News & Events

1,178 News items, Awards, Events and Talks related to MERL and its staff.


  •  TALK   Driver's mental workload estimation based on the reflex eye movement
    Date & Time: Tuesday, March 15, 2016; 12:45 PM - 1:30 PM
    Speaker: Prof. Hirofumi Aoki, Nagoya University
    MERL Host: Shinji Watanabe
    Research Areas: Multimedia, Speech & Audio
    Brief
    • Driving requires a complex skill that is involved with the vehicle itself (e.g., speed control and instrument operation), other road users (e.g., other vehicles, pedestrians), surrounding environment, and so on. During driving, visual cues are the main source to supply information to the brain. In order to stabilize the visual information when you are moving, the eyes move to the opposite direction based on the input to the vestibular system. This involuntary eye movement is called as the vestibulo-ocular reflex (VOR) and the physiological models have been studied so far. Obinata et al. found that the VOR can be used to estimate mental workload. Since then, our research group has been developing methods to quantitatively estimate mental workload during driving by means of reflex eye movement. In this talk, I will explain the basic mechanism of the reflex eye movement and how to apply for mental workload estimation. I also introduce the latest work to combine the VOR and OKR (optokinetic reflex) models for naturalistic driving environment.
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  •  TALK   A data-centric approach to driving behavior research: How can signal processing methods contribute to the development of autonomous driving?
    Date & Time: Tuesday, March 15, 2016; 12:00 PM - 12:45 PM
    Speaker: Prof. Kazuya Takeda, Nagoya University
    MERL Host: Shinji Watanabe
    Research Areas: Multimedia, Speech & Audio
    Brief
    • Thanks to advanced "internet of things" (IoT) technologies, situation-specific human behavior has become an area of development for practical applications involving signal processing. One important area of development of such practical applications is driving behavior research. Since 1999, I have been collecting driving behavior data in a wide range of signal modalities, including speech/sound, video, physical/physiological sensors, CAN bus, LIDAR and GNSS. The objective of this data collection is to evaluate how well signal models can represent human behavior while driving. In this talk, I would like to summarize our 10 years of study of driving behavior signal processing, which has been based on these signal corpora. In particular, statistical signal models of interactions between traffic contexts and driving behavior, i.e., stochastic driver modeling, will be discussed, in the context of risky lane change detection. I greatly look forward to discussing the scalability of such corpus-based approaches, which could be applied to almost any traffic situation.
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  •  TALK   Emotion Detection for Health Related Issues
    Date & Time: Tuesday, February 16, 2016; 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM
    Speaker: Dr. Najim Dehak, MIT
    MERL Host: Shinji Watanabe
    Research Areas: Multimedia, Speech & Audio
    Brief
    • Recently, there has been a great increase of interest in the field of emotion recognition based on different human modalities, such as speech, heart rate etc. Emotion recognition systems can be very useful in several areas, such as medical and telecommunications. In the medical field, identifying the emotions can be an important tool for detecting and monitoring patients with mental health disorder. In addition, the identification of the emotional state from voice provides opportunities for the development of automated dialogue system capable of producing reports to the physician based on frequent phone communication between the system and the patients. In this talk, we will describe a health related application of using emotion recognition system based on human voices in order to detect and monitor the emotion state of people.
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  •  NEWS   John Hershey gives invited talk at Johns Hopkins University on MERL's "Deep Clustering" breakthrough
    Date: March 4, 2016
    Where: Johns Hopkins Center for Language and Speech Processing
    MERL Contacts: John R. Hershey; Jonathan Le Roux; Shinji Watanabe
    Research Areas: Multimedia, Speech & Audio
    Brief
    • MERL researcher and speech team leader, John Hershey, was invited by the Center for Language and Speech Processing at Johns Hopkins University to give a talk on MERL's breakthrough audio separation work, known as "Deep Clustering". The talk was entitled "Speech Separation by Deep Clustering: Towards Intelligent Audio Analysis and Understanding," and was given on March 4, 2016.

      This is work conducted by MERL researchers John Hershey, Jonathan Le Roux, and Shinji Watanabe, and MERL interns, Zhuo Chen of Columbia University, and Yusef Isik of Sabanci University.
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  •  NEWS   MERL Researchers Demonstrate 1Tbps Optical Transceiver
    Date: March 1, 2016
    Where: Tokyo, Japan
    MERL Contact: Kieran Parsons
    Research Areas: Electronics & Communications, Optical Communications & Devices, Signal Processing
    Brief
    • MERL optical transceiver technology that enables 1 Terabit per second communication speed was reported at a recent press release event in Tokyo. Please see the link below for the full Mitsubishi Electric press release text.
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  •  NEWS   MERL contributes to Mitsubishi Electric's Indoor Positioning System
    Date: March 1, 2016
    Where: Tokyo, Japan
    MERL Contact: Philip V. Orlik
    Research Areas: Electronics & Communications, Wireless Communications & Signal Processing
    Brief
    • MERL EC researchers assisted in the development of an indoor positioning system with WiFi and acoustic based ranging technologies. Please see the link below for the full Mitsubishi Electric press release.
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  •  NEWS   MERL researcher invited to speak at the Institute for Mathematics and its Applications (IMA)
    Date: March 14, 2016 - March 18, 2016
    Where: Institute for Mathematics and its Applications
    MERL Contact: Mouhacine Benosman
    Research Areas: Multimedia, Dynamical Systems
    Brief
    • Mouhacine Benosman will give an invited talk about reduced order models stabilization at the next IMA workshop 'Computational Methods for Control of Infinite-dimensional Systems'.
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  •  AWARD   Professor Emeritus University of Colorado Denver
    Date: January 6, 2016
    Awarded to: Andrew Knyazev
    MERL Contact: Andrew Knyazev
    Research Area: Algorithms
    Brief
    • Andrew Knyazev is awarded the title of Professor Emeritus at the University of Colorado Denver effective 1/31/2016. The award letter from the Chancellor of the University of Colorado Denver provides examples of the record of excellence over 20 years of contributions to the university such as 2008 CU Denver Excellence in Research Award, 2000 Teaching Excellence Award for the college, supervision of Ph.D. students, and two decades of uninterrupted external research funding from the US National Science Foundation and Department of Energy.
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  •  NEWS   MERL researcher, Oncel Tuzel, gives keynote talk at 2016 International Symposium on Visual Computing
    Date: December 14, 2015 - December 16, 2015
    Where: Las Vegas, NV, USA
    Research Areas: Computer Vision, Machine Learning, Decision Optimization
    Brief
    • MERL researcher, Oncel Tuzel, gave a keynote talk at 2016 International Symposium on Visual Computing in Las Vegas, Dec. 16, 2015. The talk was titled: "Machine vision for robotic bin-picking: Sensors and algorithms" and reviewed MERL's research in the application of 2D and 3D sensing and machine learning to the problem of general pose estimation.

      The talk abstract was: For over four years, at MERL, we have worked on the robot "bin-picking" problem: using a 2D or 3D camera to look into a bin of parts and determine the pose, 3D rotation and translation, of a good candidate to pick up. We have solved the problem several different ways with several different sensors. I will briefly describe the sensors and the algorithms. In the first half of the talk, I will describe the Multi-Flash camera, a 2D camera with 8 flashes, and explain how this inexpensive camera design is used to extract robust geometric features, depth edges and specular edges, from the parts in a cluttered bin. I will present two pose estimation algorithms, (1) Fast directional chamfer matching--a sub-linear time line matching algorithm and (2) specular line reconstruction, for fast and robust pose estimation of parts with different surface characteristics. In the second half of the talk, I will present a voting-based pose estimation algorithm applicable to 3D sensors. We represent three-dimensional objects using a set of oriented point pair features: surface points with normals and boundary points with directions. I will describe a max-margin learning framework to identify discriminative features on the surface of the objects. The algorithm selects and ranks features according to their importance for the specified task which leads to improved accuracy and reduced computational cost.
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  •  AWARD   MERL's Speech Team Achieves World's 2nd Best Performance at the Third CHiME Speech Separation and Recognition Challenge
    Date: December 15, 2015
    Awarded to: John R. Hershey, Takaaki Hori, Jonathan Le Roux and Shinji Watanabe
    MERL Contacts: John R. Hershey; Takaaki Hori; Jonathan Le Roux; Shinji Watanabe
    Research Areas: Multimedia, Speech & Audio
    Brief
    • The results of the third 'CHiME' Speech Separation and Recognition Challenge were publicly announced on December 15 at the IEEE Automatic Speech Recognition and Understanding Workshop (ASRU 2015) held in Scottsdale, Arizona, USA. MERL's Speech and Audio Team, in collaboration with SRI, ranked 2nd out of 26 teams from Europe, Asia and the US. The task this year was to recognize speech recorded using a tablet in real environments such as cafes, buses, or busy streets. Due to the high levels of noise and the distance from the speaker's mouth to the microphones, this is very challenging task, where the baseline system only achieved 33.4% word error rate. The MERL/SRI system featured state-of-the-art techniques including multi-channel front-end, noise-robust feature extraction, and deep learning for speech enhancement, acoustic modeling, and language modeling, leading to a dramatic 73% reduction in word error rate, down to 9.1%. The core of the system has since been released as a new official challenge baseline for the community to use.
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  •  AWARD   2015 IEEE Signal Processing Society Best Paper Award
    Date: December 1, 2015
    Awarded to: Mark A. Davenport, Petros T. Boufounos, Michael B. Wakin and Richard G. Baraniuk
    MERL Contact: Petros T. Boufounos
    Research Areas: Multimedia, Computational Sensing
    Brief
    • Petros Boufounos is a recipient of the 2015 IEEE Signal Processing Society Best Paper Award for the paper that he co-authored with Mark A. Davenport, Michael B. Wakin and Richard G. Baraniuk on "Signal Processing with Compressive Measurements" which was published in the April 2010 issue of IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Signal Processing. The Best Paper Award honors the author(s) of a paper of exceptional merit dealing with a subject related to the Society's technical scope, and appearing in one of the Society's solely owned transactions or the Journal of Selected Topics in Signal Processing. Eligibility is based on a five-year window: for example, for the 2015 Award, the paper must have appeared in one of the Society's Transactions between January 1, 2010 and December 31, 2014.
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  •  NEWS   MERL presented 3 papers at the 2015 IEEE Global Conference on Signal and Information Processing (GlobalSIP)
    Date: December 15, 2015
    Where: 2015 IEEE Global Conference on Signal and Information Processing (GlobalSIP)
    MERL Contacts: Andrew Knyazev; Hassan Mansour; Dong Tian
    Research Areas: Algorithms, Multimedia, Computer Vision, Machine Learning, Speech & Audio, Electronics & Communications, Signal Processing, Wireless Communications, Digital Video
    Brief
    • MERL researcher Andrew Knyazev gave 3 talks at the 2015 IEEE Global Conference on Signal and Information Processing (GlobalSIP). The papers were published in IEEE conference proceedings.
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  •  NEWS   MERL Researchers Attend Modelica North American Users Group Meeting
    Date: November 11, 2015 - November 12, 2015
    Where: University of Connecticut
    MERL Contacts: Christopher R. Laughman; Scott A. Bortoff; Hongtao Qiao
    Research Area: Data Analytics
    Brief
    • MERL Researchers Scott A. Bortoff, Chris Laughman and Hongtao Qiao attended the North America Modelica User's Group Meeting, hosted by the University of Connecticut, November 11-12, 2015. Scott Bortoff gave the Keynote Address entitled "Using Modelica in Industrial Research and Development," and Chris Laughman and Hongtao Qiao each presented a paper on modelling of HVAC systems. The Meeting attracted approximately 80 Modelica users from a diverse set of companies and universities including United Technologies, Johnson Controls and Ford. Use of Modelica is accelerating in North America, lead by largely by automotive and similar "systems manufacturing" type companies.
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  •  EVENT   MERL Researcher Leads an HVAC Industry Publicity Event
    Date: Friday, November 6, 2015
    MERL Contact: Christopher R. Laughman
    Location: Mitsubishi Electric Cooling & Heating
    Research Area: Data Analytics
    Brief
    • Chris Laughman of MERL and Kevin Miskewicz of MEUS-HVAC led a webinar on Friday, November 6 with over 20 leading HVAC industry trade publications on new products that are being released, as well as the role that MERL plays in advancing the forefront of technology within Mitsubishi Electric. Titled "Inventing the Future of VRF (and Other Neat Stuff)", they discussed the innovations embodied in the new L-generation City-Multi system, as well as trends in the HVAC industry and some recently published MERL research in the HVAC area.
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  •  NEWS   Stefano Di Cairano nominated to Chair the IEEE-Control System Society on Standards
    Date: November 4, 2015
    MERL Contact: Stefano Di Cairano
    Research Areas: Mechatronics, Advanced Control Systems
    Brief
    • Stefano Di Cairano has become Senior Member of IEEE. In addition, he has been asked by the Vice President for Technical Activities of the Control System Society (CSS) of IEEE to take the role of Chair of the Standing Committee on Standards. S. Di Cairano will succeed Dr. T. Samad, Honeywell, as chair of the committee. His nomination should be ratified by the IEEE-CSS Board of Governor at the meeting in Osaka, in December 2015.
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  •  NEWS   Teng-Yok Lee co-chairs Large Data Analysis and Visualization workshop
    Date: October 25, 2015
    Where: Large Data Analysis and Visualization (LDAV)
    MERL Contact: Teng-Yok Lee
    Research Area: Computer Vision
    Brief
    • Teng-Yok Lee served as the poster co-chair for the Large Data Analysis and Visualization (LDAV) workshop at IEEEVis 2015 in Chicago, Oct. 25-30. At IEEEVis there were over 2000 attendees and three highly competitive main subconferences (SciVis, InfoVis, and Visual Analytics and Technology (VAST)).
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  •  TALK   Skewness in the Passive Tracer Problem
    Date & Time: Monday, November 23, 2015; 12:00 PM
    Speaker: Manuchehr Aminian, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
    MERL Host: Andrew Knyazev
    Research Area: Algorithms
    Brief
    • The classic work by G.I. Taylor describes the enhanced longitudinal diffusivity of a passive tracer subjected to laminar pipe flow. Much work since then has gone into extending this result particularly in calculating the evolution of the scalar variance. However, less work has been done to describe the evolution of asymmetry in the distribution. We present the results from a modeling effort to understand how the higher moments of the tracer distribution depend on geometry based off of explicit results in the circular pipe. We do this via analysis of "channel-limiting" geometries (rectangular ducts and elliptical pipes parameterized by their aspect ratio), using both new analytical tools and Monte Carlo simulation, which have revealed a wealth of nontrivial behavior of the distributions at short and intermediate time.
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  •  AWARD   Fujisankei Newspaper Gold and Bronze Medal Advertisement Award
    Date: September 30, 2015
    Awarded to: Mitsubishi Electric Corp.
    MERL Contact: Yuichi Taguchi
    Research Area: Computer Vision
    Brief
    • Mitsubishi Electric Corp. (MELCO) advertisements based on 3D reconstruction received a Gold medal and a Bronze medal in the Fujisankei Newspaper. "Will I fit?", "He'll fit just fine.", and "Oops, did you think in 3D?".
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  •  NEWS   MERL researchers attend International Modelica Conference
    Date: September 21, 2015
    MERL Contacts: Scott A. Bortoff; Daniel J. Burns; Christopher R. Laughman
    Research Areas: Mechatronics, Data Analytics, Algorithms
    Brief
    • MERL researchers Scott Bortoff, Dan Burns and Chris Laughman attended the 11th Annual Modelica Conference in Versailles, France. Modelica is a computer language for modelling and simulation of multiphysical systems. There were 421 attendees, with representatives from Toyota, automobile companies, European universities and companies like Dassault. Conference topics included a plenary on cyber-physical systems modelling by Prof. Sangiovanni Vincentelli of UC Berkeley, new libraries for modelling HVAC systems, automobile systems and buildings, and research results for new solvers. An important trend is virtual modelling and simulation of building thermodynamics (scaling up to city districts), automotive systems (autonomous vehicles), and especially Factory Automation: Dassault is investing heavily in this area, focusing on smaller customers, with tools for 3D virtual modelling of assembly lines including machine dynamics (robotics), and in partnerships with Siemens and other European FA companies.
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  •  NEWS   MERL researchers presented 3 papers at the 5th IFAC Nonlinear Model Predictive Control Conference
    Date: September 17, 2015
    MERL Contacts: Stefano Di Cairano; Scott A. Bortoff; Abraham M. Goldsmith; Claus Danielson; Andrew Knyazev
    Research Areas: Mechatronics, Algorithms
    Brief
    • MERL researchers presented 3 papers at the 5th IFAC Nonlinear Model Predictive Control Conference. Approximately 150 attendees. Conference topics range from theory (existence, stability), to algorithms (optimization, design), to applications (process control, mechatronics, energy, automotive, aerospace). MERL was an industry sponsor for the conference. MERL researcher co-chaired the Industry Session on Industry perspective on Model Predictive Control. MERL researcher acted as Program Co-chair, organizing the conference program.
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