Pathak wins Clark Medal; new IDSS MicroMasters, PhD progra ms; engineering speedskates

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Massachusetts Institute of Technology
April 26, 2018

MIT News: around campus


A weekly digest of the Institute’s community news



Parag Pathak wins John Bates Clark Medal


MIT economist lauded for work on education, market-design mechanisms.




Institute for Data, Systems, and Society to launch new MicroMasters and PhD programs


Interdisciplinary doctoral program in statistics and online MicroMasters program in statistics and data science begin this fall.




On the cutting edge


Olympic medalist and MIT senior Jordan Malone uses his engineering skills to enhance the sport of speedskating.




Vinod Vaikuntanathan wins Edgerton Faculty Award


Electrical Engineering and Computer Science faculty member is honored for his innovative work in cybersecurity and his engaging teaching style.




Playwrights Lab gives young writers a professional experience


MIT Music and Theater Arts lab provides students with a chance to workshop scripts with seasoned actors and directors in a professional setting.




Featured video: Making music with the Chorallaries of MIT


For students in MIT's oldest co-ed a capella group, blending voices provides a creative outlet and a chance to share their love of song.



In the Media



CBS News correspondent Scott Pelley explores the MIT Media Lab for 60 Minutes, highlighting several of its projects. “The lab is a six-story tower of Babel where 230 grad students speak languages of art, engineering, biology, physics and computer coding,” says Pelley, “all translated into innovation.”




WBUR's Carey Goldberg profiles Prof. Feng Zhang, a “sunny science superstar” whose discoveries include major advances in optogenetics and CRISPR. "Feng is a one-in-a-generation scientist who sees connections that the rest of us have overlooked," says Prof. Robert Desimone, director of the McGovern Institute for Brain Research at MIT.




In a VICE News Tonight climate segment, MIT postdocs Volodymyr Koman and Seon-Yeong Kwak explain their technique for making plants glow in the dark to a first-grade class in Boston. Following a demonstration mixing plant glucose with the specialized nanoparticles, one student exclaims in disbelief, “no battery or anything!”



research & innovation



How to bend and stretch a diamond


The brittle material can turn flexible when made into ultrafine needles, researchers find.




Building AI systems that make fair decisions


Harini Suresh, a PhD student at MIT CSAIL, studies how to make machine learning algorithms more understandable and less biased.




Integrating optical components into existing chip designs


Technique would allow addition of optical communication components to existing chips with little modification of their designs.




Machine-learning system processes sounds like humans do


Neuroscientists train a deep neural network to analyze speech and music.



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