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UW CSE’s Ed Lazowska on current efforts in the WA legislature to increase computer science educational opportunities

Picture 110UW CSE’s Ed Lazowska writes in the WTIA blog:

“Our industry creates a wide variety of jobs, employing people with a wide variety of preparation.  But at its heart, our industry (and our state’s overall economic growth) is powered by the “essential ICT occupations” as defined  in WTIA’s recent ICT Economic & Fiscal Impact Study

“There are several moves afoot in the current legislative session that would make a real difference if enacted.

“One is H.B. 1813, introduced by Reps. Drew Hansen and Chad Magendanz, which includes a number of smart provisions related to computer science in K-12.

“A second is the Governor’s request, in his capital budget, for partial funding of a second building to accommodate growth for UW CSE …

“A third is work by Reps. Hansen and Magendanz that will hopefully lead to operating funds enabling expansion of the computer science programs at UW CSE, WSU EECS, and WWU Computer Science – the three programs that leading employers have told these legislators are their principal in-state suppliers of talent.”

Read more here.

March 3, 2015

“Insight to Impact: Transforming Washington’s Industries Through Big Data”

TAMatt McIlwain (Madrona Venture Group), Carlos Guestrin (UW CSE and Dato), Joseph Sirosh (Microsoft), and Dina Bass (Bloomberg News) engage the audience at “Insight to Impact: Transforming Washington’s Industries Through Big Data,” co-sponsored by the Technology Alliance and UW CSE.

More about the event here.

March 3, 2015

Welcome to Seattle, Uber engineering!

timOur alum Tim Prouty writes:

“It’s now official that I will be starting up Uber‘s Seattle engineering team! I’ll be working directly for Paul Mikesell [also a UW CSE alum], and we’re going to do an official launch in early April. I couldn’t be more excited! …

“At Uber one of my primary goals will be to grow the team very rapidly from 0 to 50+ people this year, so we’ll be working hard to make a splash in the Seattle technology community over the next few months …”

Welcome, Uber!  It’s great to have another top technology company in Seattle!

Many more details in a GeekWire post here.

March 3, 2015

Meet the next generation of UW CSE student

We better get a move on with the construction of our new building, if this photo is any indication of future demand! Kudos to mom, a former colleague in the UW College of Engineering, for steering him toward the right major. Maybe we should relax our early admission policy …

Cute baby wearing UW CSE t-shirt

March 2, 2015

UW CSE’s Richard Ladner receives Richard A. Tapia Achievement Award


Richard Ladner receives the award from Valerie Taylor, Richard Tapia, and Charles Isbell.

On Friday February 20, UW CSE professor Richard Ladner received the Richard A. Tapia Achievement Award for Scientific Scholarship, Civic Science and Diversifying Computing.

Richard was honored “for his incredible commitment and contributions to the disability community in computing.” After many years of research in theoretical computer science, he turned his attention to accessibility technology research, especially technology for deaf, deaf-blind, hard-of-hearing, and blind people.

In addition to being a Guggenheim Fellow, a Fulbright Scholar, and a Fellow of ACM and IEEE, Richard has received the Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics and Engineering Mentoring (PAESMEM), the Computing Research Association’s A. Nico Habermann Award, the Purpose Prize, and the University of Washington Outstanding Public Service Award.

Congratulations Richard! Read more here.

March 1, 2015

Nova Barlow of UW CSE’s Center for Game Science delivers straight talk on community management at GDC

Nova Barlow

Photo credit: J. Hayter

Next week, tens of thousands of interactive game industry professionals will converge on San Francisco for the annual Game Developers Conference® (GDC) – the world’s largest and longest-running event of its kind – for five days of lectures, roundtable discussions, tutorials, and celebrations of all things game-related. Among them will be Nova Barlow, community manager at UW CSE’s Center for Game Science, who is leading a panel of industry veterans in some straight talk about community management.

Noting that “community management is no longer a quiet job behind the scenes,” the organizers are staging the first-ever Community Management Summit and devoting an entire day to this aspect of the game industry. Nova’s panel will discuss the history and challenges of community management and identify ways to transition this increasingly popular role from stepping-stone job to viable career path.

“I was encouraged by my co-workers at the Center for Game Science to submit the idea for the panel – a topic I’ve been kicking about in my own head for a while – to the GDC organizers,” said Nova. “I’m looking forward to contributing to the conference and being able to draw upon the experience of my fellow panelists.”

The Game Developers Conference® is March 2-6.

Learn more about Nova’s GDC session here.

Check out the latest news from the Center for Game Science here.

February 27, 2015

SRO for UW CSE Ph.D. alum and Google Senior Fellow Jeff Dean

IMG_4755 copyThe fire marshal was blessedly AWOL for today’s UW CSE Distinguished Lecture featuring 1996 Ph.D. alum Jeff Dean, “Large-Scale Deep Learning For Building Intelligent Computer Systems.”

JeffJeff joined Google in 1999 and is currently a Google Senior Fellow in Google’s Knowledge Group, where he leads Google’s deep learning research team in Mountain View. He has co-designed/implemented five generations of Google’s crawling, indexing, and query serving systems, and co-designed/implemented major pieces of Google’s initial advertising and AdSense for Content systems. He is also a co-designer and co-implementor of Google’s distributed computing infrastructure, including the MapReduce, BigTable and Spanner systems, protocol buffers, LevelDB, systems infrastructure for statistical machine translation, and a variety of internal and external libraries and developer tools. He is currently working on large-scale distributed systems for machine learning. Jeff is a Fellow of the ACM, a Fellow of the AAAS, a member of the U.S. National Academy of Engineering, and a recipient of the Mark Weiser Award and the ACM-Infosys Foundation Award in the Computing Sciences.

February 26, 2015

UW CSE: Reaching more students than ever and expanding opportunities for women in computer science

14x growth in introductory course enrollment at UW CSEHere at UW CSE, we are experiencing record interest in our undergraduate major and record enrollments in our introductory courses. This explosion of interest is happening across the country, but UW is doing particularly well among a key demographic underrepresented in the field: women.

When principal lecturer Stuart Reges attended a recent meeting organized by the National Center for Women & Information Technology, he talked about the tremendous growth of student interest in computer science. He shared UW CSE’s enrollment data to illustrate his point: around 2,800 students per year enroll in our first intro course – representing nearly half of the freshman class – and around 1,800 students per year in our second course. These two courses alone account for about 1.6 percent of all undergraduate student units taught on UW’s Seattle campus.

Building on what is already a good-news story, UW CSE is also seeing record percentages of women taking our introductory courses and pursuing our undergraduate major. The 2013-14 Taulbee Survey found that, nationally, less than 15 percent of undergraduate computer science degrees were granted to women.  At the UW, 30% of bachelors degrees in the most recent year were granted to women. And we expect this trend to continue: In our first intro course (CSE142), the class is currently 35% women.

A key element of our success has been our undergraduate TA program. CSE has 83 undergraduate TAs helping us to teach the 1,800 students currently enrolled currently in CSE142. Thirty-nine of those TAs are women; at 47 percent, this is the highest concentration of women we have seen in the last 10 years. Seeing young women a year ahead thriving in the field provides the best possible encouragement!

There is more work to be done, but we are proud of the way our commitment to diversity in computer science is helping us to lead the nation in engaging more women in the field!

View our video about the explosive growth in student participation in CSE’s intro courses here.

Learn more about the steps UW CSE is taking to broaden participation in the field here.

February 26, 2015

Seattle Business: “Seattle area tech leaders ask state to allocate money for a new computer science building”

20070405_uwcse_001Seattle Business writes:

A who’s who of 23 Seattle area leaders including executives from F5, Facebook, Google, Amazon, Microsoft, Redfin, Concur, Zillow and Apptio sent a letter today to the Washington State Legislature in support of a $40 million capital appropriation for a downpayment on a second building for UW’s department of  Computer Science and Engineering. The remainder of the money required to build the $110 million, 130,000 square-foot building would come from private sources.

“Ed Lazowska, the Bill & Melinda Gates Chair in Computer Science & Engineering, who played a key role in raising money for the existing Paul G. Allen Center for Computers Science & Engineering, is optimistic about UW’s prospects for raising private funds to supplement the state money for the second building. In the case of the Allen Center, completed in 2003, Lazowska says, the school received 200 gifts including three gifts of more than $5 million each, seven gifts of $1 million, and dozens of gifts of $100,000 or more.”

Read more here.

February 25, 2015

GeekWire: “Tech leaders lobby for $40M in state funding for new UW computer science building”

20070405_uwcse_001GeekWire writes:

“A group of 23 technology leaders in Washington state – including representatives of Microsoft, Amazon, Facebook, Google and other tech giants – are asking the state Legislature to approve $40 million in capital spending to help fund a new, $110 million University of Washington computer science building.

“The second building, proposed last fall, would allow for a doubling of enrollment in the University of Washington Computer Science & Engineering program. The department granted 315 degrees in June, its largest class ever, but the program is at capacity and was able to accept less than a third of the undergrads who applied in the last admissions period.”

Read more here.

February 25, 2015

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