Scarlet Shell, assistant professor of biology and biotechnology, has received a $1.1 million CAREER Award from the National Science Foundation for a five-year program to study the molecular mechanisms bacteria use to survive stressful conditions of starvation and lack of oxygen. 

An interview with Susan Landau regarding encryption and what we need to know was broadcast by more than a dozen public radio stations across the country.

 

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The Boston Globe reports on WPI’s “AlcoGait,” a first-of-its-kind smartphone app developed by Emmanuel Agu, associate professor of computer science, and students to detect when a user has reached the legal blood alcohol limit. The app uses data from a smartphone’s gyroscope and accelerometer to monitor changes in the way users walk, similar to the common “walk the line” sobriety field test police use with suspected drunk drivers.

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Healthcare IT News publishes an article on hacking, including comments by Craig Shue, assistant professor of computer science.  "We're seeing that bad days happen an awful a lot in a network," Shue recently told the HIMSS Privacy and Security Forum.

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An Associated Press article about campus bomb-sniffing dogs, including the WPI Police Department's newest member, Bella, appeared in more than 150 media outlets, nationwide, including the Arizona Sun, Fort Worth Star Telegram, and the Miami Herald. The article was accompanied by a photo of WPI’s handler officer Brian Lavelle walking Bella on campus.

Associated Press

The public-private partnership Project Lead The Way between WPI and Medway that focuses on hands-on learning was highlighted.  “Medway expanded Project Lead The Way over the last few years, thanks, the superintendent says, to generous grant funding from WPI,” the station reported. 

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Featured was the work of Greg Fischer, associate professor, mechanical engineering, who, with his wife, Laurie Dickstein-Fischer, Ph.D., a professor at Salem State, developed the robotic penguin PABI (Penguin Autism Behavioral Intervention) for autistic children. 

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WPI President Laurie Leshin is among the members of this new group of experts that will steer statewide policy to support the growing health information technology industry.  The councilwill be supported by the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development and the Massachusetts eHealth Institute at MassTech.

HealthcareITNews

The Boston Globe notes WPI students will be among the first group of 20 area college graduates to benefit from a new coalition of business, academia, and nonprofits that have launched Hack.Diversity. This program recruits black and Latino computer science and engineering students from local urban colleges and then will place graduating students in internships at area tech companies, giving them mentors and support to land a permanent job.

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The Wall Street Journal publishes this op-ed by WPI’s Steven Bullock, professor, humanities and arts; and author of the new book, “Tea Sets and Tyranny: The Politics of Politeness in Early America.” “The values that impelled the man who became America’s oldest major revolutionary and America’s first diplomat may still be useful to our troubled public life,” Bullock writes.

Wall Street Journal

Sean Kelly, of the Center for Resource Recovery and Recycling at WPI, talks about the impact of a foreign tariff battle on the scrap metal market. 

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Innovation features an article by WPI’s Candace Sidner, research professor. Robotics offers businesses and the military many opportunities for new markets, and new help to users across a wide spectrum of tasks and needs,” Sidner stated. “Making robots useful will depend on making them useable by humans.”
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WPI is listed at #19 and is the highest ranking college in the annual report.  The Globe, along with the Commonwealth Institute, looked at revenue or operating budget and other variables, including number of full-time employees in the state, workplace and management diversity, and innovative projects.
Boston Globe Magazine

The Worcester Business Journal takes a look at the intellectual property policies at area colleges, with an interview with Todd Keiller, WPI’s director of intellectual property and innovation. 

Worcester Business Journal

NPR’s “All Tech Considered” interviews WPI cybersecurity expert and professor Susan Landau on why neither of the 2016 presidential candidates have discussed how the U.S. should handle foreign hackers.  "I think there is an underlying issue [that] Secretary Clinton is avoiding—I'm not sure it's hit the radar for Donald Trump—and that's the encryption issue," she says. 

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A new multi-university research center led by WPI, is aiming to dramatically reduce energy and water usage, while also increasing the economic competitiveness of a broad spectrum of industries by bringing innovations to one of the most energy-intensive aspects of manufacturing: drying.

Alumni Martin Rowe explores the value of the WPI curriculum that balances creativity, technical skill, and diversity of perspectives in effective problem solving. Rowe interviewed Chrystanthe Demetry, associate professor of mechanical engineering; Michael Gennert, professor and director of robotics engineering; John Orr, director of sustainability and professor emeritus of electrical and computer engineering; and Richard Vaz, director of interdisciplinary global studies division,

 

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Battery Resources, co-founded by WPI professors Diran Apelian and Yan Wang, has been named a finalist in MassChallenge’s  2016 Top Startups. Battery Resources recycles spent lithium-ion batteries into cathode materials, which can be used in new batteries. 

Boston Business Journal

"Voting machines are privately manufactured and developed and, as with other many other IT systems, the code is typically proprietary,” said Suzanne Mello-Stark, associate teaching professor and forensic computer scientist .

Computerworld

BBC News quotes from the blog “Securing Phones and Securing Us (Revisited)” by WPI professor and cybersecurity expert Susan Landau on the issue of the government accessing encrypted information on iPhones. Landau wrote last week that the answer is not a bill allowing easier access but “instead we must increase law enforcement’s capabilities to handle encrypted communications and devices. 

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Alex Wyglinski, associate professor of electrical engineering and computer engineering at Worcester Polytechnic Institute, and his team of Ph.D. candidates and fellow faculty members are working to apply bumblebee communication methods to driverless cars.

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