Professor Jodi Cranston, a Research Fellow of the Institute and a Professor in the Department of History of Art & Architecture, was awarded a Digital Art History Grant from the Samuel H. Kress Foundation. This prestigious grant will support the development of the “Mapping Titian” web portal and platform, which will serve as an archive and as an interpretative research and teaching tool by documenting and mapping one of the most fundamental concerns of the discipline of Art History: the interrelationship between an artwork and its changing historical context.
Focusing on the paintings executed by the Venetian Renaissance artist, Titian (ca. 1488-1576), the portal will include a searchable provenance index of his attributed pictures (totaling over 500 paintings) and will use geographic and non-geographic maps to interpret a historical network of artists, collectors, art dealers, travelers, and patrons through the geographic movement of these objects. Users — scholars and students alike — will be able to customize their experience by specifying the parameters of their search interests and by having the opportunity to create their own maps, as well as export user-selected bibliographies, related documents, and provenance entries. The “Mapping Titian” portal will effectively be a tool from which new research, discoveries, and experiences can be inspired, guided, and shared.
A secondary and important goal of the project will be the development of a mapping platform that could be leveraged by future users, including art institutions that could visualize the provenance of any artwork or group of artworks. Most museum websites currently share only minimal, if any, information regarding the provenance of an object. With the platform in place, museums could incorporate mapping functions to teach users about the “life” of a specific artwork. Additionally, museums could contribute to the platform by crowd-sourcing information about individual artworks. A provenance map would also be a powerful demonstration of the ways in which artworks become casualties and shapers of history, such as Napoleon’s seizure and relocation of objects in the 19th century and the Nazi theft of objects and allied efforts to save and return artworks in World War II.
BU Today interviews Institute Junior Fellow and Assistant Professor or Marketing in SMG, George Zervas, about his most recent work on the effect of competition on online reviews, in which George and his co-authors concluded that at least 16 percent of the reviews are fake. The researchers found that the worst offenders are restaurants seeking to offset negative write-ups, that chain restaurants are the least likely to commit review fraud, and that restaurants sometimes take the low ground by posting fraudulent negative reviews for establishments competing for the same customer base.
The Charles River Privacy Day will take place on Friday November 15, at the Hariri Institute at Boston University. There will be 4-5 talks covering different aspects of the challenge of protecting privacy of personal information in public databases. Confirmed speakers include:
- Yaniv Ehlrich (MIT/Whitehead)
- Katrina Ligett (Caltech)
- Aaron Roth (Penn)
The Charles River Privacy Day is co-organized by Ran Canetti, Sharon Goldberg, Kobbi Nissim, Sofya Rashkhodnikova, Leo Reyzin, and Adam Smith, and is sponsored by the Center for Reliable Information Systems and Cyber Security and by the Hariri Institute for Computing at Boston University.
The full program will follow in the coming weeks; check the web pages of the Privacy Year at Boston University for more details.
The Hariri Institute for Computing at Boston University is pleased to announce its third cohort of Junior Faculty Fellows. They are:
- Taylor Boas, Assistant Professor, Department of Political Science
- Francesco Decarolis, Assistant Professor, Department of Economics
- Pankaj Mehta, Assistant Professor, Department of Physics
- Konstantinos Spiliopoulos, Assistant Professor, Department of Math and Statistics
- Dylan Walker, Assistant Professor, Department of Information Systems
- Georgios Zervas, Assistant Professor, Department of Marketing
The SIMAC workshop on “Numerical Algorithm for Extreme Computing Architectures” will be held at Boston University on November 4th and 5th. It will focus on the design of Numerical Algorithms and Software Frameworks to accommodate the increasingly complex environment of multiscale physics and complex heterogeneous HPC architectures. Algorithmic examples include Multigrid (MG), Domain Decomposition (DD)solvers and Adaptive Mesh Refinement (AMR). Hardware examples include GPU and PHI heterogeneous architectures. The goal is to explore existing collaborative teams and frameworks that seek to respond to this disruptive technological landscape and suggest new or improved methods required to keep pace with the evolution of Extreme scale computing.
A $300,000 gift by Paul Maritz, Chief Executive Officer of Pivotal (an EMC-backed startup), is providing the critical resources needed to launch BU’s Cloud Computing Initiative (CCI), which is incubated at the Hariri Institute for Computing, and which is spearheaded by CS Research Professor and Institute Fellow, Orran Krieger.
Recently named as one of the 50 Most Powerful People in Enterprise Technology, Paul Maritz formed Pivotal in 2013. At its core, Pivotal builds big data infrastructures, which are able to handle next-generation workloads, and which can be adopted broadly through development and use of application-friendly platforms. Before being tapped by EMC Corporation to lead Pivotal, Maritz served as Chief Strategist of EMC, and as CEO of VMware Inc., where he remains a member of its board of directors. During his tenure at VMware, Maritz led the transformation of the company from a technology leader in virtualization to a category leader in cloud computing.
Boston University will host the 2014 International Conference on Cloud Engineering (IC2E) from March 11 to March 15, 2014. More
Just as today’s engineers design integrated circuits based on the known physical properties of materials and use them to create electronic devices with amazing capabilities, tomorrow’s synthetic biologists are poised to design and build biological systems that are custom-tailored to make a better world. Engineered life could lead to improved human health, a safer food supply, and a cleaner, more abundant supply of energy. Unlike many other areas of engineering, biology is incredibly non-linear. That poses a challenge: Unleashing its potential will require a broad and sustained effort, drawing on great minds from multiple disciplines. But the payoff could be huge, as synthetic biology is poised to make the kind of leaps in the 21st century that computer technology made in the 20th.
Among the topics our expert panel discussed:
- Near-term applications of synthetic biology for creating new drugs, chemicals, and fuels.
- The social and economic implications of synthetic biology.
- Ethical and environmental challenges of synthetic biology.
- Training tomorrow’s innovators in synthetic biology.
- Future possibilities—a look ahead at what might be possible 20 years from now.
From June 10th to June 14th, the Hariri Institute hosted the Summer School on Quantitative Systems Immunology, a national workshop organized by the Center for Computational Immunology. The workshop is intended for trainees in the biological sciences who want to explore the use of mathematics, statistics, and computation in their own research but may not have experience in the quantitative or computational sciences. More
A project entitled “Inside the Vault” to enable interactive citizen access to U.S. government data on financial institutions, which was submitted by the Institute to the Knight Foundation made it to the finalists round.
The project’s aims to create public insight from information the government already has. We can take that raw data—quarterly filings by thousands of banks—and make it available for exploration on the Web. We propose to develop a continuously updated view (with some lag time, of course) that enables citizens to ask how safe their banks are, gives journalists the tools to dig into the data behind the stories they are writing, provides the raw material for independent academic research on the health of the financial system, and creates an open backstop to the Dodd-Frank safeguards. Building on that, we plan to correlate the bank filings with other public data to build a more capable system for analysis. Making the data more easily available has the potential to transform current research in these areas.
That’s only the beginning. Having the data available for analytics, we want to explore what we can really learn from it. Can we find the warning signs of future financial crises before they drive the economy off a cliff? As citizens and journalists, can we assess the efficacy of financial regulations? Can data scientists mine the available data to find the anomalies and piece the clues to hidden problems? Can we use the data to create a big picture of systemic risk? Can citizen access effectively supplement the work of the new Office of Financial Research?