Tuesday, August 24, 2010

NY Area CS + Economics (NYCE) Meeting III

The organizers are bringing together a terrific set of speakers. Here is their call for contributions to the rump session. -- Metoo

We invite participants to the third New York Computer Science and Economics Day (NYCE Day), October 15 2010, at the New York Academy of Sciences, 7 World Trade Center.

Details at: www.nyas.org/nyce2010

NYCE Day is a gathering for people in the larger New York City metropolitan area with interests in computer science, economics, marketing and finance to discuss common research problems and topics in a relaxed environment. The aim is to foster collaboration and the exchange of ideas.

The program features invited speakers Robert Almgren (NYU and Quantitative Brokers), Sham Kakade (Wharton), Robert Kleinberg (Cornell), Hal Varian (Google), and Mihalis Yannakakis (Columbia), and a rump session with short contributed presentations.

Call for Rump Session Speakers---Deadline September 13: We are currently soliciting speakers for the rump session. Each speaker will have 5 minutes to describe a problem and result, an experiment/system and results, or an open problem or a big challenge. If you would like to speak, please send a one paragraph text description of what you would like to present, including links to references if needed, to physicalscience@nyas.org with NYCE in the subject line. Submissions must be received by Monday, September 13 and accepted speakers will be notified by September 20.

Your participation and suggestions are greatly welcome. Please pass this information on to people who may be interested.

NYCE Organizers
Christian Borgs, Microsoft
Michael Kearns, University of Pennsylvania
Sebastien Lahaie, Yahoo!
Vahab Mirrokni, Google


Sunday, August 22, 2010

NSF: Social, Behavioral, Economic Sciences

NSF has called for white papers on challenges in Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences "outlining grand challenge questions that are both foundational and transformative. They are foundational in the sense that they reflect deep issues that engage fundamental assumptions behind disciplinary research traditions and are transformative because they seek to leverage current findings to unlock a new cycle of research." Deadline Sept 30, in Microsoft Word. "We invite you, now, to step outside of present demands and to think boldly about future promises."


Paint (v)

The past few months, I haven't found the time to paint. My friend Patrick (wiser, painterer) told me that you are never far from your sense of painting even if you are away from your canvas and brush. May be. Here is my whim, my Botero, Magritte and Cézanne, via the iPhone.

Friday, August 20, 2010

World of PR

Not only marketers and advertisers, but also public relations (PR) folks use the Internet. What are some of their concerns? Here is a nice article with interview snippets on PR and social media. Here is the story about the origins of PR:

On October 28, 1906, at least 50 people lost their lives when a three-car train of the Pennsylvania Railroad's newly equipped electric service jumped a trestle at Atlantic City, NJ, and plunged into the Thoroughfare creek.

That afternoon, Ivy Lee, who some consider to be the father of modern PR, created the first press release. The Pennsylvania Railroad was one of his clients. Following the accident, Lee not only convinced the railroad to distribute a public statement, he also convinced them to provide a special train to get reporters to the scene of the accident.

The New York Times was so impressed with this innovative approach to corporate communications that it printed the first press release—verbatim—on Oct. 30, 1906 as a "Statement from the Road."

Monday, August 16, 2010

Game Theory of Grades

The Ultrinsic website lets college students in 30+ campuses gamble on their final grades. Here are articles in Chronicles (covers NYU and Penn), NJ Star Ledger (Rutgers and Princeton), etc. The comments bring out the many strategic issues such as when one has incentive to fail in order to win or when students will blame professors, etc.


Count-Min Sketch Analytics

With Statistics, you know how it is, it has to be served at the right time! :) Here is how 522 pageviews this week were distributed for the count-min site.
/site/countminsketch/ 209
/site/countminsketch/home/expositions 42
/site/countminsketch/cm-eclectics 34
/site/countminsketch/compressed-sensing 27
/site/countminsketch/code 26
/site/countminsketch/databases 26
Internet Explorer10


WAW, the graph view of the web:

Dear colleague,

We are delighted to let you know that this year's WAW is co-located with WINE 2010 in Stanford, CA, during December 2010. Please see the CFP at http://www.stanford.edu/group/waw

WAW aims to further the understanding of graphs that arise from the Web and various user activities on the Web, and stimulate the development of high-performance algorithms and applications that exploit these graphs. We are working with the Chairs of WINE 2010 to put together an outstanding four-day event at Stanford, including two eminent plenary speakers, excellent logistics and affordable registration, especially for students and postdoctoral researchers. We have also drafted the CFP to be significantly broader in scope than in previous years, and look forward to an exciting array of submissions.

Thanks, and hope to see your submission to WAW, and to see you in Stanford during the conference.

Best regards,

Ravi & Siva


Saturday, August 14, 2010

Rambling about Windows

Feel in a rambling mood. So here is something about windows into past, into self, or otherwise.

Sunday, August 08, 2010

Tracking Research

For some time now, I have been thinking about an issue. One has a technique, a niche problem or whatever in mind. An example is the technique of Cuckoo Hashing. Someone writes a paper on it, some implement it, some extend it, yet others find ways to apply it in different areas of CS, write wikipedia articles for wider consumption, or discuss it in books, tutorials etc. How do we track the full impact of this? Citations and citation counts don't quite work (nothing more frustrating for an author than finding their paper cited within a long list of papers on a topic with no specific reason). One can start a ``curated'' web site where one lists most relevant of related work and write a commentary. This has been done nicely for say smoothed analysis or compressed sensing. But ultimately, it will be great if the community can collaborate and develop such sites organically.

In that spirit, Graham Cormode and I have set up a "wiki site" on the Count-Min sketch. This is a simple technique that ultimately proves useful for efficiently estimating many of the statistics one cares about on data streams, and we have been surprised by its applications in machine learning to NLP, computer games, security and beyond, and also by its various implementations in systems to hardware. The site has some structure (including FAQ) and we have populated it some. Sites like this are not much fun unless other researchers contribute -- papers, plots, comments --- whatever to extend, enhance or detract. If you want to modify this site, please email (algo.research@gmail.com, graham@research.att.com) and we will add you as a collaborator.


Monday, August 02, 2010

NY Plays

NY city constantly invents, discovers, and changes itself.
The new imagination playground in Burling Slip, foam, sand, and water with shapes and forms yet to be conceived and built by kids.

The Poets House in Battery Park with 50k volumes.

On Wall Street, one of the interactive touch-screen panels with camera and coupons.

More Mapreduce

Slowly, academic papers are emerging on the MapReduce model: here is a list of recent papers from bio to GPUs, decision trees and beyond, and a system-sy bib. We are still far from developing a theory of algorithms for it, but some good examples are emerging. In WWW 2010, Flavio Chierichetti, Ravi Kumar and Andrew Tomkins had this paper Max-Cover in Map-Reduce which is a quintessential algorithms paper in MapReduce model, enjoy! For a puzzle, consider solving the prefix sums problem. How many rounds do you need in MapReduce?