Note: This is a virtual seminar that will be broadcast in Olin Hall 305. Refreshments will be available outside Olin Hall 305 at 2:30 PM.
Title: Computational infrastructure to improve scientific reproducibility
Abstract: The massive increase in the dimensionality of scientific data and the proliferation of complex data analysis methods has raised increasing concerns about the reproducibility of scientific results in many domains of science. I will first present evidence that analytic flexibility in neuroimaging research is associated with surprising variability in scientific outcomes in the wild, even holding the raw data constant. These findings motivate the development of well-tested software tools for neuroimaging data processing and analysis. I will focus in particular on the role of software development tools such as containerization and continuous integration, which provide the potential to deliver automated and reproducible data analysis at scale. I will also discuss the challenging tradeoffs inherent in the usage of complex software by scientists, and the need for increased transparency and validation of scientific software.
Bio: Russell A. Poldrack is the Albert Ray Lang Professor in the Department of Psychology and Professor (by courtesy) of Computer Science at Stanford University, and Director of the Stanford Center for Reproducible Neuroscience. His research uses neuroimaging to understand the brain systems underlying decision making and executive function. His lab is also engaged in the development of neuroinformatics tools to help improve the reproducibility and transparency of neuroscience, including the Openneuro.org and Neurovault.org data sharing projects and the Cognitive Atlas ontology.
Title: Electrets (Dielectrics with quasi-permanent Charges or Dipoles) – A long history and a bright future
Abstract: The history of electrets can be traced back to Thales of Miletus (approx. 624-546 B.C.E.) who reported that pieces of amber (“electron”) attract or repel each other. The science of fundamental electrical phenomena is closely intertwined with the development of electrets which came under such terms as “electrics”, “electrophores”, “charged/poled dielectrics”, etc. until about one century ago. Modern electret research started with Oliver Heaviside (1850-1925), who defined the concept of a “permanently electrized body” and proposed the name “electret” in 1885, and Mototarô Eguchi, who experimentally investigated carnauba wax electrets at the Higher Naval College in Tokyo around 1920. Today, we see a wide range of electret types, electret materials, and electret applications, which are being investigated and developed all over the world in a truly global endeavour. A classification of electrets will be followed by a few examples of useful electret effects and exciting device applications – mainly in the area of electro-mechanical and electro-acoustical transduction which started with the invention of the electret microphone by Sessler and West in the early 1960s. Furthermore, possible synergies between electret research and ultra-high-voltage DC electrical insulation will be mentioned.
Bio: Reimund Gerhard is a Professor of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Potsdam and the current President of the IEEE Dielectrics and Electrical Insulation Society (DEIS). He graduated from the Technical University of Darmstadt as Diplom-Physiker in 1978 and earned his PhD (Doktor-Ingenieur) in Communications Engineering from TU Darmstadt in 1984. From 1985 to 1994, Gerhard was a Research Scientist and Project Manager at the Heinrich-Hertz Institute for Communications Technology (now the Fraunhofer Institute) in Berlin, Germany. He was appointed as a Professor at the University of Potsdam in 1994. From 2004 to 2012, Gerhard served as the Chairman of the Joint Board for the Master-of-Science Program in Polymer Science of FU Berlin, HU Berlin, TU Berlin, and the University of Potsdam. He also served as the Dean of the Faculty of Science at the University of Potsdam from 2008 to 2012, eventually serving as a Senator of the University of Potsdam from 2014 to 2016.
Prof. Gerhard has received many awards and honors over his long career, including an Award (ITG-Preis) from the Information Technology Society (ITG) in the VDE, a silver medal from the Foundation Werner-von-Siemens-Ring, a First Prize Technology Transfer Award Brandenburg, Whitehead Memorial Lecturer of the IEEE CEIDP, and the Award of the EuroEAP Society “for his fundamental scientific contributions in the field of transducers based on dielectric polymers.” He is a Fellow of the American Physical Society (APS) and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE). His research interests include polymer electrets with quasi-permanent space charge, ferro- or piezoelectrets (polymer films with electrically charged cavities), ferroelectric polymers with piezo- and pyroelectric properties, polymer composites with novel property combinations, physical mechanisms of dipole orientation and charge storage, electrically deformable dielectric elastomers (sometimes also called “electro-electrets”), as well as the physics of musical instruments.
Note: There will be a reception after the lecture.
Note: This is a virtual presentation. Here is the link for where the presentation will be taking place.
Title: Engineering Innovations to Change Aging: A Geriatrician’s Attempt at Standing Circuits.
Abstract: The population of older adults with chronic illnesses and functional and cognitive decline is rapidly expanding in the US and worldwide. In parallel, there has been a rapid emergence of new uses for artificial intelligence (AI) and technology in health care driven by developments in sensors, computing at macro and micro scales, communication networks, and progress in deep learning and other reasoning methods. Despite these parallel trends, little focused effort has been made on bridging the gap between the growing needs of older adults and their caregivers and these AI and technology developments. This is partly because the clinical needs of this vulnerable population are tremendous, including dementia, depression, polypharmacy, delirium, incontinence, vertigo, falls, spontaneous bone fractures, failure to thrive, neglect and abuse, and social isolation. The impact of social isolation and depression became even more evident during this recent COVID pandemic, given that almost half of women age over 75 live alone. Properly managing these complex needs of older adults requires special training and expertise, and to complicate matters more, physicians specialized in taking care of older adults are in short demand. An estimated 1.07 geriatricians exist per 10,000 elderly residents in the United States. To design practical AI tools and technologies to better care for older adults, Engineers/Scientists must work hand in hand with Clinical providers specially trained to understand and manage the complex needs of older adults at the physical, cognitive and social domains. In addition, the successful development, testing, and piloting of these technologies require collaboration with clinical researchers that have access to substantial research infrastructure and older patients in real-world clinical settings. Here we will focus on the impact of aging and discuss our attempts at connecting wires between the clinicians and engineers, including establishing Gerotech Incubators to foster collaboration between Geriatricians and Engineers.
Bio: Dr. Peter Abadir is an assistant professor of medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. His area of clinical expertise is geriatric medicine.
After receiving his medical degree from the University of Al Fateh, Dr. Abadir completed his residency in family medicine at the University of Kentucky College of Medicine. He performed his fellowship in geriatric medicine and gerontology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.
Dr. Abadir’s research interests include changes in the renin angiotensin aldosterone system with aging, signal transduction and the role of the cross talk between angiotensin II receptor in aging, and understanding the role of angiotensin II in the development of vascular aging.
He has been recognized by the Hopkins Department of Medicine with the W. Leigh Thompson Excellence in Research Award. He is a member of the American Geriatrics Society and The Gerontological Society of America.