CIS Distinguished Speaker Series


Francine Berman, Ph.D.

Edward P. Hamilton Distinguished Professor in Computer Science,
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute


December 6th 2016

Time: 2:00 pm - 3:15 pm
Place: Center for the Arts, Gore Recital Hall

Got Data? Building a Sustainable Data

Abstract: Innovation in a digital world presupposes that the data will be there when people need it, but will it? Without sufficient data infrastructure and attention to the stewardship and preservation of digital data, data may become inaccessible or lost. This is particularly problematic for data generated by sponsored research projects where the focus is on innovation rather than infrastructure, and support for stewardship and preservation may be short term and ad hoc. 

In this presentation, Berman will discuss sustainability, infrastructure and data, and will explore the opportunities and challenges of creating a viable ecosystem for the data on which current and future research and innovation increasingly depend.
We will also present some recent work from our lab on an end-to-end robotic system that can be used to recognize, unfold, place flat, iron, and fold deformable objects such as shirts and pants. The system is based on predictive thin-shell models in simulation to understand the properties of physical clothing, and is shown to work on a variety of different garments.

Bio:Francine Berman is the Edward P. Hamilton Distinguished Professor in Computer Science at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. She is U.S. lead of the Research Data Alliance, a community-driven international organization created to accelerate research data sharing worldwide. Berman is a fellow of the Association of Computing Machinery (ACM), the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). In 2009, she was the inaugural recipient of the ACM/IEEE-CS Ken Kennedy Award for “influential leadership in the design, development, and deployment of national-scale cyberinfrastructure.” In 2015, she was nominated by President Barack Obama and confirmed by the U.S. Senate to become a member of the National Council on the Humanities. For her accomplishments, leadership, and vision, Berman was recognized by the Library of Congress as a “Digital Preservation Pioneer,” as one of the top women in technology by BusinessWeek and Newsweek, and as one of the top technologists by IEEE Spectrum.