Spotlights

These spotlights illustrate only a partial list of the experiences faculty, alumni and students have during their time at the Bren School and beyond.

To suggest someone to spotlight please contact Ted Kissell at communications@ics.uci.edu or (949) 824-6469.


 

» BUTTERWORTH AND BEALL COMPETITIONS 2014
Butterworth and Beall competitions reward the best in both hardware and software. more »

» ICS GOES TO D.C.
Nalini Venkatasubramanian presents SmartAmerica project at White House. more »

» A BREATH OF FRESH AIR
When Tony Givargis and his team set out to build a better lung simulator, they discovered that software wasn’t enough. more »

» MORE THAN MEETS THE EYE
Student council's annual ICS Day event showcases community. more »

» APPS WITH AN IMPACT
Second annual Autism AppJam engages Orange County community. more »

» GREAT PEOPLE, GREAT IDEAS
Alum Art Hitomi talks about what ICS has given him — and how he gives back. more »

» BOOK IT
Rina Dechter publishes new book on graphical models in artificial intelligence. more »

» GAME DAYS
Atari, Blizzard power up VGDC's Game Developers Week. more »

» ÜBER EXPERT
Google senior research scientist and 2013 ICS Distinguished Alumnus Dan Russell examines how people use the Internet to conduct searches and organize information. more »

» WHAT'S NEXT
Broadcom co-founder, chairman and CTO Henry Samueli headlined the latest Top Trends in Tech event, presented jointly by the Bren and Samueli schools. more »

» FINALS BOUND
UCI team takes second place in regional ACM competition, invited to finals in Russia next June. more »

» SOCIAL THINKERS
Intel Science & Technology Center for Social Computing welcomes an interdisciplinary class of fellows. more »

» BIG DAY FOR ICS
Dean Hal Stern welcomes a record-setting class of new students as the 2013-14 academic year kicks off with nearly 800 new faces. more »

» GIFTED GUIDE
UCI Emeriti Association recognizes Bren Professor Judith Olson with a 2013 Outstanding Mentor Award. more »

» 10TH ANNUAL BUTTERWORTH COMPETITION
Creators of Bluetooth Assisted Tracking, or BAT, win the 2013 Butterworth Product Development Competition, a contest that promotes the creation of commercially viable technology while fostering entrepreneurship among students. more »

» 2013 CELEBRATION OF TEACHING
Ph.D. students Jed Brubaker and Eric Hennigan and associate professor Don Patterson honored for their outstanding contributions to undergraduate instruction. more »

» FOSTERING INCLUSIVITY
Recent business information management graduate closes impressive UCI career with a 2013 Chancellor’s Award of Distinction. more »

» ANTEATER AWARD WINNER
ICS Student Council recognized by the office of Student Life & Leadership for launching first-ever Med AppJam competition. more »

» AUTISM APPJAM
UC Irvine students from various disciplines team up to create mobile applications that benefit persons with autism. more »

» INIT(TOGETHER)
Student group launches conference to facilitate growth of vibrant female tech community in Southern California. more »

» A WHOLE NEW CLASS
Association for Computing Machinery taps professor Gene Tsudik to spearhead major security classification overhaul. more »

» CULTIVATING COLLABORATION
Dean Stern unveils the Kay Family Foundation Innovation Lab, which features Apple TVs, a PolyVision smartboard, and MacBook Airs and iPads available for checkout by students. more »

» FIRST-EVER MED APPJAM
Students from UCI's Bren School and School of Medicine team up to create iOS-based applications useful to both physicians and patients. more »

» 2012 ECR FELLOW
First-year Ph.D. student Kristin Roher received a Eugene-Cota Robles Fellowship, considered the most prestigious diversity fellowship offered at UC Irvine. more »

» ALUMNA JOINS GOOGLE.ORG
Nithya Sambasivan (Ph.D. ’12), now a user experience researcher with the philanthropic division of Google, continues to study the role that digital technology plays in developing countries. more »

» SCACCHI RECEIVES DISTINGUISHED ALUMNUS AWARD
Walt Scacchi (Ph.D. ’81), senior research scientist and research faculty at the Institute for Software Research and research director for the Center for Computer Games and Virtual Worlds, received the Bren School’s 2012 Distinguished Alumnus Award. more »

» PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT SUPERSTARS
Ten teams of UCI students representing various disciplines — including computer science, business and the arts — competed for cash prizes totaling $10,000 in the final round of the 9th Annual Butterworth Product Development Competition. more »

» PROJECTS GALORE
Dozens of undergraduates showed off their innovations at the annual Student Project Showcase, including iPad and Android apps, web portals, and a home automation system. more »

» LATEST APPJAM FOCUSES ON SELF-IMPROVEMENT
A team of UCI undergraduates took home the latest AppJam Tournament grand prize with “AwkTalk,” which provides users with instant feedback on their social skills. more »

» 2012 NSF FELLOWS
Bren School Ph.D. students Kevin Bache and Nicholas DiGiuseppe join 15 other UC Irvine students as 2012 National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellows. more »

» CREATING GAMES FROM SCRATCH IN 7 DAYS
Five groups, each with about 15 students, participated in the latest Game Jam, organized by the Video Game Development Club. Competitors were given one week to design a fully functional video game that incorporates the theme of "growth." more »

» NEW STUDENT CLUB GETS CREATIVE
With workshop topics ranging from Arduino hacking to espresso brewing, new student organization Design, Art, and Technology Hackerspace (DAT Space) is making good on its promise to provide a student-run physical space where members of the UCI community can meet and work together on creative projects. more »

» STUDENTS BUILD APPS IN A WEEK
Eight teams of Bren School students with varying levels of programming experience — ranging from proficient to none — created fully functional mobile applications in just one week, as part of the inaugural ICS Student Council AppJam Tournament. more »

» CSEDWEEK 2011
Dec. 4-10 marks the third annual Computer Science Education Week — a national movement that spotlights the critical role computer science education plays in preparing students for 21st Century careers. Debra Richardson, professor of informatics and founding dean of the Bren School, is chair of CSEdWeek. more »

» CAREER FAIR SEASON
Bren School students gathered recently at the Student Center to meet with potential employers. A Career Center-sponsored fair gave them opportunities to learn more about available jobs and internships, while the ICS Student Council Reverse Career Fair provided students a chance to showcase their projects to recruiters. more »

» WELCOME WEEK 2011
The Donald Bren School of Information and Computer Sciences this fall welcomes more than 500 new students, including its largest freshman class since 2003. more »

» SOLVING MICROSOFT'S SEARCH CHALLENGE
A group of Bren School students took third place in the Microsoft Speller Challenge, in which teams submitted programs designed to suggest plausible alternatives to misspellings in search queries. More than 100 teams submitted 435 programs, placing UCI in the top 1 percent of the competition. more »

» WORKING HARD ON PLAYING GAMES
A weeklong competition organized by UCI’s Video Game Development Club prompted Bren School students to publish games on the Xbox Live Indie Arcade. more »

» NSF FELLOWSHIP WINNER
Informatics graduate student Sen Hirano is one of 20 UCI students who received a prestigious 2011 National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship. more »

» BUDDING ENTREPRENEURS SHINE
The top three teams in the 2011 Butterworth Product Development Competition were recognized in a June awards ceremony. more »

» UCI QUARTER PLANNER
A fourth-year Computer Science major is on a quest to perfect a tool that helps UCI students better visualize their quarter. more »

» STUDENTS REAP CAMPUS AWARDS
Three Bren:ICS student organizations and a freshman computer science major took home Anteater Awards, presented by the Office of the Dean of Students, for their achievements throughout the 2010-11 academic year. more »

» SHOWCASE HIGHLIGHTS
More than 60 undergraduates in 14 teams presented their projects at the 2011 Bren:ICS Student Showcase. The event highlighted a range of student innovations, from mobile apps, to search engines, interactive games and more. more »

» HE GETS AROUND
Postdoctoral Research Fellow Garnet Hertz has designed a video-game concept car that combines an arcade game cabinet with a real-world electric vehicle. As the driver navigates, a computer-vision system projects the surrounding environment as an 8-bit video game on its windshield. more »

» LEADING BY EXAMPLE
As the first in his family to attend college, Jose Romero-Mariona says pursuing a Ph.D. has proven to be an exciting journey. His undergraduate work in ICS at UC Irvine influenced his desire to make a difference in the field of science, while actively participating in student organizations early in his educational career served as a platform for his current involvement as a peer mentor. more »

» SOCIALLY CONNECTED
Social media is everywhere - Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, My Space, blogs. Making sense of this online networking universe is Donald Patterson, UC Irvine assistant professor of informatics. more »

» PRESCRIPTION FOR SUCCESS
David Cheng, always wanted to be a businessman. In 1997, he saw his opportunity and founded Accenx, a leading provider of health information exchange and interoperability solutions, with more than 150 customers and the largest dedicated team of integration specialists in the industry. more »

» BLENDED PASSION
Jeff Monroe didn’t see a difference between the creativity of the artist and the creativity of the software engineer, so he co-founded a company that melded the two and provided him an outlet for both of his passions. more »

» PREDICTING PROPERTIES
Doctoral student Chloe Azencott hopes her research into statistical machine learning and data mining can help reduce the time and cost of the drug development process. more »

» HYBRID VIGOR
Doctoral student Yong Ming Kow is studying modders, users that create functionality in a software product that is much more suited to their own needs. Kow wants to learn how modding culture can impact the future of software and product development. more »

» ISCHOOLS INSIGHT
More than 50 doctoral students from three UC campuses discussed their research and a variety of research related issues at the inagural UC iSchools Workshop held in January 2008. more »

» STUDENT AMBASSADORS TO THE RESCUE
The Bren School Student Ambassadors program is on a mission to reach out to potential computer science students through a near-peer outreach program that profiles student successes. more »

» SUPERNATURAL CONCLUSIONS
If members of the scientific community once debated the existence of psychic abilities, professor of statistics Jessica Utts' research has helped put the argument to rest. more »

» STAYING CURRENT
Marco Cesarano knows the field of computer science is constantly evolving and if he wanted to keep his skills current, he would have to take advantage of opportunities to improve his skills and knowledge. When he saw an advertisement at the National Council of Research in his hometown of Naples, Italy for UC Irvine’s Master’s in Information and Computer Science with a Concentration in Embedded Systems, he knew he found an avenue that would allow him to take his skills and knowledge to the next level. more »

» ONCE IN A LIFETIME OPPORTUNITY
Rosario Cammarota was looking for a Master’s program, but he wanted to stay in his hometown of Naples, Italy and continue to work full time at the local start-up he joined. Pursuing a Master's degree in Embedded Systems at UC Irvine provided him a 'once in a lifetime opportunity' to study in the United States for two summers while studying the rest of the time at the Istituto di Cibernetica Eduardo Caianiello in Naples, Italy. more »

» A THIRST FOR KNOWLEDGE
Working as an IT consultant was rewarding for Charu Srivastava, but she had a thirst for knowledge that could only be quenched by returning to school for an advanced degree. Pursuing a Master's degree in Embedded Systems at UC Irvine enabled her to do that and allowed her a unique opportunity to study for three quarters at the Istituto di Cibernetica Eduardo Caianiello in Naples, Italy. more »

» UNDERSTANDING INFLUENCE
Doctoral student Lilly Irani is studying how the experiences of gender and cultural background, such as national background, influence the way technologies get designed. more »

» CALLFIRE ANSWERS THE CALL
Integrating a 100 year-old medium – the telephone, with a 30-year old medium – the Internet, rekindled the friendship of four alumni and led to the creation of CallFire, a company that, with fewer than six full-time employees has already attained several million dollars in revenue. more »

» OVERCOMING OVERLOAD
Doctoral student Norman Makoto Su studies how people combine certain media types, and how they manage their interactions can reveal what strategies and policies organizations can employ to alleviate "communication" overload and design of systems to manage communications. more »

» CRUISE CONTROL
Jasmine Yau ’03 discovered that a career in information and computer sciences requires a lot more than strong technical knowledge. A business analyst at Kelley Blue Book, she works on the company web site, kbb.com, which requires her to rely on her interpersonal skills as much as her technical skill. more »

» FUN AND GAMES
Hector Parra didn't want to graduate without taking the computer game development class, and while it gave him an opportunity to spend time playing in a virtual world, it also taught him intangible skills he can use in the real world. more »

» KING OF RISC
Jeffrey Ma '03 is putting what he learned at the Bren School to full use at ARM, an intellectual property company specializing in mobile low-power, low-cost RISC processors. more »

» THE PRODUCER
As Executive Producer of UCI's Vagina Monologues, Jacob Knobel found himself spending a lot of time on repetitive tasks, so the senior Informatics major utilized his programming skills to create a stage management software program that allowed him to work more efficiently and focus on more important aspects of the production. more »

» THE DILEMMA
Trina Choontanom credits her two older sisters for sparking her interest in the field of computer science, however, she didn't know if she wanted to concentrate on computer software or hardware. Luckily UCI made the decision easy by offering a major that combined both areas. more »

» STAYING CONNECTED
Informatics Ph.D. student Bryan Semaan is studying how people use technology to continue their collaborative work despite living in a disrupted environment caused by a natural disaster, terrorist attack or conflict. more »

» IN THE ZONE
When Rebecca Maessen was considering where to attend college, she wanted a place that would allow her to fulfill her passion for basketball and computer science, even if it meant going half way around the world. more »

» BEST OF BOTH WORLDS
Michelle Ang, didn't know if she wanted to concentrate on computer software or hardware. Luckily UCI made the decision easy by offering a major that combined both areas. more »

» SWEET MUSIC
Sam Archer is accustomed to creating fluid rhythms as a member of the UCI Pep Band, a trait he has carried over to the class room. more »

» ON THE JOB EXPERIENCE
Heading into the end of his sophomore year David Purpura already has more job experience than most college graduates. more »

» OUT OF THE CUBE
Aurora Bedford was interested in the human aspect of computers, not just hardware stuff and that interest drew her to the Bren School's Informatics major. more »

» STARTING EARLY
Informatics major Bryant Hornick is one of the more than one-third of UCI undergraduates who don't wait until graduate school to do research with faculty. more »

» A HELPING HAND
Della Halim, president of the Women in Information and Computer Sciences student group, helps ensure the female students in ICS feel more at home in their often male dominated classes. more »

» KING OF THE ANTHILL
Jeff Fulkerson made Bren School history by becoming the school’s first student to run for and win UCI Homecoming King. He was coronated during halftime of the February 3rd men's basketball game. more »

» THE COORDINATOR
Ph.D. candidate Anita Sarma is researching ways to prevent breakdowns in the coordination of software development projects. Her novel approach warns developers of relevant parallel activities and changes that will lead to potential development conflicts. more »

» RUNNING ON OCTANE
During his freshmen year, Robert Olson's participation in the Bren School's hITEC OCTANe product development competition ignited his passion for entrepreneurship and earned him a $5,000 check. more »

» FOREIGN EXCHANGE
After receiving a reciprocity fellowship from UC’s Education Abroad Program (EAP) and spending one year at UCI, Ph.D. student Pablo Diaz-Gutierrez decided that graduate school at UCI was right for him. more »

» CHANGING COURSE
Ph.D. student Kristina Winbladh had her heart set on becoming a biomedical researcher, until she discovered that computers were a lot more logical than organic cells. more »

» FAMILY TIES
Blue and gold blood courses through Sarah Gibas' veins, both her parents attended UCI as ICS majors, but it wasn’t just the strong family ties that lead her to choose UCI. more »

» DASHBOARD CONFESSIONAL
Orange County native Gerald Bortis is working on Dashboard, a project that allows software developers to become more aware of the work that is going on in their environment and helps them to more effectively collaborate with their teammates. more »

» A PERFECT FIT
After completing his Bachelor degree at UCI, Ph.D. student Rex Chen saw no reason to leave the friendly and supportive confines of Irvine when he choose to pursue his Ph.D. more »

» CUSTOMER CONFIDENTIAL
After graduating with his bachelor degree, Einar Mykletun worked as a programmer, but that was not satisfying enough and he ultimately decided to pursue a Ph.D. in the area of security and cryptography. Now, Mykletun is working on ways to protect the confidentiality of customer data stored on vendor databases. more »

» THE MODELER
Ph.D. student Guy Yosiphon was looking for a challenge. After earning a bachelor degree he worked in the software industry for two and a half years as a programmer and project leader. The work was rewarding, but he missed the challenge of academic studies and the scientific research environment, two things he found at the Bren School. more »

» BETTER, FASTER, SMALLER
What Calvin Klein, Tommy Hilfiger and Donna Karan are to fashion, Ph.D. student Sudeep Pasricha is to small electronics we use on a regular basis. The next time you purchase a smaller, flatter cell phone or a digital camera that is the size of a credit card and weighs about as much, you'll have Pasricha's research efforts to thank. more »

» TRAILBLAZER
A member of the inaguaral class of the Informatics major and the founder and president of the Informatics Student Association, (INSA), Gabriela Marcu is blazing a trail for future Informatics students at UCI. more »

» FUELING A PASSION
Indecision about a career led Amber Israelsen to leave school and work for several years in a variety of industries. It was during these journeyman years, that she discovered her passion for computers. more »

» THE SECOND TIME AROUND
At 45, David Lamb is only months away from graduation and beginning his second career as a computer scientist. more »

» THE APPRENTICE
Although she's only 23, Bren School of ICS graduate Terica Kindred '03 has an impressive resume: Software engineer. Speaker. Author. more »

» MAN OF THE HOUSE
Michael Golightly
, housing assistant for the ICS Theme House, helps his 24 residents adjust to life in college by providing mentorship and resources for their development and enrichment. more »

» UNLOCKING THE CLUB HOUSE
Jennifer Law, former president of UCI's Women in Computer Science (WICS) group, is working to help and encourage women to pursue a college degree and a successful career in computer science. more »

» DYNAMIC DUO
Victor Liu and Adam Bonner took a risk when graduating from the Bren School by foregoing the opportunity to join established companies. Instead they decided to branch out on their own. That gamble is starting to pay off. more »

» FATHER OF CAD/CAM
Success is somewhat commonplace for the trailblazing Patrick Hanratty. Anointed the 'Father of CAD/CAM' for his pioneering work in computer-aided design and manufacturing, industry analysts estimate that 70 percent of all 3-D mechanical CAD/CAM systems available today trace their roots back to Hanratty’s original code. more »

» EXPERIENTIAL EXPERT
Ramesh Jain, former professor of embedded and experiential systems at Georgia Institute of Technology, was recently named the first Donald Bren Professor of Information and Computer Sciences at UC Irvine. more »

» GOOGLED
Nhu Vuong '05 has come a long way since she began her career at UCI just over four years ago. Vuong, an information and computer science major, is now a software engineer at Google and working on building a company-internal web application. more »

» CLIMBING HIGH
From her vantage, Debra Richardson sees computer technology transforming society for the better. more »

» YAHOO!
Technical Yahoo probably wasn't a title that Shawn Shah '05 imagined having as an undergraduate major in information and computer science. more »

» REVEALING RHTHYMS
Pierre Baldi uses math - and music - to help transform reams of research data into biological breakthroughs. more »