Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

EECS in the News

New Computer Chips That See Data Will Enable Energy-Efficient Supercomputers

Drawing inspiration from how mammalian brains process sight, Prof. Wei Lu has found a way to mimic the functions of biological neural networks on a next-gen memristor chip. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Computer-Aided Design & VLSI  Lu, Wei  Memristor  

Neuromorphic Chips Offer Neural Networks That Actually Work Like the Brain

Engineers at the University of Michigan are onto something rather more brainlike, however, with help from a peculiar electrical component known as a memristor. They've developed a new "sparse coding" algorithm that uses grids of memristors to approximate the pattern recognition abilities of mammalian brains. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Computer-Aided Design & VLSI  Lu, Wei  Memristor  

U.S. Hospitals Not Immune to Crippling Cyber Attacks

In this article, Prof. Kevin Fu comments on the vulnerabilities that exist in hospital and healthcare systems and devices. The recent strike by the ransomware program called WannaCry demonstrates that these shortcomings. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Fu, Kevin  Health  Lab-Computer Engineering (CE Lab)  Medical Device Security  

Apple Just Acquired This Little-Known Artificial Intelligence Startup

CSE Prof. Michael Cafarella is a co-founder of the startup Lattice Data, which builds on statistical inference and machine learning to solve problems using dark data. Apple has acquired Lattice, which recently emerged from stealth mode, for $200M. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Cafarella, Michael  Databases and Data Mining  Lab-Software Systems  

Apple acquires AI company Lattice Data, a specialist in unstructured dark data, for $200M

CSE Prof. Michael Cafarella is a co-founder of the startup Lattice Data, which builds on statistical inference and machine learning to solve problems using dark data. Apple has acquired Lattice, which recently emerged from stealth mode, for $200M. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Cafarella, Michael  Databases and Data Mining  Lab-Software Systems  

Smartphone security hole: "Open port" backdoors are common

The College of Engineering reports on work by computer science security researchers which has revealed that so-called "open ports" are much more vulnerable to security breaches than previously thought. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Lab-Software Systems  Mao, Zhuoqing Morley  Mobile Computing  Networking, Operating Systems, and Distributed Systems  Security (Computing)  

Picting, not Writing, is the Literacy of Todays Youth

This blog post by Thurnau Prof. Elliot Soloway and his collaborator Cathie Norris looks at the disconnect between existing instructional materials (90% text) and how K-12 students communicate and consume (90% image-based), with ramifications for educational practices. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Lab-Interactive Systems  Soloway, Elliot  Technology for Education  

Wellman and Rajan on the Ethics of Automated Trading

In this audio interview at Algocracy and the Transhumanist Project, Prof. Michael Wellman and Business Administration Prof. Uday Rajan comment on the ethics of autonomous trading agents on financial markets. The discussion encompasses algorithmic trading, high frequency trading, market manipulation, the AI control problem, and more. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Artificial Intelligence  Lab-Artificial Intelligence  Wellman, Michael  

Hundreds of popular Android apps have open ports, making them prime targets for hacking

This article reports on the work done by CSE researchers Yunhan Jack Jia, Qi Alfred Chen, Yikai Lin, Chao Kong, and Prof. Z. Morley Mao in characterizing a widespread vulnerability in popular Android apps. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Graduate Students  Lab-Software Systems  Mao, Zhuoqing Morley  Mobile Computing  Networking, Operating Systems, and Distributed Systems  Security (Computing)  

Rackham Student Spotlight: Elizabeth Dreyer

Liz is a Rackham Merit Fellow and has always been intentional about her status as a first generation college student, wanting to find whatever ways to increase her chance for success as much as possible. Liz examines magneto-electric scattering, shining high-powered lasers and controlling input light to focus on the scattered light and determine whats happening to the material, particularly exploring what makes one material better than another. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Graduate Students  Lab-Optics and Photonics  Rand, Stephen  

Open Ports Create Backdoors in Millions of Smartphones

This article reports on work by CSE researchers who have characterized a widespread vulnerability in the software that runs on mobile devices which could allow attackers to steal contact information, security credentials, photos, and other sensitive data by using open ports to create backdoors. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Graduate Students  Lab-Software Systems  Mao, Zhuoqing Morley  Mobile Computing  Networking, Operating Systems, and Distributed Systems  Security (Computing)  

Hacking with Sound Waves

CSE researchers have demonstrated a new way of using sound to interfere with devices containing accelerometers, such as smartphones and self-driving cars. This presents a new avenue for hackers to use in compromising devices to steal information or disrupt communication. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Embedded Computing and Systems  Fu, Kevin  Internet of Things  Lab-Computer Engineering (CE Lab)  Lab-Software Systems  Security (Computing)  

An Obscure Flaw Creates Backdoors in Millions of Smartphones

CSE researchers have characterized a widespread vulnerability in the software that runs on mobile devices which could allow attackers to steal contact information, security credentials, photos, and other sensitive data, and also to install malware and to perform malicious code execution which could be used in large-scale attacks. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Graduate Students  Lab-Software Systems  Mao, Zhuoqing Morley  Mobile Computing  Networking, Operating Systems, and Distributed Systems  Security (Computing)  

Why India Needs A Paper Trail For Free And Fair Elections

This article in the Indian edition of the Huffington Post, references the work that Prof. J. Alex Halderman and his collaborators did in 2010 to demonstrate vulnerabilities in India's "tamper-proof" electronic voting machines. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Digital Democracy  Halderman, J. Alex  Lab-Software Systems  Security (Computing)  

Need a job? How about engineering a driverless car?

As Michigan accelerates toward leadership in the emerging driverless car technology, industry experts say its workforce needs to catch up. Gov. Rick Snyder signed legislation in December allowing the public to buy and use fully self-driving cars when they are available. Jessy Grizzle, the director of Michigan Robotics, said the problem of finding talent in self-driving cars lies in the lack of integrated capability to develop the industry. But that is also where the solution lies. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Autonomous Vehicles   Grizzle, Jessy  

University researchers develop ultra-thin silver film to improve touch-screen technology

Prof. Jay Guo's research team succeeded in creating a tarnish-proof silver film whose properties allow for various uses such as high-tech screens. The teams paper, published last Monday, details the films versatility. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Electronic devices  Flexible electronics  Guo, L. Jay  Lab-Optics and Photonics  

Michigan Allots $87 Million to Replace Flints Tainted Water Pipes

Prof. Jacob Abernethy collaborated with Flint officials and colleagues at UM Flint on a study last year that analyzed the Flint water system and the undertaking required to identify and replace lead pipes in homes. He said that the state's just-announced plan for finishing the replacement of thousands of targeted lead pipes in three years seemed possible with enough money and resources. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Abernethy, Jake  Big Data  Lab-Artificial Intelligence  

The next cyberattack could render your anti-virus and encryption software useless

Researchers including Prof. Kevin Fu and CSE graduate student Timothy Trippel have demonstrated a new way of using sound to interfere with devices containing accelerometers, such as smartphones. This presents a new avenue for hackers to use in compromising devices to steal information or disrupt communication. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Fu, Kevin  Lab-Computer Engineering (CE Lab)  Lab-Software Systems  Security (Computing)  

Screens of the future could be made with transparent silver

Prof. Jay Guo just published new research in the journal Advanced Materials that suggests using a seven-nanometer-thick film made of silver could replace indium tin oxide as a transparent conductive surface for touch screens. Indium is growing more expensive as its use increases, so this could be a valuable alternative. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Flexible electronics  Guo, L. Jay  Lab-Optics and Photonics  

University presidents: Prepare for global economy

President Mark Schlissel writes with two other Michigan university presidents on the need to prepare graduates to compete in the global market. The article mentions ECE professor Kamal Sarabandi, a world leader in radar sensing whose work is used by NASA and other government agencies. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Lab-Radiation (RADLAB)  Remote Sensing  Sarabandi, Kamal  

Smartphone Accelerometers Can Be Fooled by Sound Waves

This article features work done by Prof. Kevin Fu and his collaborators in which they demonstrate a way to take control of or influence devices such as smartphones through the use of sound waves. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Embedded Computing and Systems  Fu, Kevin  Internet of Things  Lab-Computer Engineering (CE Lab)  Lab-Software Systems  Security (Computing)  

Optical Magnetism: Photons induce high levels of magnetism in optical materials

Prof. Steve Rand's group at the MURI Center for Dynamic Magneto-Optics (DYNAMO) have both observed and explained the presence of photon-induced magnetic dipole (MD) scattering (optical magnetism) in certain crystalline materials that is just as intense as ordinary Rayleigh scattering. The experiments show for the first time an alternative way of controlling magnetic properties of materials with light. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Lab-Optics and Photonics  Metamaterials  Optics and Photonics  Rand, Stephen  

AI Scientists Gather to Plot Doomsday Scenarios (and Solutions)

Michael Wellman, Lynn A. Conway Professor of Computer Science and Engineering, was part of a workshop aimed at worst-possible adverse outcome AI scenarios and how to prevent them. One of the topics discussed was Prof. Wellman's stock market manipulation scenario. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Artificial Intelligence  Lab-Artificial Intelligence  Wellman, Michael  

Will artificial intelligence ever actually match up to the human brain?

This article asks the question: How long will it be until we have a general artificial intelligence, rathe than silos of narrow, specific AIs? John Laird, the John L. Tishman Professor of Engineering, comments in the article on the challenges involved in identifying capabilities and integrating them together into a general AI. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Artificial Intelligence  Lab-Artificial Intelligence  Laird, John  

Professor Who Urged an Election Recount Thinks Trump Won, but Voting Integrity Still Concerns Him

This article in the Chronicle of Higher Education includes a Q and A with Prof. J. Alex Halderman on the 2016 presidential election recount and on the challenges ahead for election integrity. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Digital Democracy  Halderman, J. Alex  Lab-Software Systems  Security (Computing)  

Clinc Raises Venture Capital Round of $6.3 million

Clinc, the artificial-intelligence startup founded by CSE Profs. Jason Mars and Lingjia Tang, announced Wednesday morning that it has raised a funding round of $6.3 million. The company's open-source intelligent assistant and machine learning research platform is involved in research programs with Intel Corp., IBM Corp. and the National Science Foundation. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Lab-Artificial Intelligence  Mars, Jason  Tang, Lingjia  

Why Some Apps Use Fake Progress Bars

School of Information Professor Eytan Adar is quoted in this article about a technique he calls "benevolent deception" which can increase user's trust in a system. Later in the article, he lays out guidelines for using benevolent deception. Prof. Adar also has an appointment in CSE. [Full Story]

VIDEO: U-M to begin experimenting with bird-inspired robot

The University of Michigan will begin experimenting with the capabilities of a robot inspired by a flightless bird. With two legs, backward facing knee-like joints and a short torso, researchers note that it may remind people a bit of an ostrich. Named CASSIE, the robot comes from Agility Robotics, a startup spun out of Oregon State University. U-M is one of the first organizations to begin testing out CASSIE. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Grizzle, Jessy  Robotics  

Memristor Research Highlights Neuromorphic Device Future

Professor Wei Lu is leading an effort to make neuromorphic processor technology a reality. Lus group is focusing on the memristors a two-terminal device that essentially is a resistor with memory that retain its stored data even when turned off that can act like synapses to build computers that can act like the human brain and drive machine learning. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Artificial Intelligence  Brain  Lu, Wei  Memristor  

Inside the Recount

This story provides an in-depth, inside view of how the recount effort for the 2016 presidential election - of which Prof. J. Alex Halderman was a primary participant - was sparked, how it came to focus on three states, what the results showed, and what we can learn from it all. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Digital Democracy  Halderman, J. Alex  Lab-Software Systems  Security (Computing)  

Our Voting System Is Hackable by Foreign Powers

This article reviews the vulnerabilities that currently exist in our voting system. It references Prof. J. Alex Halderman, who has stated that he and his students could have changed the results of the November election. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Digital Democracy  Halderman, J. Alex  Lab-Software Systems  Security (Computing)  

How Powerful AI Technology Can Lead to Unforeseen Disasters

This article reports on a panel discussion on AI ethics and education hosted by the Future of Life Institute. Panelist Prof. Benjamin Kuipers notes that the small decisions that robots make on their own can cause trouble because human programmers may fail to take all of a robot's possible choices into account. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Artificial Intelligence  Kuipers, Benjamin  Lab-Artificial Intelligence  Robotics  

Innovation is for Finishers

Many researchers are hoping startups will help get their ideas to the marketplace and universities are trying to help. Prof. Stephen Forrest, himself the founder of multiple companies, has helped colleagues get their own projects off the ground through his support for the Michigan Venture Center. Former CSE chair Farnam Jahanian also shares experiences with his founding of Arbor Networks. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Entrepreneurship  Forrest, Stephen  Networking, Operating Systems, and Distributed Systems  Optics and Photonics  

The 2016 US Election Wasnt Hacked, but the 2020 Election Could Be

Prof. Alex Halderman is quoted in this article which reports on the recent Chaos Communication Congress. "Developing an attack for one of these machines is not terribly difficult," says Prof. Halderman. "I and others have done it again and again in the laboratory. All you need to do is buy one government surplus on eBay to test it out." [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Digital Democracy  Halderman, J. Alex  Lab-Software Systems  Security (Computing)  

Poker Is the Latest Game to Fold Against Artificial Intelligence

Prof. Michael Wellman is quoted in this article on new AI systems that are able to best top-level human opponents in games of poker. "What's really new for such a complex game is being able to effectively compute the action to take in each situation as it is encountered, rather than having to work through a simplified form of the entire tree of game possibilities offline," says Prof. Wellman. Prof. Wellman is also quoted on the same subject in this article in Wired. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Artificial Intelligence  Lab-Artificial Intelligence  Wellman, Michael  

Prof. Kevin Fu to deliver endowed Dr. Dwight Harken Memorial Lecture on medical device security

Prof. Kevin Fu has been selected to give the annual Dwight E. Harken Lecture during the AAMI 2017 Conference & Expo in Austin, TX, June 912. Prof. Fu directs the Archimedes Center for Medical Device Security and the Security and Privacy Research Group at Michigan and is also CEO and chief scientist of Virta Labs, Inc. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Fu, Kevin  Lab-Computer Engineering (CE Lab)  Medical Device Security  Security (Computing)  

Five things that got broken at the oldest hacking event in the world

Chaos Communications Congress is the world's oldest hacker conference, and Europe's largest. Every year, thousands of hackers gather in Hamburg to share stories, trade tips and discuss the political, social and cultural ramifications of technology. This story quotes Prof. J. Alex Halderman, who with his student Matt Bernhard, has studied the security of the past US presidential election. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Digital Democracy  Halderman, J. Alex  Lab-Software Systems  Security (Computing)  

U-M researchers create helpful tool for Flint residents during ongoing water crisis

This video and text news item describes MyWater-Flint, the app and website designed by UM researchers to help Flint residents with data about the ongoing water crisis. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Abernethy, Jake  Big Data  Lab-Artificial Intelligence  Machine Learning  

Trump Allowed to Join Fight Against Pennsylvania Recount

A battle over whether or not a recount of ballots cast in Pennsylvania during the recent presidential campaign is taking place. In the case made for a recount, hackers could have easily infected Pennsylvanias voting machines with malware designed to lay dormant for weeks, pop up on Election Day and then erase itself without a trace, according to Prof. J. Alex Halderman. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Digital Democracy  Halderman, J. Alex  Lab-Software Systems  Security (Computing)  

Vote Recount Push Advances, but Reversing Trumps Win Is Unlikely

This article in the New York Times reports on the uneven progress toward recounts in three key states for the recent presidential election. Led by Green Party candidate Jill Stein, the recounts were inspired by a call from leading security experts, including Prof. J. Alex Halderman. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Digital Democracy  Halderman, J. Alex  Lab-Software Systems  Security (Computing)  

Want to Know if the Election was Hacked? Look at the Ballots

In this post, Prof. J. Alex Halderman sets the record straight regarding what he and other leading election security experts have actually been saying to the Clinton campaign and everyone else whos willing to listen. He describes a situation where malware could be a factor in the vote totals during the presidential election. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Digital Democracy  Halderman, J. Alex  Lab-Software Systems  Security (Computing)  

Trump election: Activists call for recount in battleground states

The BBC reports on the call by leading computer scientists, including Prof. J. Alex Halderman, for a recount of votes in the presidential election in three swing states. Their analysis shows that Clinton performed worse in counties that relied on electronic voting machines compared to paper ballots and optical scanners. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Digital Democracy  Halderman, J. Alex  Lab-Software Systems  Security (Computing)  

Computer scientists urge Clinton campaign to challenge election results

CNN reports that a group of top computer scientists, including Prof. J. Alex Halderman, have urged Hillary Clinton's campaign to call for a recount of vote totals in Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania. The computer scientists believe they have found evidence that vote totals in the three states could have been manipulated or hacked and presented their findings to top Clinton aides on a call last Thursday. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Digital Democracy  Halderman, J. Alex  Lab-Software Systems  Security (Computing)  

Experts Urge Clinton Campaign to Challenge Election Results in 3 Swing States

Leading computer security experts with an interest in election integrity, including Prof. J. Alex Halerman, have called for a recount of the votes cast in the presidential election in three key swing states. They believe they have found evidence that results in Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania may have been manipulated. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Digital Democracy  Halderman, J. Alex  Lab-Software Systems  Security (Computing)  

Vulnerable connected devices a matter of "homeland security"

This article describes the security ramifications of unprotected IoT devices such as internet-connected cameras, video recorders on the larger Internet. It quotes Prof. Kevin Fu on the effort that would be required to secure this new ecosystem. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Fu, Kevin  Internet of Things  Lab-Computer Engineering (CE Lab)  Security (Computing)  

After Dyn cyberattack, lawmakers seek best path forward

In a hearing hosted by the House Energy and Commerce Committee, University of Michigan professor Kevin Fu, Level 3 Communications Chief Security Officer Dale Drew and computer security luminary Bruce Schneier briefed Congress on the challenges posed by insecure internet-connected devices and whether they believe the government can make a difference. This article provides a summary of the proceedings. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Fu, Kevin  Lab-Computer Engineering (CE Lab)  Security (Computing)  

How You Speak To Siri & Alexa Matters More Than You Think Here's Why

Prof. Rada Mihalcea is quoted in this story about sexism and today's virtual assistants such as Amazon's Alexa, Apple's Siri and Microsoft's Cortana. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Lab-Artificial Intelligence  Mihalcea, Rada  Women in Computing  

Regulate cybersecurity or expect a disaster, experts warn Congress

The U.S. government must demand that all internet-connected devices have built-in security, according to experts including Prof. Kevin Fu who warned Congress that the country could soon face a disastrous, lethal cyberattack. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Fu, Kevin  Internet of Things  Lab-Computer Engineering (CE Lab)  Security (Computing)  

Provost and former CSE Assoc. Chair Martha Pollack named president at Cornell University

Former Associate Chair of CSE and Dean of the School of Information Martha Pollack has been named President of Cornell University. Our congratulations! [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Pollack, Martha  

The Network Standard Used in Cars Is Wide Open to Attack

As automobiles grow increasingly computerized, the security of the network for in-vehicle communication is a growing security concern. New research by Prof. Kang G. Shin and graduate student Kyong-Tak Cho demonstrates that the controller area network (CAN) protocol implemented by in-vehicle networks has a new and potentially quite dangerous vulnerability. [Full Story]

Related Topics:  Graduate Students  Lab-Software Systems  Networking, Operating Systems, and Distributed Systems  Security (Computing)  Shin, Kang G.  

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