Fall 2014

September 16, 2014 to September 17, 2014

Statistical Analysis of Network Data: (Re)visiting the Foundations

Speaker: Eric Kolaczyk (Boston University)

It has been nearly 20 years now since what might be described as a revolution in complex networks arguably began. With dozens of disciplines engaged in doing `network science', the impact of this revolution on science in general has been...

September 30, 2014

Better Late (40 years late!) Than Never: Monday Morning Quarterbacking the Coordinated- Attack Problem

Speaker: Eli Gafni (UCLA)

The Coordinated-Attack problem was posed and proved impossible in 1975. It held the promise of creating a new kind of reasoning about computing: the field of distributed algorithms. It did not pan out that way. Only old-timers still remember...

October 7, 2014 to October 8, 2014

Recent Research at MIT ACL on Planning and Learning for Robotic Applications

Speaker: Jonathan P. How (LIDS, MIT)

This talk will present recent research on planning and learning for several air and ground robotic applications done at the MIT Aerospace Controls Laboratory (ACL). ACL combines theoretical research on decision making under uncertainty; path...

October 14, 2014 to October 15, 2014

Bio-mimetic Drones: from collision free to collision friendly

Speaker: Dario Floreano (EPFL)

I will give an overview of my research in bio-mimetic drones for flight in confined spaces in safe interaction with humans. I will start by presenting miniature and small-size robots capable of performing collision-free flight and altitude...

October 21, 2014 to October 22, 2014

On the Role of Common Information In Decision-Making Under Uncertainty

Speaker: Demosthenis Teneketzis (University of Michigan)

We discuss the role of common information in decision-making under uncertainty. We present the “common information methodology” and show how it can be used to solve a broad class of dynamic team problems that were previously unsolved. We...

October 28, 2014 to October 29, 2014

Traffic Offloading and Exchange of Service Schemes in Wireless Network Architectures

Speaker: Leandros Tassiulas (Yale)

The proliferation of mobile internet access poses new challenges to wireless service providers as the capacity growth of their networks cannot cope with the rate of increase of mobile wireless traffic. Alternate means are considered to deal...

November 4, 2014 to November 5, 2014

Stochastic Dynamic Bin Packing with Applications to Cloud Computing

Speaker: Yuan Zhong (Columbia University)

We present a new class of bin packing models, so-called large-scale stochastic dynamic bin packing, which are primarily motivated by the problem of virtual machine placement into physical servers in cloud computing clusters. A key...

November 18, 2014 to November 19, 2014

Engineering and Learning Visual Representations: Invariance, Sufficiency, and the role of Control

Speaker: Stefano Soatto (UCLA)

Visual Representations are functions of visual data tailored for decision and control tasks, where much of the variability is due to nuisance factors such as viewpoint, illumination, partial occlusion. An optimal representation would be...

November 25, 2014 to November 26, 2014

Nested polarized constructions: properties and design

Speaker: Ilya Dumer (Univ. of California, Riverside)

Polar codes can achieve channel capacity with low decoding complexity and have become one of the most exciting recent developments in coding theory. Reed-Muller (RM) codes - known for 60 years - lately have garnered a lot of interest in the...

December 2, 2014 to December 3, 2014

Optimal estimation of entropy and other properties via best polynomial approximation

Speaker: Yihong Wu (Univ. of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign)

Consider the problem of estimating the Shannon entropy of a distribution on k elements from n independent samples. We provide a non-asymptotic characterization of the optimal mean-square estimation error within universal multiplicative...

December 9, 2014 to December 10, 2014

Optimizing Product Launches in the Presence of Strategic Consumers

Speaker: Ilan Lobel (NYU)

A technology firm launches newer generations of a given product over time. At any moment, the firm decides whether to release a new version of the product that captures the current technology level at the expense of a fixed launch cost....