On April 13, Assistant Professor Margareta Ackerman, Department of Computer Science, lectured at Stanford’s Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics on her algorithmic songwriting systems, a way for musicians to utilize artificial intelligence systems to aid creativity. Ackerman’s ALYSIA (Automated LYrical SongwrIting Application) generates and suggests melodies based on human-provided lyrics. A second system, MABLE, will develop lyrics in collaboration with humans.
Department of TV, Radio, Film and Theatre Professor Buddy Butler received a Black Legend Award, an award that celebrates the contributions and achievements of African Americans in the Bay Area, at a red-carpet gala held at the Hammer Theatre Center. The February event also served as a fundraiser to build the San José Black History Museum, Silicon Valley. The recipient of numerous honors during his career, Butler has also been recognized with an Obie, the NAACP Trailblazer Award and the Black Theatre Networks Winona Fletcher Award for Outstanding Achievement and Excellence in Black Theatre.
Photographs of women in cocktail dresses from the 1950s, taken by Barbara Christiansen, former Department of Home Economics professor, are part of the current exhibition at History Park’s McKay Gallery titled “Fashion to Die for: A Shopper’s Dilemma.” The exhibit was designed to showcase some of the perils of fashion for both animals and humans.
High Country News profiled Department of Meteorology Associate Professor Craig Clements and Assistant Professor Neil Lareau in an extensive article on the dangers of erratic wildfires, the history of some of the worst U.S. wildfires and the new technologies that are helping fire meteorologists like Clements and Lareau better predict their behavior. Read more online.
Professor Emeritus Gary Greene, Moss Landing Marine Labs, current marine geologist at the SeaDoc Tombolo Mapping Lab on Orcas Island, was this month’s featured speaker at a lecture series hosted by Friends of Skagit Beaches. His topic, “Exploring the Salish Sea Floor,” covered the impact of tsunamis and earthquakes on marine habitats and the feeding patterns of marine birds, fish and mammals.
In March, John Lipp, former faculty member in the Continuing Education Program, assumed the post of acting director of the Friends of the Alameda Animal Shelter. He also serves as executive director of Court Appointed Special Advocates, an organization that advocates for abused and neglected children. Past positions include board president of the Humane Society of Silicon Valley and president/CEO of San Francisco’s Pets Are Wonderful Support (PAWS).
Douglas Metz, instructor in the Department of Health Science and Recreation for nine years, joined CenCal Health’s Board of Directors. He is also current deputy director of primary care/family health at the Santa Barbara County Public Health Department. For 16 years, he was a practicing podiatric physician and surgeon in San José.
As part of the Fay Jones School of Architecture and Design lecture series at the University of Arkansas – Fayetteville, Associate Professor Virginia San Fratello, Department of Design, gave a talk titled “Data + Dust” on the development of materials for three-dimensional printing and the design and fabrication of 3D printed architecture. San Fratello is a partner at Rael San Fratello and co-founder of Emerging Objects, both firms headquartered in Oakland. In 2016, she was named Educator of the Year by the International Interior Design Association (IIDA).
Lecturer Jason Wozniak, American Studies Program, co-organized “You Are Not a Loan,” a two-day campus event to address the impact of financial debt on students’ lives and possible solutions to the problem through a series of lectures, panel discussions and workshops. “We are living in a time where it’s increasingly normal for students to take on tens of thousands of dollars in debt just to get an education. There is nothing normal or ethical about that, and yet, being an indebted student has been normalized,” Wozniak said. As part of the program, student debt experts from Stanford, Iowa State and San Diego State addressed indebtedness from the perspectives of philosophy, comparative literature, economics, art, politics and education studies.