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Allen School team earns Best Overall Winner in the Proof of Concept Category in the 2022 IEEE Connecting the Unconnected Challenge

Four volunteers from the Seattle Connectivity Lab install a rooftop station with city scape and cloudy sky in back drop. Two years of conducting business, school, and socialization online during the COVID pandemic exposed the extent to which unequal access and inadequate connectivity is a barrier for people in both rural and urban communities. For a team led by Allen School professor Kurtis Heimerl, closing the gap in access to internet connectivity had been the focus of earlier research in far-off locales. With the pandemic highlighting connectivity challenges closer to home, the researchers turned their focus to what they… Read more →
December 22, 2022

Data science and decentralization: Bloomberg Ph.D. Fellowship recipient Suchin Gururangan makes large language models more manageable to advance social good

Suchin Gururangan, wearing a blue shirt, smiles in front of a blurred, wooded background. Starting in high school, Suchin Gururangan felt the pull of research. A summer internship piqued his curiosity. Projects in his university’s neuroscience lab fed it further.  But “life happens,” as he put it, and graduate school took a backseat for the time being. He jumped into industry, first in venture capital, then in cybersecurity. Following graduation from the University of Chicago, he moved to the Boston area. Even after landing in Seattle to join a startup, the former researcher still… Read more →
December 21, 2022

‘It’s extremely important for future students to picture themselves in computing’: Allen School celebrates Computer Science Education Week

Five people stand around a demo table with a laptop and assorted wires attached to a small square device off to the side. Three people are running the demo from one side of the table; one of the two guests on the opposite side, facing the laptop, is reaching out towards the device. The laptop screen displays simple graphics suggesting some kind of video game. There are little piles of purple tubes of chapstick and stickers branded with the Allen School logo. Each December, the Allen School invites prospective students and families to join us for a week-long celebration of Computer Science Education Week, a nationwide event that aims to inspire students, advance equity, and honor those who are contributing to the field and to society. After being compelled to go fully virtual due to the pandemic in 2020 and 2021, the school’s Diversity & Access Team was thrilled to offer a hybrid celebration this year.  Throughout the week, prospective students… Read more →
December 20, 2022

Allen School Ph.D. students Kyle Johnson and Lisa Orii receive Quad Fellowships

Kyle Johnson, wearing a dark blue tie, a light blue shirt and a grey suit jacket, smiles in front of a white background. To the right, Lisa Orii, wearing a white shirt and a black suit jacket, smiles in front of a white brick background.
Kyle Johnson (left) and Lisa Orii were named to the inaugural class of Quad Fellows
The Allen School’s Kyle Johnson and Lisa Orii have been named to the first cohort of recipients of the Quad Fellowship, a scholarship program that recognizes outstanding STEM graduate students from Australia, India, Japan and the United States.  The inaugural 100-member class includes students specializing in a number of disciplines across science, technology, mathematics and engineering. Operated and administered by Schmidt Futures, the Quad… Read more →
December 19, 2022

Lisa Orii named one of MIT Technology Review’s Innovators Under 35 Japan for advancing human-centered technologies to uplift vulnerable communities

Lisa Orii smiles in front of a white brick background while wearing a black blazer and a white shirt. When Allen School Ph.D. student Lisa Orii was in high school, she became involved with the work of Parasaiyo, a Japanese nonprofit that supports foster children in the Philippines in pursuing higher education. She began making annual visits to a foster home there over the summer, developing a bond with the children and staff. Between her trips, she helped organize related fundraising events back in her native Japan.  Later, as an undergraduate at Wellesley College, Orii began to think… Read more →
December 9, 2022

University of Washington and Microsoft study of online search activity during the pandemic offers a new window into the second-level digital divide

A school-aged girl is pictured from behind, in the right of the frame, seated at a table in a brightly lit room with a notebook viewing a person on a laptop screen. The girl has long hair pulled into a ponytail with a pink elastic band and a decorative headband visible behind her left ear and is wearing a pink hooded sweatshirt.
Photo by Giovanni Gagliardi on Unsplash
In the spring of 2020, schools and offices across the nation closed their doors en masse to in-person learning and working, restaurants and retail stores began extolling the virtues of curbside dining and delivery, and Zoom became a household name. In the midst of the global health emergency caused by the emergence of COVID-19, many of the services and activities people rely on as part of their daily lives — from doctors’ appointments to… Read more →
December 9, 2022

Family matters: For the Winston siblings, the intersection of software engineering and neuroscience research is relatively inspiring at the UW

Group photo of the five Winston siblings wearing business attire and name tags on lanyards around their necks, standing side-by-side in front of a metal railing with buildings of various styles of stone, metal and glass in downtown Pittsburgh in the background.
The Winston siblings pose for a family photo in downtown Pitttsburgh during the ICSE 2022 conference (from left): Caleb, Cailin, Cleah, Claris and Chloe
Back in May, a group of five student researchers advised by Allen School professors Rajesh Rao and René Just disembarked in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania for the 44th International Conference on Software Engineering. They had traveled to ICSE 2022 from Seattle to present a paper describing a methodology they had developed at the University of Washington for… Read more →
December 7, 2022

Balloons, The Tower of Terror and Fibonacci sequences: How the UW programming team qualified for the ICPC World Finals

Nathan Akkaraphab, Milin Kodnongbua, and Phawin Prongpaophan stand in front of a white banner while holding a placard with the words, the University of Washington, on the front. Kodnongbua holds mulitcolored balloons.
The University of Washington team at the ICPC North America Championship, from left: Nathan Akkaraphab, Milin Kodnongbua, and Phawin Prongpaophan.
By the end, colors filled the room.  Blues, yellows, pinks and reds, all bobbing about, to and fro. When the clacking stopped, the popping began. And the trio of Allen School students, triumphant, smiled.  “Team communication and coordination is the key to success,” said their bespectacled coach, who was watching from afar. “It’s a bonding experience.”  The International Collegiate Programming Read more →
December 6, 2022

The sound of touch: UW and Microsoft researchers earn ISS 10-year Impact Award for advancing innovative interaction technique via on-body sensing

Person sliding fingertip with small sensor device across their forearm in front of a computer screen showing a selection of menu icons superimposed on each other horizontally, with the green and white phone icon selected Nearly a decade ago, well before mixed reality and the metaverse went mainstream, a team of researchers from the University of Washington’s UbiComp Lab and Microsoft Research were making noise within the human-computer interaction community with a novel approach to on-body sensing. Their technique, which leveraged transdermal ultrasound signals, turned the human body into an input surface for pressure-aware continuous touch sensing and gesture recognition without requiring extensive, not to mention expensive, instrumentation. Last week, that same team collected the… Read more →
December 2, 2022

A winning combination: Allen School recruits nine new faculty with expertise in computational neuroscience, machine learning, quantum computing, and more

Hand silhouetted against the sun, giving the "dubs up" symbol, with ring and middle finger crossed in between pinky and index finger to resemble the letter "W," against a purple background When it comes to recruiting at the University of Washington, the latest promising commits to the Husky football team tend to grab most of the headlines. Here in the Allen School, we’re pursuing our own version of “Purple Reign” on a different playing field: the intense competition that is faculty recruiting in computer science and computer engineering.  The results of the 2022 season are in, and the Allen School scored nine outstanding educators and researchers who are rising stars in… Read more →
December 1, 2022

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