Dean's Message: Looking Back & Looking Ahead

As 2020 comes to a close and 2021 approaches, a message from Dean Laura Haas: "Looking Back & Looking Ahead."

Dear CICS Community: With the end of the semester upon us, this is a great time to look back and to look ahead.

With gratitude to every member of our community, we wish you a happy holiday season and joyous new year.
12/23/2020

With gratitude to every member of our community, we wish you a happy holiday season and joyous new year.

Go for the bronze? Lt. Gen. Jody Daniels MS’93, PhD’97 explained the “weird approach” to leadership and career strategy ...
12/22/2020
“Go for the bronze” advises Jody Daniels, computer scientist and first female commanding general of the U.S. Army Reserve – Khoury College of Computer Sciences

Go for the bronze? Lt. Gen. Jody Daniels MS’93, PhD’97 explained the “weird approach” to leadership and career strategy that has taken her to the top of her field in a recent conversation with former CICS classmate and Northeastern University's Khoury College Dean Carla Brodley MS’91, PhD’94. https://www.khoury.northeastern.edu/go-for-the-bronze-advises-jody-daniels-computer-scientist-and-first-female-commanding-general-of-the-u-s-army-reserve/

Describing the challenges in her role, Lt. Gen. Jody J. Daniels told a Khoury audience, “I have to be the face of the Army Reserve, and I have to be the face of women in the Army Reserve, and I have to be the face of officers and other groups.”

Congratulations to CICS Associate Professor Andrew McGregor, who has been named as a 2020 Distinguished Member of the As...
12/18/2020

Congratulations to CICS Associate Professor Andrew McGregor, who has been named as a 2020 Distinguished Member of the Association for Computing Machinery for his outstanding scientific contributions to computing! 🎉 Read more: https://bit.ly/2LTb189

“A lot of people have helped me to make it,” says Thao Trinh, white-hat hacker and CICS senior from Vietnam who recently...
12/12/2020
International CICS Student Lands Commonwealth Cybersecurity Mentorship

“A lot of people have helped me to make it,” says Thao Trinh, white-hat hacker and CICS senior from Vietnam who recently completed a highly competitive mentorship sponsored by the MassCyberCenter. Read her thoughts on cybersecurity and life as an int'l student at UMass Amherst: https://bit.ly/3nom0nX

Thao Trinh, a senior planning to graduate in May with a degree from the College of Information and Computer Sciences, this past semester completed a highly competitive mentorship through the Cybersecurity Mentorship Pilot Program sponsored by the MassCyberCenter.

ICYMI: Professor Andrew McCallum and doctoral student Nicholas Monath of CICS, along with Alex Wade of the Chan Zuckerbe...
12/10/2020
Extracting Knowledge from Biomedical Literature

ICYMI: Professor Andrew McCallum and doctoral student Nicholas Monath of CICS, along with Alex Wade of the Chan Zuckerberg Science Initiative, wrote in Medium about their partnership with the Meta team to advance state-of-the-art technology to extract knowledge from scientific publications. Read more: https://bit.ly/3m46lso

Key Tools and Research Outputs from the Computable Knowledge Project

Professor Deepak Ganesan and former CICS students Pengyu Zhang & Pan Hu received a Boston Patent Lawyers’ Association “I...
12/09/2020
Boston Patent Law Group Honors CICS Team for Inventions

Professor Deepak Ganesan and former CICS students Pengyu Zhang & Pan Hu received a Boston Patent Lawyers’ Association “Invented Here!” award for their invention and successful patents on systems and methods of backscatter communication. Read more: https://bit.ly/33XtTJa

Professor Deepak Ganesan of the College of Computer and Information Sciences (CICS), with former students Pengyu Zhang and Pan Hu, recently received one of the 2020 Boston Patent Lawyers’ Association (BPLA) tenth annual “Invented Here!” Awards for his team’s invention and successful patentin...

Applications are now open for Hack(H)er413! ✨ The event will 🐝 fully remote this year with live events on Saturday, Febr...
12/07/2020

Applications are now open for Hack(H)er413! ✨ The event will 🐝 fully remote this year with live events on Saturday, February 13. Apply here: https://dashboard.hackher413.com/

Congratulations to CICS Distinguished Professor Bruce Croft, who has been elevated to IEEE Fellow for his contributions ...
12/04/2020

Congratulations to CICS Distinguished Professor Bruce Croft, who has been elevated to IEEE Fellow for his contributions to information retrieval. Croft says of the honor, “Even though I have been working in research for many years, it is always a great pleasure to be recognized by my colleagues. It is also an opportunity to acknowledge that nearly all of my work was done in collaboration with outstanding students at UMass Amherst." Read more: bit.ly/3qxd29U

Professor Erik Learned-Miller is quoted in a recent Nature article, discussing his proposal for a federal office to appr...
12/04/2020
Resisting the rise of facial recognition

Professor Erik Learned-Miller is quoted in a recent Nature article, discussing his proposal for a federal office to approve face recognition technologies: “What a federal office would do is provide multiple levels of clearance before a product can enter the market. If the risks far outweigh the benefits, maybe you don’t use that product.”

Read the Nature article: go.nature.com/340YxS7

Read Learned-Miller’s proposal for an FDA-inspired model to regulate face recognition technologies: bit.ly/CICS-FRTWild

Growing use of surveillance technology has prompted calls for bans and stricter regulation.

Wishing a happy, healthy, and safe Thanksgiving to our CICS family! 🤖❤️
11/25/2020

Wishing a happy, healthy, and safe Thanksgiving to our CICS family! 🤖❤️

CICS doctoral students Mahmood Jasim and Pooya Khaloo, and master’s student Somin Wadhwa won best paper at CSCW2020 alon...
11/23/2020
CICS Researchers Create Tools for More Inclusive, Effective Town Halls

CICS doctoral students Mahmood Jasim and Pooya Khaloo, and master’s student Somin Wadhwa won best paper at CSCW2020 along with Assistant Professor Narges Mahyar, Research Assistant Professor Ali Sarvghad, and Amy Zhang of the University of Washington for research on CommunityClick, a system to improve inclusivity for in-person town halls. 🙌 Read more: https://bit.ly/372IuDH

A team of researchers led by UMass Amherst College of Information and Computer Sciences (CICS) doctoral students Mahmood Jasim and Pooya Khaloo, and master’s student Somin Wadhwa received a best paper award at the ACM Conference on Computer-Supported Cooperative Work and Social Computing for “Co...

Registration is open for HackUMass VIII, to be held Dec. 18–20—the largest hardware & software hackathon in western New ...
11/20/2020
HackUMass VIII

Registration is open for HackUMass VIII, to be held Dec. 18–20—the largest hardware & software hackathon in western New England! Priority applications will close Dec. 1. Learn more/register: http://hackumass.com

HackUMass is an outpost for your craziest ideas. December 18 - 20, 2020 at UMass Amherst.

Monday at 11AM ET: All applicants applying to the PhD and MS/PhD programs at CICS are invited to attend a live panel web...
11/18/2020

Monday at 11AM ET: All applicants applying to the PhD and MS/PhD programs at CICS are invited to attend a live panel webinar with current PhD students to get application guidance. You can do this! Register here: https://bit.ly/38TOZeB

Professor Hava Siegelmann is featured as a "Campus Visionary" by UMass Amherst. After 4 years of service with Defense Ad...
11/14/2020

Professor Hava Siegelmann is featured as a "Campus Visionary" by UMass Amherst. After 4 years of service with Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency - DARPA and a Meritorious Public Service Medal, she's back and teaching courses on neural networks and neurodynamics. Read more: https://bit.ly/3nnvNKp

Tuesday at Noon: Join Byron Lowens of Clemson University for his talk in our Rising Stars series, “Toward Privacy Enhanc...
11/09/2020

Tuesday at Noon: Join Byron Lowens of Clemson University for his talk in our Rising Stars series, “Toward Privacy Enhanced Solutions For Granular Control Over Health Data Collected by Wearable Devices.” Learn more/add to calendar: https://bit.ly/36jghYX

Wednesday at 12pm ET: Join distinguished lecturer Jeannette Wing of @DataSciColumbia for “Data for Good: Ensuring the Re...
11/03/2020

Wednesday at 12pm ET: Join distinguished lecturer Jeannette Wing of @DataSciColumbia for “Data for Good: Ensuring the Responsible Use of Data to Benefit Society,” on bringing humanistic perspectives to the invention of new science & technology. Learn more and add to calendar: https://bit.ly/32aq02E

UMass Amherst
11/03/2020

UMass Amherst

This Election Day, be heard. Get out and vote!

Need to find your polling place? This can help: https://bit.ly/34UjwGI #UMassVotes

We’re delighted to announce Cheryl Swanier will join CICS as teaching faculty in January! Dr. Swanier conducts research ...
11/02/2020

We’re delighted to announce Cheryl Swanier will join CICS as teaching faculty in January! Dr. Swanier conducts research in human computer interaction with an emphasis in visual programming of educational simulations. Learn more about her in re:think magazine from National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT): https://bit.ly/34QiTyf

Get your CICS swag: CICS T-shirts and sweatshirts, including the binary tree hoodie in maroon or grey, are now available...
10/31/2020

Get your CICS swag: CICS T-shirts and sweatshirts, including the binary tree hoodie in maroon or grey, are now available through the UMass Bookstore for domestic and international shipping! Supplies are limited—shop here: https://bit.ly/3jFShnz

Michelle Trim, associate director of the informatics program, has been selected to receive a Google exploreCSR award to ...
10/30/2020
Trim Awarded exploreCSR Google Grant for Program to Engage Underrepresented Students in Research

Michelle Trim, associate director of the informatics program, has been selected to receive a Google exploreCSR award to fund EMBER, a new program providing research opportunities to undergrads at CICS and Mount Holyoke College from populations underrepresented in computing. EMBER, which uses a peer mentoring system developed by Pon-Barry at Mount Holyoke, will be implemented in coordination with her and CICS faculty Dan Sheldon, Eliot Moss, and Jim Kurose, along with staff Erika Dawson-Head, Brian Krusell, and Justin Obara. Read more: https://bit.ly/3ejoKza

Michelle Trim, senior lecturer II and associate director of the informatics program at CICS, has been selected to receive a 2020 Google exploreCSR award to fund the development of a student engagement workshop program, Energizing Mentoring and Broadening Exposure to Research (EMBER).

TODAY at 4PM EST—join Adnan Darwiche, professor and former chair of @CS_UCLA, for his Distinguished Lecture Series talk,...
10/28/2020
DLS: Three Modern Roles for Logic in AI

TODAY at 4PM EST—join Adnan Darwiche, professor and former chair of @CS_UCLA, for his Distinguished Lecture Series talk, “Three Modern Roles for Logic in AI.” He will discuss three modern roles for logic in artificial intelligence, which are based on the theory of tractable Boolean circuits: (1) logic as a basis for computation, (2) logic for learning from a combination of data and knowledge, and (3) logic for reasoning about the behavior of machine learning systems. Learn more: https://bit.ly/3mtbESH

Abstract: I will discuss three modern roles for logic in artificial intelligence, which are based on the theory of tractable Boolean circuits: (1) logic as a basis for computation, (2) logic for learning from a combination of data and knowledge, and (3) logic for reasoning about the behavior of mach...

UMass Amherst
10/23/2020

UMass Amherst

UMass Amherst has announced the Spring 2021 Operating Plan, one that emphasizes a strong COVID-19 testing program and a strict adherence to public health protocols while advancing students’ academic progress toward degree completion.

In-person, face-to-face instruction for undergraduate and graduate students will be offered on-campus this spring in certain classes, labs and studios identified as requiring in-person instruction. First-year students may also be provided with a face-to-face instructional opportunity, although the majority of the teaching in the Spring Semester will be fully remote.

Specific cohorts of undergraduate students, whose academic success is most closely associated with on-campus learning and living, will be given the option to live on-campus for the Spring Semester. These cohorts include:

· Students enrolled in mandatory face-to-face classes
· Students dependent on the university for housing and dining, including international students, as well as students requiring specific academic accommodations or those participating in athletics
· First-year students and entering transfer students, enrolled in Fall 2020 and Spring 2021

Students who decline this invitation would join all other students who will continue to engage in remote learning from their homes or their off-campus residences.

Questions? Check out our one-stop guide of campus contacts: umass.edu/coronavirus/one-stop-guide-key-dates-and-campus-contacts

View the full plan here: www.umass.edu/spring

10/23/2020
UMass Amherst COVID-19 Heroes Tribute

“Let’s take this education that we have and make some good trouble with it." 😁 Feeling proud of CICS alum Shashi Buluswar '95MS, ’02PhD for his work to create an oxygen delivery device that can be used in remote villages, hospitals, cities, and even in homes. Watch the "COVID-19 Heroes Tribute" from the UMass Amherst Alumni Association: https://youtu.be/HW3iJXPSutM

Times have been tough but Minutemen are tougher. Join Chancellor Kumble R. Subbaswamy, alumni, and friends to kick off Homecoming by celebrating members of t...

A paper by Assistant Professor Jie Xiong and doctoral students Minhao Cui & Yuda Feng received an honorable mention best...
10/21/2020
CICS Researchers Demonstrate Security Flaw in Visible Light Communication

A paper by Assistant Professor Jie Xiong and doctoral students Minhao Cui & Yuda Feng received an honorable mention best paper award at #MobiCom2020, demonstrating how visible light communication—being considered for inclusion in 6G wireless networks—can be eavesdropped more easily than previously believed.

Assistant Professor Jie Xiong of the UMass Amherst College of Information and Computer Sciences (CICS), along with CICS doctoral students Minhao Cui and Yuda Feng, have been recognized with a Best Paper Honorable Mention award for “Sniffing Visible Light Communication Through Walls,” presented a...

10/20/2020
MechanoBeat

What if objects could have mechanical “heartbeats” to help monitor interactions with them? CICS researchers Tauhidur Rahman, Md Farhan Tasnim Oshim, and Julian Killingback from the MOSAIC Lab + colleagues from UMass IALS and the University of Maryland present “MechanoBeat” this week at UIST 2020. Read the paper: https://bit.ly/2YhruX4

It’s Majors Week! Explore the undergraduate computer science and informatics majors at CICS, meet some of our students, ...
10/19/2020
Majors Week 2020

It’s Majors Week! Explore the undergraduate computer science and informatics majors at CICS, meet some of our students, and connect with peer advisors and faculty during drop-in sessions all week.

Take advantage of a week-long opportunity to explore the undergraduate computer science and informatics majors offered by the UMass Amherst College of Information and Computer Sciences. Watch our on-demand videos and connect with peer advisors and faculty to find out if our majors are right for you.

Join a discussion on Nov. 6 about the film Coded Bias with the director, Dean Laura Haas, and College of Engineering Dea...
10/16/2020
Coded Bias Film Discussion

Join a discussion on Nov. 6 about the film Coded Bias with the director, Dean Laura Haas, and College of Engineering Dean Sanjay Raman. The film, which features Joy Buolamwini of the Algorithmic Justice League and her discovery of racial bias in face recognition AI, will stream virtually for the UMass community from Nov. 1–7. You'll need to register both for the film (to get free access) AND for the discussion. Get details here: https://www.cics.umass.edu/event/coded-bias-film-discussion

Join us for a conversation about the film Coded Bias on Friday, November 6 featuring director Shalini Katayaa, CICS Dean Laura Haas, and College of Engineering Dean Sanjay Raman. This will be from 11:30 AM to 1 PM EST on Zoom. We’ll be answering questions live and discussing future implications fo...

The tech startup Interactiva Studios, founded by CICS undergrads Adrian Chase and Joseph Savell, is using the Unity plat...
10/14/2020

The tech startup Interactiva Studios, founded by CICS undergrads Adrian Chase and Joseph Savell, is using the Unity platform to develop an immersive virtual tour for prospective students who can’t visit campus in person. They've already built virtual replicas of the W.E.B. Du Bois Library, Campus Pond, and more! Check out the demo and visit the library, entirely from your home: https://bit.ly/33VYNC0

Alumni—join our Computing for the Common Good Showcase on Oct. 22 from 7:00–8:30pm ET, held on the gather.town platform....
10/14/2020

Alumni—join our Computing for the Common Good Showcase on Oct. 22 from 7:00–8:30pm ET, held on the gather.town platform. Create your avatar and join our virtual world to catch up and connect—you may "bump into" someone you haven’t seen in years! Learn more and register: https://bit.ly/372Q0jK

A paper by recent CICS doctoral graduate Emma Tosch—co-authored by Facebook's Eytan Bakshy and CICS Professors Emery Ber...
10/09/2020
Doctoral Graduate Emma Tosch’s Work Highlighted by ACM SIGPLAN

A paper by recent CICS doctoral graduate Emma Tosch—co-authored by Facebook's Eytan Bakshy and CICS Professors Emery Berger, David Jensen, and Eliot Moss—has been selected as a Research Highlight by ACM SIGPLAN. The researchers' work introduces PlanAlyzer, a novel approach to statistically checking common errors in online field experiments. https://bit.ly/2SIdmCV

A paper by UMass Amherst College of Information and Computer Sciences (CICS) recent doctoral graduate Emma Tosch, co-authored by Eytan Bakshy of Facebook and CICS Professors Emery Berger, David Jensen, and Eliot Moss, was recently selected by the ACM Special Interest Group on Programming Languages (...

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