March 20, Vol. 24, No. 34                         

CMU Is No. 1 in Computer Science, Again     
Carnegie Mellon's School of Computer Science (SCS) has retained its number one standing in this year's graduate school rankings by U.S. News & World Report. SCS ranked atop the charts in 2010, the last time the publication ranked schools in computer science. Tying CMU for the top spot
this year were MIT, Stanford and Cal-Berkeley.

In specialty programs CMU ranked 1st in programming language, 2nd in artificial intelligence, 4th in systems and 5th in theory.

In other top 20 rankings, CMU ranked 5th in engineering, 9th in statistics, and 10th (part-time MBA) and 18th (full-time MBA) in business.

In top 10 specialty engineering rankings CMU was 4th in computer engineering, 7th in environmental engineering, 8th in electrical engineering, 10th in civil engineering and 10th in mechanical engineering.

In top 10 specialty business rankings CMU was 2nd in information systems, 2nd in production/operations management, and 4th in supply chain/logistics.

There are no new U.S. News & World Report rankings this year for programs in the College of Fine Arts and Heinz College. Not all graduate programs are ranked annually.

Learn more about CMU's rankings.
See U.S. News &  World's Report's "Best Grad Schools."

Breathing New Life into Asthma Therapies      
So many variables can contribute to shortness of breath that no person can keep them all straight. But a computer program, capable of tracking more than 100 clinical variables for almost 400 people, has shown it can identify various subtypes of asthma, which perhaps could lead to targeted, more effective treatments.

Wei Wu, a Carnegie Mellon computational biologist who led the analysis of patient data from the federally funded Severe Asthma Research Program, said many of the patient clusters identified by the computational methods are consistent with subtypes already recognized by clinicians. But the analysis also identified clusters of patients that suggest new subtypes, including one in which frequent, severe asthma symptoms appear to be associated with poor quality of life or depression in some obese women.

"The ultimate goal is to develop treatments that are based on the biological mechanisms underlying each cluster of patients, rather than simply treating the symptoms," said Wu, an associate research professor in the Lane Center for Computational Biology.

To that end, she and her collaborators now seek to analyze genetic and genomic factors associated with each of the patient clusters, which promises to identify specific targets for drug treatments.

Learn more about Wu's work.

Analyzing Anonymous       
The international network "Anonymous" has become well known for digitally and physically protesting governments, religious groups and corporations.

Carnegie Mellon's Center for the Arts in Society (CAS) will host Gabriella Coleman for a lecture analyzing Anonymous' power and strategies. Coleman, the Wolfe Chair in Scientific and Technological Literacy at McGill University, will discuss "Anonymous and the Craftiness of Craft and the Trickiness of Trickery." She will evaluate how its activities have magnified issues and boosted existing movements.

Coleman will speak at 4:30 p.m., Monday, March 24 in Porter Hall 100.

"Professor Coleman's study of Anonymous - as well as her recent book, 'Coding Freedom: the Ethics and Aesthetics of Hacking' - is of exceptional interest to those of us who've taken part in the CAS's media initiative," said Paul Eiss, CAS director. "Her work demonstrates the importance of moving beyond a purely technological understanding of our digital age, by analyzing the use of new technologies in social, ethical, aesthetic and, especially, political terms." 

Read more about the upcoming lecture.

Buhl Lecture: "One Molecule at a Time" 
Carlos Bustamante, best known for his pivotal work using laser tweezers to measure the forces in DNA, will present Carnegie Mellon's annual Buhl Lecture at 4:30 p.m., Tuesday, March 25 in the Mellon Institute Auditorium. His lecture, "Biochemistry and Biophysics One Molecule at a Time: When Less is More," is free and open to the public.

Within all living cells is a network of complex molecular machines that carry out the functions essential for survival. Understanding these physical forces is key to understanding how cells work.

Bustamante, the Raymond and Beverly Sackler Chair of Physics at the University of California, Berkeley, has developed novel methods that use magnetic beads, atomic force microscopes and laser tweezers to measure and manipulate the forces within DNA and other macromolecules.

Learn more about Bustamante.

See something? Say something. Help ensure the safety and well-being of the CMU community:
University Police: 412-268-2323
Ethics Hotline: 1-877-700-7050

Calendar Highlights 

UPDATE: Campus Parking Discussion 

 Personal Mention

Brian Junker
Andrew Gellman
Alex Hills
Kathy Newman
Tom Shen

Justine Cassell and Tom Mitchell
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