August 202 Newsletter

IEEE continues to strengthen its footing in a COVID-19 world through virtual events that bring new opportunities for interaction. The Rochester Section Young Professionals (YP) affinity group cosponsored a virtual IEEE Trivia night with the New York City YP group. Over 20 teams, each with up to 4 people, participated in the virtual trivia contest that put their IEEE, science, engineering, and nerdy knowledge to the test.

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2020 IEEE Rochester Section Undergraduate Scholarship awarded to Madeline Loui.


Submitted by: Howard Bussey 

Here is this months Newsletter!

Work on COVID-19 Monitoring by Cristiano Tapparello

Cristiano Tapparello, research assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering, who also serves as the director of software engineering for the innovative UR Health Lab led by chemical engineering alumnus Dave Mitten ’88 ’92(MD), spent some long hours back in March helping the lab develop the chatbot technology now familiar to many of us as Dr. Chatbot, which enables the University to screen its employees daily for symptoms of COVID-19.

Initially devised to screen incoming calls to the Medical Center’s COVID-19 Hotline, the technology was then adapted to also screen essential Medical Center employees during the lock down. That iteration of Dr. Chatbot is now being extended to non-Medical Center employees and students as well.

The technology now has been further adapted so that citizens throughout our 13-county region can voluntarily respond daily to a brief questionnaire about whether they have symptoms, as part of the ROC Covid-19 project. This will be an important tool to help regional health officials quickly detect any uptick in cases — within individual zip code areas — as the region continues a phased reopening of businesses and other activities. Please consider participating in this daily screening as well; with enough participation, we lessen the chances of having to shut down the entire region again.

Cristiano, the front end designer for the interactive displays you see at these chatbot sites, has also been working with Mt. Hope Family Center research associate Christie Petrenko to create the first mobile phone app for caregivers of children with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD).

(From Hajim Highlights, published by the University of Rochester, 22 June 2020)

Distance learning tip if you need to maintain office hours

If you need to hold office hours in these days of distancing, and your on-line meeting service has a “waiting room” feature, then you can create a recurring meeting for your office hours and send the access information to your students. Then start the meeting and admit your students one at a time from the waiting room to the office hours meeting, waiting for each to leave before admitting the next.

This same tip could be used if your job requires you to consult with a large number of your colleagues and you need some time for your own work.

May 2020 Newsletter

On Saturday, April 4, a virtual Terra Rochester Finger Lakes Science and Engineering Fair took place. Approximately 56 students presented their projects, each in one of seven assigned virtual rooms. In each virtual room a supervisor and about five judges scored the 4 presentations assigned to that room. The morning sessions saw and heard project presentations from senior-level (high school) students, and the afternoon sessions had 6th, 7th, and 8th-grade student presentations. The judges individually scored the presentations using an online form and made special award recommendations after group discussions. The top presenter from each senior session room went on to the second round.

Judging for the second round took place Monday, April 6th, in evening. The finalists presented their projects to a select group of judges who determined the highest level awards for the virtual fair. Rochester IEEE Section members Mark Schrader and Ram Dhurjaty Ph.D. served as judges in the first round, and Ram served as a judge in the second round. Both Mark and Ram are founding (IEEE) Terra Rochester Finger Lakes Science and Engineering Fair members and serve on the Organizing Committee.




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Submitted by: Howard Bussey

Here is this months Newsletter!

June 2020 Newsletter

The Rochester Signal Processing Society hosted a virtual zoom session on Thurs, April 30th entitled “Fast Deep Learning Prototypes with Tensorflow and Keras Tutorial”, by RIT PhD student Miguel Dominguez. 63 people registered for this hour-long session which included the distribution of iPython notebook sample code and deep learning software installation instructions.

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Deep Learning Training Performance


Submitted by: Howard Bussey 

Here is this months Newsletter!

2020 IEEE Student Scholarship awarded to Madeline Loui

The winner of the IEEE Rochester Section, RES Scholarship for 2020, is Madeline Loui. Madeline is a Junior at Georgia Institute of Technology with a 4.0 GPA, who is majoring in Electrical Engineering. She began distinguishing herself with a summer internship at RIT while still in high school, by writing software to analyze images of an ancient map to reveal hidden content.

At GIT, Madeline has worked with NASA Goddard Space Flight Center on several projects, including developing custom hardware and software for a satellite-based object recognition system using a convolutional neural network and a stereo vision algorithm. She worked with Northop Grumman on standardized data validation software, as well as security software. In the classroom, Madeline has served as a teaching assistant in a digital design lab, providing mentoring and technical assistance for 30 students. Professionally, she is serving as the Chair of the Atlanta, Georgia chapter of Women in Electrical and Computer Engineering Industry, as the point of contact for faculty, industry sponsors, and social media outreach.

Publication in IEEE Conference: Undergraduate Education Highlight

George Klimiashvili, a recent University of Rochester graduate, said,

“One of the proudest moments of my college career and my life in general was getting published in the IEEE conference as a first author.”

George is a recipient of The Charles L. Newton Prize, which recognizes engineering students who show a special proficiency in an engineering subject and have conducted research, given a presentation, or published a paper.

Here is the reference to George’s paper: G. Klimiashvili, C. Tapparello and W. Heinzelman, “LoRa vs. WiFi Ad Hoc: A Performance Analysis and Comparison,” 2020 International Conference on Computing, Networking and Communications (ICNC), Big Island, HI, USA, 2020, pp. 654-660, doi: 10.1109/ICNC47757.2020.9049724.