February ’07 Newsletter

Dear Members and Friends of CITRIS,

New Year began on a very sad note, as we learned of the death of our
colleague and our friend, Richard Newton. As Dean of the College of
Engineering at UC Berkeley, Rich was a visionary leader whose belief in
technology's ability to alleviate human suffering was a driving force
in CITRIS's creation. He was also one of our greatest champions. We
joined with our friends in the College of Engineering on February 11
for A Celebration of the Life of Richard Newton, which was both moving and inspiring.

we mourn our loss, we also take comfort in knowing that Rich's legacy
continues in the important work we are doing here at CITRIS, and in the
research and activities he inspired. One such activity is the subject
of our first feature. Big Ideas, a UC Berkeley campus initiative
started by Tom Kalil, Special Assistant to the Chancellor for Science
and Technology, is providing students with the resources they need to
change the world and giving people like you an easy way to donate and
help them achieve those goals.

Our second feature
looks at an inspiring collaboration between CITRIS's former director
Ruzena Bajcsy and Lisa Wymore, an assistant professor in Berkeley's
dance department. Wymore is using Bajcsy's tele-immersion lab to
explore new possibilities in the realm of dance. At the same time,
Bajcsy and her team are learning from the dancers what scientists need
to do to improve the technology. Their group, the Resonance Project,
calls this pioneering approach "performance as research." We were
honored to present their first performance at our holiday party in

As always, we thank you for your interest
in and support of the work we are doing here at CITRIS. We welcome your
comments and ideas.

Professor Shankar Sastry
Center for Information Technology Research in the Interest of Society

Berkeley selected to lead BP Energy Research Consortium
UC Berkeley has been selected by BP to lead a $500 Million biofuel research effort.
UC Berkeley, in partnership with LBNL and the University of Illinois at
Urbana-Champaign, will lead an unprecedented $500 million over ten
years research effort to develop new sources of energy and reduce the
impact of energy consumption on the environment. The Energy Biosciences
Institute (EBI) initially will focus its research on biotechnology to
produce biofuels — that is, turning plants and plant materials,
including corn, field waste, switchgrass and algae, into transportation

Steve Kang named new UC Merced chancellor
UC Santa Cruz engineering dean Sung-Mo (Steve) Kang has been appointed
chancellor of UC Merced. Kang replaces Carol Tomlinson-Keasey, who
stepped down last summer after seven years to return to teaching and
scholarship. http://www.universityofcalifornia.edu/news/2007/jan17.html

CITRIS Asia Research Symposium, Taiwan
Our next CITRIS-Asia research symposium will be held on March 27 in
Barry Lam Hall at National Taiwan University in Taipei. Faculty members
will give technical talks throughout the day, presenting their findings
and holding discussion sessions in key areas, such as wireless
computing, electronic design automation and digital houses and
security. http://www.citris-uc.org/Taiwan-2007

CITRIS professors to draft new California fuel policy
Daniel Sperling (UC Davis), and Alex Farrell (UC Berkeley).
Dan Sperling, director of UC Davis' Institute of Transportation
Studies, and Alex Farrell, assistant professor in the UC Berkeley
Energy and Resources Group are drafting a low-carbon fuel standard for
the State of California. The new fuel standard, which will be the first
such policy in the world, is part of California Governor Arnold
Schwarzenegger’s goal to require manufacturers to cut the carbon
content of fuels sold in California by at least 10 percent by 2020.

ESEM Certificate Program launched at UC Berkeley
UC Berkeley has a new certificate program in Engineering for
Sustainability and Environmental Management (ESEM) to train graduate
students to work across boundaries to achieve sustainable solutions to
pressing societal problems.

Online Marketplace to Support Student Projects
UC Berkeley has launched an online marketplace that allows donors to
make a targeted donation to support a specific student project.