CISE Hosts 10th Annual Graduate Student Workshop (CGSW 10.0)

Over 100 attendees gathered on January 26th, 2024 to attend the 10th Annual Graduate Student Workshop, hosted by the Center of Information and Systems Engineering (CISE). This symposium, organized by students for students, featured doctoral students from different colleges across Boston University presenting their original research. 

CGSW 10.0 Organizers (left to right): Weichao Zhou (PhD Candidate, ECE), Arslan Riaz (PhD Candidate, ECE), Zexin Sun (PhD Candidate, SE), Jonathan Chamberlain (PhD Candidate, ECE), and Vittorio Giammarino (PhD Candidate, SE).

CGSW 10.0 commenced with opening remarks from Ayse Coskun (ECE, SE), CISE Director. Coskun shared her excitement over the fierce competition between students with their novel presentations. 36 abstracts were submitted to the CGSW 10.0 Student Host Organizer Team, and 18 of these papers were selected to be presented at the conference. The presentations were organized into five sessions based on the topic of the papers submitted. 

The conference hosted plenary speaker Stephanie Gil, Assistant Professor of Engineering and Applied Science at Harvard University. Her talk titled, Making Multi-Robot Systems Capable and Secure, highlighted her team’s work on making multi-robot systems (MRS) more capable in real-world settings. Gil shared the challenges that MRS face today, which include situational awareness, environment learning and adaptation, performance guarantees, resilience, and long-term decision-making. Gil’s group, the Robotics, Embedded Autonomy & Communication Theory (REACT) Lab, focuses on resilience coordination, communication as a sensor for robotics, and intelligent decision-making. 

CGSW 10.0’s second plenary speaker was Eshed Ohn-Bar (ECE), Assistant Professor at Boston University and head of the Human-to-Everything (H2X) Lab. Ohn-Bar’s research lies at the intersection of machine perception, learning, and human-computer interaction. His talk, titled Machine Teaching, emphasized the importance of the pacing and knowledge that should be disseminated to machines as we improve the teaching of machines and refine their tasks to “make machine-teaching closer to how we teach humans.” 

Throughout the day, audience members voted on presentations based on how engaging they were, presentation slides, and clarity of the presentation. After eighteen dynamic presentations, the student organizers scored and tabulated the results of the audience votes, with the top three presentations coming from the “Systems and Hardware” category. 

Arslan Riaz (Advisor: Rabia Yazicigil) won first prize for the best presentation for his talk titled Ultra-Low Energy Universal Soft-Detection Decoding. He shared his research on the Ordered Reliability Bits Guessing Random Additive Noise Decoding (ORBGRAND) in 40nm CMOS featuring five distinct goals and included a demonstration of the chip. Riaz’s emphasis on ultra-low energy in the decoding process is important, especially for wireless communication systems. Using soft-detection decoding with minimal energy use is highly desirable for applications such as battery-operated devices.

The second-place winner was Zeynep Ece Kizilates (Advisor: Rabia Yazicigil), Interleaved Noise Recycling in a Soft-Detection Scenario Using ORBGRAND Decoder, whose research built on Riaz’s presentation. The study explained how they extended the application of interleaved noise recycling to a soft detection scenario, employing the ORBGRAND chip. This area of research is crucial to the potential improvement in communication systems, error correction, and signal processing, as the ORBGRAND decoder offers unique capabilities to achieve these goals.  

In third place was Shashwath Bharadwaj (Advisor: Vivek Goyal), Mitigating Misattributions in Single-Photon Detector Arrays with Row-Column Readouts, whose work introduces a novel method to resolve up to 4-photon coincidences in single-photon detector arrays with row-column readouts.

(Left to right): Shashwath Bhardawaj (PhD Candidate, ECE), Arslan Riaz (PhD Candidate, ECE), Ayse Coskun (CISE Director), Zeynep Ece Kizilates (PhD Candidate, ECE)

The event concluded with an evening reception for attendees and their guests. Students took this time to engage with faculty, family, and friends, and to celebrate the work of fellow students. CGSW 10.0 marks the 10th anniversary of the annual conference, which has featured 139 student presentations. This forum will continue next year, and we excitedly invited student affiliates to submit abstracts to present at the CGSW 11.0. 

More information on the day’s events can be found here.