Saturday, November 2, 2013

Popular Mechanics magazine names Vijay Kumar and his team as one of the "10 Innovators Who Changed the World in 2013"

TerraSwarm researcher and University of Pennsylvania professor Vijay Kumar and his team have been named one of the "10 Innovators Who Changed the World in 2013" by Popular Mechanics magazine. 

An October 22, 2013 blog entry about the Breakthrough Award Panel titled "BTA Panel: The Rise of Autonomous Vehicles," discusses the moral and legal issues involved with UAVs.   Kumar is quoted as saying "We just love our robots.  I don't know why people think they are scary.  We made the James Bond video to dispel the myth that they're scary creatures."  Kumar believes that some of the objections to drones are because the laws surround drones are unsettled.  He does note that many people are concerned about the difference between a low-flying drone with camera vs. a high orbiting satellite with a camera.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

"The Implant Was Fatal, At Least On TV"

Gina Kolata's October 29, 2013 NY Times article "The Implant Was Fatal, At Least On  TV" (page D1), discusses Dick Cheney's decision to have the wireless functionality of his pacemaker disabled.

University of Michigan Professor and TerraSwarm Researcher Kevin Fu is quoted in the article:
"My opinion is it is probably unlikely that a remote attack of this nature could happen today,"
Professor Fu emphasized the word "probably" and was later quoted as saying "There can always be a flaw we are unaware of".

The article is available on the NY Times website as "Of Fact, Fiction and Cheney's Defibrillator".

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Proceedings for the 2013 Workshop on Modeling and Simulation of Cyber-Physical Energy Systems (MSCPES) Berkeley are available

The Proceedings for the 2013 Workshop on Modeling and Simulation of Cyber-Physical Energy Systems (MSCPES), held at Berkeley on May 20, 2013, are now available from IEEE Explore
The scope of the workshop was:
Modern energy systems combine information technology, electrical and thermal infrastructure, autonomous roles and interact with other systems like markets and regulations. Existing modeling and simulation tools are not capable to cover such systems in all of their aspects, new languages, methods and tools are necessary. A combination of universal modeling languages like Modelica and established, specialized tools like grid simulators and telecommunication simulators is necessary. This leads to modeling and co-simulating hybrid systems where for instance a multi-agent framework and an electric grid simulator are combined to investigate smart electric vehicle charging algorithms. It is especially the potential size of such systems that constitute a challenge for modeling and simulation. Implementing these future CPS are another substantial challenge. The designed algorithms need to be compact, computationally inexpensive, potentially self-organizing and intrinsically stable if applied to real energy systems. New methods and alternative ways are necessary to overcome these challenges.
TerraSwarm researchers presented the work below:

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Professor George Pappas' NSF CPS-PI Meeting Keynote features TerraSwarm

University of Pennsylvania Professor George Pappas presented a Science of CPS Keynote at the NSF 2013 CPS Principal Investigators' Meeting, Arlington.  The keynote was titled, "Differential Privacy in Cyber-Physical Systems." To illustrate that the time is now for this research, Pappas used the TSensors Summit and TerraSwarm.

Pappas' summary points were:
  • Many cyber-physical applications raise privacy concerns that need to be addressed to encourage user participation.
  • There is a need for privacy-preserving mechanisms for various types of dynamic systems and data.
  • Characterizing privacy-utility tradeoffs requires a quantitative definition of privacy.
  • System and control theoretic tools (optimal estimators, system gains) can be used to design differentially private mechanisms
George Pappas. Differential Privacy in Cyber-Physical Systems, Talk or presentation, 17, October, 2013; Science of CPS Keynote at the NSF 2013 CPS Principal Investigators' Meeting, Arlington.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Slashdot: Ask Professor Kevin Fu About Medical Device Security

Professor Kevin Fu of the University of Michigan is fielding questions on Slashdot:

  "Kevin Fu is a professor of electrical engineering and computer science at the University of Michigan. He heads a research group on medical-device security, Archimedes, that works to find vulnerabilities in medical equipment. WattsUpDoc, a system that can detect malware on medical devices by monitoring changes in power consumption, is based on his work. Professor Fu has agreed to put down the pacemakers for a moment and answer your questions about his work and medical device security in general. As usual, ask as many as you'd like, but please, one question per post."

Professor Fu also participates in the TerraSwarm Research Center.

Monday, June 10, 2013

UC Berkeley to join the Open Source Modelica Consortium 

At the prompting of Professor Edward A. Lee, UC Berkeley is to join the Open Source Modelica Consortium (OSMC).  The purpose of the OSMC is to support long term development of OpenModelica and its associated tools and libraries.  OpenModelica is an open source implementation of the Modelica language that is used in academia and industry for modeling, compilation and simulation. Professor Lee is interested in how the Functional Mock-up Interface (FMI) can be used to co-simulate and exchange models.  The FMI standard effort is being led by a number of Modelica vendors.  In particular, Professor Lee is applying his expertise in the semantics of heterogeneous models of computation and how they handle the notion of time.  These issues are of concern when different modeling tools exchange information.  The OSMC is led by Professor Peter Fritzson of Link√∂ping University.

Friday, June 7, 2013

"Futuristic UC Berkeley operating system uniquely controls discrete 'manycore' resources"

A Network World article by Ellen Messmer, "Futuristic UC Berkeley operating system uniquely controles discrete 'manycore' resources," describes the Tesselation operating system by Professor John Kubiatowicz.  The article states:

"According to Kubiatowicz, Tessellation -- which is a math term for how shapes can be arranged to fill a plane without any gaps -- is an innovative OS that looks to define resources such as bandwidth for cloud storage, latency to response, and requests for database services in a continuous adaptive manner based on its concept of resource containers."

Professor Kubiatowicz' work is sponsored in part by the TerraSwarm Research Center.  One of the intended outcomes of TerraSwarm is SwarmOS, which will provide a swarm of services at the edge of the cloud.

The article also mentions Professor Edward A. Lee's presentation on the Internet of Things and Professor Alberto Sangiovann-Vincentelli's closing keynote.  Both presentations mentioned the TerraSwarm Research Center.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Tiny flying robots! Meet the quadrotor

"Tiny Flying Robots!  Meet the Quadrotor"

A May 1, 2013 CNN article, "Tiny Flying Robots! Meet the Quadrotor," covers the work of Vijay Kumar, faculty at University of Pennsylvania and TerraSwarm Researcher.  The article discusses the efforts of Kumar and others at the General Robotics, Automation, Sensing and Perception Lab concerning using quadrotors in Japan after the 2011 earthquake.  The idea was to use quadrotor aircraft to map the interior of unstable buildings.  Kumar is quoted as stating "We went into a collapsed building; we mapped three floors. We got three-dimensional maps, and we were able to show that this sort of thing is feasible today."

TerraSwarm Research Roozbeh Jafari develops better EEG Sensor for brain controlled tablets

"Samsung Demos a  Tablet Controlled By Your Brain"

An April 19, 2013 article titled "Samsung Demos a Tablet Controlled By Your Brain" on the MIT Technology Review site covers the work of Roozbeh Jafari, faculty at UT Dallas and TerraSwarm researcher.   The article states that working in conjunction with Jafari, "Samsung researchers are testing how people can use their thoughts to launch an application, select a contact, select a song from a playlist, or power up or down a Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1."

Jafari's research in this area involves creating EEG sensors that can be set up in 10 seconds by having the user wear a cap.  This is in contrast to traditional wet EEG sensors that, depending on the number of sensors, can take up to 45 minutes to set up.

Welcome to the The TerraSwarm Research Center Blog

Welcome to the TerraSwarm Research Center Blog!  This blog will cover news items about the TerraSwarm Research Center.

The TerraSwarm Research Center, launched on January 15, 2013, is addressing the huge potential (and associated risks) of pervasive integration of smart, networked sensors and actuators into our connected world. The center is funded by the STARnet phase of the Focus Center Research Program (FCRP) administered by the Semiconductor Research Corporation (SRC). Funding comes from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) and the SRC industry partners, including Applied Materials, GLOBALFOUNDRIES, IBM, Intel Corporation, Micron Technology, Raytheon, Texas Instruments, and United Technologies.