aarondubrow writes: The National Science Foundation announced $74.5 million in grants for basic research in cybersecurity. Among the awards are projects to understand and offer reliability to cryptocurrencies; invent technologies to broadly scan large swaths of the Internet and automate the detection and patching of vulnerabilities; and establish the science of censorship resistance by developing accurate models of the capabilities of censors. According to NSF, long-term support for fundamental cybersecurity research has resulted in public key encryption, software security bug detection, spam filtering and more.
aarondubrow writes: To its advocates and participants, the Maker Movement resonates with those characteristics that we believe makes America great: independence and ingenuity, creativity and resourcefulness. But as impressive as today's tools are, they're not accessible to many Americans simply because of their cost and high technological barrier to entry. An article in the Huffington Post describes efforts supported by the National Science Foundation and other federal agencies to create new tools, technologies and approaches to make the Maker movement more inclusive and democratic.
aarondubrow writes: NSF and Intel announced two new grants totaling $6 million to teams led by Stanford and University of Pennsylvania professors that will address the security and privacy of cyber-physical systems. The new model of cooperation between government, industry and academia aims to increase the relevance and impact of long-range research by transitioning important discoveries into products and services more easily.
aarondubrow writes: In 1995, Vern Paxson, then a computer science Ph.D. student at the University of California, Berkeley, began writing what would eventually become Bro, the open source cybersecurity software that defends innumerable networks today, including key government and business enterprises in the U.S. (The name, "Bro," is a reference to Big Brother, an Orwellian reminder that monitoring comes hand in hand with the potential for privacy violations.) On Tuesday, at its annual meeting of users and cybersecurity engineers, Bro celebrates its 20th Anniversary. The project represents one of the best examples of federal funding helping to transition innovative cybersecurity technology out of academia and into the world in support of networking security.
aarondubrow writes: The National Science Foundation funds basic cyberlearning research and since 2011 has awarded roughly 170 grants, totaling more than $120 million, to EdTech research projects around the country. However, NSF's approach to cyber-learning has been different from other public, private and philanthropic efforts. NSF funds compelling ideas, helps rigorously test them and then assists in transitioning the best ideas from research to practice. A story in the Huffington Post describes 7 examples of leading cyberlearning projects, from artificial intelligence to augmented reality, that are transforming education.
aarondubrow writes: Automakers have presented a vision of the future where the driver can check his or her email, chat with friends or even sleep while shuttling between home and the office. However, to AI experts, it's not clear that this vision is a realistic one. In many areas, including driving, we'll go through a long period where humans act as co-pilots or supervisors before the technology reaches full autonomy (if it ever does). In such a scenario, the car would need to communicate with drivers to alert them when they need to take over control. In cases where the driver is non-responsive, the car must be able to autonomously make the decision to safely move to the side of the road and stop. Researchers from the University of Massachusetts Amherst have developed 'fault-tolerant planning' algorithms that allow semi-autonomous machines to devise and enact a "Plan B."
aarondubrow writes: As supercomputing becomes central to the work and progress of researchers in all fields, new kinds of computing resources and more inclusive modes of interaction are required. Today, the National Science Foundation (NSF) announced $16M in awards to support two new supercomputing acquisitions for the open science community. The systems — "Bridges" at the Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center (PSC) and "Jetstream," co-located at the Indiana University Pervasive Technology Institute (PTI) and The University of Texas at Austin's Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC) — respond to the needs of the scientific computing community for more high-end, large-scale computing resources while helping to create a more inclusive computing environment for science and engineering.
aarondubrow writes: From disaster recovery to caring for the elderly in the home, scientists and engineers are developing robots that can handle critical tasks in close proximity to humans, safely and with greater resilience than previous generations of intelligent machines. Today, the National Science Foundation (NSF), in partnership with the National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Agriculture and NASA announced $31.5 million in new awards to spur the development and use of co-robots--robots that work cooperatively with people.The awards mark the third round of funding made through the National Robotics Initiative (NRI), a multi-agency program launched in September 2012. The 52 new research awards, ranging from $300,000 to $1.8 million over one to four years, advance fundamental understanding of robotic sensing, motion, computer vision, machine learning and human-computer interaction.
mdsolar writes: The authorities in Texas reported on Wednesday that a second health care worker involved in the treatment of a patient who died of the Ebola virus had tested positive for the disease after developing a fever.
The worker, who was not identified by name, had been “among those who took care of Thomas Eric Duncan after he was diagnosed with Ebola,” a statement from the Texas Department of State Health Services said.
aarondubrow writes: The ability to collect and analyze massive amounts of data is transforming science, industry and everyday life. But what we've seen so far is likely just the tip of the iceberg. As part of an effort to improve the nation's capacity in data science, NSF today announced $31 million in new funding to support 17 innovative projects under the Data Infrastructure Building Blocks (DIBBs) program, including data infrastructure for education, ecology and geophysics. "Each project tests a critical component in a future data ecosystem in conjunction with a research community of users," said said Irene Qualters, division director for Advanced Cyberinfrastructure at NSF. "This assures that solutions will be applied and use-inspired."
aarondubrow writes: The National Science Foundation and the Semiconductor Research Corporation announced nine research awards to 10 universities totaling nearly $4 million under a joint program focused on Secure, Trustworthy, Assured and Resilient Semiconductors and Systems. The awards support the development of new strategies, methods and tools at the circuit, architecture and system levels, to decrease the likelihood of unintended behavior or access; increase resistance and resilience to tampering; and improve the ability to provide authentication throughout the supply chain and in the field.
"The processes and tools used to design and manufacture semiconductors ensure that the resulting product does what it is supposed to do. However, a key question that must also be addressed is whether the product does anything else, such as behaving in ways that are unintended or malicious," said Keith Marzullo, division director of NSF's Computer and Network Systems Division.