2016

March 2016

Emeritus Professor Martin E. Hellman and former Sun Microsystems Chief Security Officer Whitfield Diffie, have been named recipients of the 2015 ACM A.M. Turing Award for critical contributions to modern cryptography. The ability for two parties to communicate privately over a secure channel is fundamental for billions of people around the world. On a daily basis, individuals establish secure online connections with banks, e-commerce sites, email servers and the cloud. Diffie and Hellman's groundbreaking 1976 paper, "New Directions in Cryptography," introduced the ideas of public-key cryptography and digital signatures, which are the foundation for most regularly-used security protocols on the Internet today. The Diffie-Hellman Protocol protects daily Internet communications and trillions of dollars in financial transactions.

The ACM Turing Award, often referred to as the "Nobel Prize of Computing," carries a $1 million prize with financial support provided by Google, Inc. It is named for Alan M. Turing, the British mathematician who articulated the mathematical foundation and limits of computing and who was a key contributor to the Allied cryptoanalysis of the German Enigma cipher during World War II.

"Today, the subject of encryption dominates the media, is viewed as a matter of national security, impacts government-private sector relations, and attracts billions of dollars in research and development," said ACM President Alexander L. Wolf. "In 1976, Diffie and Hellman imagined a future where people would regularly communicate through electronic networks and be vulnerable to having their communications stolen or altered. Now, after nearly 40 years, we see that their forecasts were remarkably prescient."

Please join us in congratulating Marty for this outstanding recognition of his public key cryptography.


 

Excerpts from the ACM Press Release

Read Stanford Report article

 

February 2016

Jonathan Fan selected as a 2016 Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow in Physics. The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation is pleased to announce the selection of 126 outstanding U.S. and Canadian researchers as recipients of the 2016 Sloan Research Fellowships. Awarded annually since 1955, the fellowships honor early-career scientists and scholars whose achievements and potential identify them as rising stars, the next generation of scientific leaders.

"Getting early-career support can be a make-or-break moment for a young scholar," said Paul L. Joskow, President of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. "In an increasingly competitive academic environment, it can be difficult to stand out, even when your work is first rate. The Sloan Research Fellowships have become an unmistakable marker of quality among researchers. Fellows represent the best-of-the-best among young scientists."

Awarded in eight scientific and technical fields—chemistry, computer science, economics, mathematics, computational and evolutionary molecular biology, neuroscience, ocean sciences, and physics—the Sloan Research Fellowships are awarded in close coordination with the scientific community. Candidates must be nominated by their fellow scientists and winning fellows are selected by an independent panel of senior scholars on the basis of a candidate's independent research accomplishments, creativity, and potential to become a leader in his or her field.

 

Congratulations to Jonathan for this outstanding achievement!

 

The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation is a philanthropic, not-for-profit grant making institution based in New York City. Established in 1934 by Alfred Pritchard Sloan Jr., then-President and Chief Executive Officer of the General Motors Corporation, the Foundation makes grants in support of original research and education in science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and economics. www.sloan.org

Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Press Release

February 2016

This month, five staff members were recognized through the Staff Gift Card Program. Each received a $50 Visa card.

The program provides a forum for recognizing staff contributions that are above and beyond their everyday roles. Any staff, faculty or student may nominate a staff member for consideration.

Congratulations to this month's awardees, listed below with excerpts from the submissions.

 

Kenny Green, Facilities Manager, EE

  • "His professionalism and upbeat personality are very much appreciated."
  • "Kenny's got us covered!"

Rachelle Mozeleski, Web Content Manager, EE

  • "Her ability to work with a variety of people to find solutions is very impressive."
  • "Creative and enthusiastic; she always brings a smile and positive attitude."

Denise Murphy, Faculty Affairs and Staffing Manager, EE

  • "She is extremely knowledgable with all things faculty affairs, and always available to answer questions."
  • "Denise makes EE staff feel comfortable, appreciated and valued."

Helen Niu, Administrative Associate, EE

  • "Highly capable and dedicated, Helen is a pleasure to work with."
  • "She handles complicated procedures with efficiency and ease."

Lisa Sickorez, Financial Officer, EE

  • "She did a fantastic job transitioning EE to a new expense system."
  • "Lisa's extensive knowledge and patience are greatly appreciated!"

The Staff Gift Card Bonus Program is sponsored by the School of Engineering. Each year, the EE department receives several gift cards to distribute to staff members who are recognized for going above and beyond their role. Each month, staff are chosen from nominations received from faculty, students, and staff. Past nominations are eligible for future months. Nominate a deserving staff person today!


Be sure to recognize the staff member, or members, that help in your accomplishments!

February 2016

Dan Boneh has been elected to the National Academy of Engineering with the citation, "For contributions to the theory and practice of cryptography and computer security."

Election to the National Academy of Engineering is among the highest professional distinctions accorded to an engineer. Academy membership honors those who have made outstanding contributions to "engineering research, practice, or education, including, where appropriate, significant contributions to the engineering literature," and to "the pioneering of new and developing fields of technology, making major advancements in traditional fields of engineering, or developing/implementing innovative approaches to engineering education."

A professor in EE and CS, Boneh heads the applied cryptography group. His research focuses on applications of cryptography to computer security. His focus is on building security mechanisms that are easy to use and deploy. He has developed new mechanisms for improving web security, file system security, and copyright protection. He contributed to the security and performance of the RSA cryptosystem and contributed to the study of cryptographic watermarking.

Professor Boneh is part of the Stanford Cyber Initiative. In 2014, Professor Boneh received the ACM-Infosys Foundation Award in the Computing Sciences.

Please join us in congratulating Dan Boneh for this well-deserved recognition of his profound contributions and leadership.

 

Full NAE press release.

January 2016

The Department of Electrical Engineering is pleased to announce that Gordon Wetzstein has received the National Science Foundation (NSF) Faculty Early Career Development Award (CAREER). Professor Wetzstein's award is entitled "CAREER: Optimizing Computational Range and Velocity Imaging."

Gordon Wetzstein, an assistant professor of electrical engineering and by courtesy, computer science, was awarded a five-year grant to develop optimized hardware and software for emerging computational range and velocity imaging.

His research anticipates insights and contributions to advance knowledge and gain an understanding of the limits of time-resolved computational imaging and how to practically achieve them. The developed computational imaging systems and mathematical models are expected to provide fundamentally new building blocks for a diversity of applications in computer and machine vision, medical imaging, microscopy, scientific imaging, remote sensing, defense, and robotics.

The Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program is a Foundation-wide activity that offers the National Science Foundation's most prestigious awards in support of junior faculty who exemplify the role of teacher-scholars through outstanding research, excellent education and the integration of education and research within the context of the mission of their organizations. The intention of such activities is to build a firm foundation for a lifetime of leadership in integrating education and research.

 

Please join the department in congratulating Professor Wetzstein on this recognition of his work.

June 2016

Abbas El Gamal is the Hitachi America Professor in the School of Engineering and the Fortinet Founders Chair of the Department of Electrical Engineering. He has been awarded the 2016 IEEE Richard W. Hamming Medal. The award's citation reads, "for contributions to network multi-user information theory and for wide ranging impact on programmable circuit architectures."

IEEE Medals are the highest awards that the IEEE presents on behalf of the IEEE Board of Directors. The IEEE Richard W. Hamming Medal recognizes exceptional contributions to information sciences, systems, and technology. Established in 1986, the medal is named in honor of Dr. Richard W. Hamming, who had a central role in the development of computer and computing science, and whose many significant contributions in the area of information science include his error-correcting codes.

Professor El Gamal is a Life Fellow of IEEE and member of the NAE. He received the Claude E. Shannon Award in 2012.

Abbas El Gamal’s lasting contributions to information theory, wireless networks, field programmable gate arrays (FPGAs), and digital imaging have immensely impacted a wide variety of information technology applications critical in today’s society. His early work formed the basis for several new areas in multi-user information theory, paving the way to capacity results integral to today’s communications networks. He determined the capacity of the product of Gaussian broadcast channels and of deterministic interference channels leading to recent advances in multi-antenna and interference-limited wireless networks. Together with Thomas Cover, he established the first upper and lower bounds on the capacity of the three-node relay network. This work introduced the cut-set upper bound for networks, which is widely used in information theory today, as well as the compress-forward and decode-forward schemes, which continue to be the dominant relaying techniques. His recent work has involved the creation of coding schemes for sending multiple sources over noisy networks, and significant contributions to wireless networks through characterizing their optimal delay-throughput tradeoff and devising schemes for energy-efficient packet transmission scheduling. His book Network Information Theory (Cambridge Press, 2011) with Young-Han Kim provides the first unified and comprehensive coverage of the field. El Gamal’s contributions to hardware design include the development of integrated circuit fabrics and tools that significantly reduce design time and cost of systems used in computing, communication, and signal-processing applications. In 1986, he co-founded Actel, where he co-invented the routing architecture used in all commercial FPGAs today. He subsequently pioneered the use of FPGAs in teaching digital system design, which has become standard in all electrical engineering programs. (From IEEE Richard W. Hamming Medal Recipients)

The 2016 IEEE Honors Ceremony was held on Saturday, June 18, at Gotham Hall, New York, NY. Professor El Gamal's acceptance speech is timestamped at approximately 0:44:09. View IEEE Honors Ceremony PDF program.

Read more about the IEEE Richard W. Hamming Medal.

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