News & Events

132 Events and Talks were found.


  •  EVENT   MERL intern recruiting and cupcakes
    Date & Time: Wednesday, November 6, 2013; 1:00 PM - 3:00 PM
    MERL Contact: Matthew Brand
    Location: MIT, Kiva room @CSAIL
    Brief
    • Every year, MIT neighbor Mitsubishi Electric Research Labs hires 40-60 talented and motivated graduate students for summer internships in CS/EE-oriented research projects, aimed at real-world impact and high-quality publications. Join us for our kick-off recruiting reception at the Kiva/Patel room Wednesday 1-3pm. There will be a short overview of current research areas, confections, and MERL researchers on hand to discuss research opportunities.
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  •  EVENT   SANE 2013 - Speech and Audio in the Northeast
    Date & Time: Thursday, October 24, 2013; 8:45 AM - 5:00 PM
    MERL Contacts: Jonathan Le Roux; John Hershey
    Location: Columbia University
    Research Areas: Multimedia, Speech & Audio
    Brief
    • SANE 2013, a one-day event gathering researchers and students in speech and audio from the Northeast of the American continent, will be held on Thursday October 24, 2013 at Columbia University, in New York City.

      A follow-up to SANE 2012 held in October 2012 at MERL in Cambridge, MA, this year's SANE will be held in conjunction with the WASPAA workshop, held October 20-23 in upstate New York. WASPAA attendees are welcome and encouraged to attend SANE.

      SANE 2013 will feature invited speakers from the Northeast, as well as from the international community. It will also feature a lively poster session during lunch time, open to both students and researchers.

      SANE 2013 is organized by Prof. Dan Ellis (Columbia University), Jonathan Le Roux (MERL) and John R. Hershey (MERL).
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  •  TALK   The Wireless Control Network: A New Approach For Control Over Networks
    Date & Time: Friday, October 18, 2013; 12:00 PM
    Speaker: Dr. Shreyas Sundaram, University of Waterloo
    MERL Host: Mouhacine Benosman
    Research Area: Mechatronics
    Brief
    • This talk will describe a method to stabilize a plant with a network of resource-constrained wireless nodes. As opposed to traditional networked control schemes where the nodes simply route information to and from a dedicated controller, our approach treats the network itself as the controller. Specifically, we formulate a strategy where each node repeatedly updates its state to be a linear combination of the states of neighboring nodes. We show that this causes the entire network to behave as a linear dynamical system, with sparsity constraints imposed by the network topology. We provide a numerical design procedure to determine the appropriate linear combinations for each node so that the transmissions of the nodes closest to the actuators are stabilizing. We also make connections to decentralized control theory and the concept of fixed modes to provide topological conditions under which stabilization is possible. We show that this "Wireless Control Network" requires low computational and communication overhead, simplifies transmission scheduling, and enables compositional design. We also consider the issue of security in this control scheme. Using structured system theory, we show that a certain number of malicious or misbehaving nodes can be detected and identified provided that the connectivity of the network is sufficiently high.
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  •  TALK   Efficiently sampling wave fields
    Date & Time: Thursday, October 17, 2013; 12:00 PM
    Speaker: Prof. Laurent Daudet, Paris Diderot University, France
    MERL Host: Jonathan Le Roux
    Research Areas: Multimedia, Speech & Audio
    Brief
    • In acoustics, one may wish to acquire a wavefield over a whole spatial domain, while we can only make point measurements (ie, with microphones). Even with few sources, this remains a difficult problem because of reverberation, which can be hard to characterize. This can be seen as a sampling / interpolation problem, and it raises a number of interesting questions: how many sample points are needed, where to choose the sampling points, etc. In this presentation, we will review some case studies, in 2D (vibrating plates) and 3D (room acoustics), with numerical and experimental data, where we have developed sparse models, possibly with additional 'structures', based on a physical modeling of the acoustic field. These type of models are well suited to reconstruction techniques known as compressed sensing. These principles can also be used for sub-nyquist optical imaging : we will show preliminary experimental results of a new compressive imager, remarkably simple in its principle, using a multiply scattering medium.
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  •  TALK   Embedded Vision R&D at Texas Instruments
    Date & Time: Friday, October 4, 2013; 12:00 PM
    Speaker: Dr. Goksel Dedeoglu, Texas Instruments
    Research Area: Computer Vision
    Brief
    • There are growing needs to accelerate computer vision algorithms on embedded processors for wide-ranging equipment including mobile phones, network cameras, robots, and automotive safety systems. In our Vision R&D group, we conduct various projects to understand how the vision requirements can be best addressed on Digital Signal Processors (DSP), where the compute bottlenecks are, and how we should evolve our hardware & software architectures to meet our customers' future needs. Towards this end, we build prototypes wherein we design and optimize embedded software for real-world application performance and robustness. In this talk, I will provide examples of vision problems that we have recently tackled.
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  •  TALK   Design of Active Inputs for Set-Based Fault Diagnosis
    Date & Time: Friday, September 6, 2013; 12:00 PM
    Speaker: Dr. Davide M. Raimondo, University of Pavia, Italy
    MERL Host: Stefano Di Cairano
    Research Area: Mechatronics
    Brief
    • Although there are many fault diagnosis algorithms available, there has been very little work on the design or modification of control inputs with the aim of increasing the detectability and isolability of faults. The use of such inputs has clear potential for overcoming a central difficulty in fault detection, which is to distinguish the effects of faults from those of disturbances, process uncertainties, etc. Accordingly, the use of active inputs could be a transformative technology in industry, provided that such inputs can be computed reliably and efficiently.
      This presentation discusses new methods for computing active inputs that guarantee that the input-output data of a process will be sufficient to correctly identify a fault from a given library of possible faults. This problem is inherently nonconvex and has a combinatorial dependence on the number of faults considered. To address this, a new formulation is considered, along with related approximations, that is amenable to efficient solution using standard optimization packages (e.g. CPLEX). The theoretical contributions combine ideas from reachability analysis, set-based computations, and optimization theory to exploit detailed problem structure and thereby manage the problem complexity. Comparisons with an existing method show that the proposed formulation provides a dramatic reduction in the required computational effort.
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  •  TALK   Decoupling Systems By Design
    Date & Time: Friday, August 23, 2013; 12:00 PM
    Speaker: Dr Cornel Sultan, Virginia Tech
    Research Area: Mechatronics
    Brief
    • Coordinate coupling raises serious numerical, analysis, and control design problems that grow with the size of the system. On the other hand, decoupled dynamic equations facilitate all of the above processes since each equation can be treated independently. Unfortunately, due to the inherent heterogeneity typical of most practical, complex systems, these are not naturally decoupled so developing accurate enough decoupled approximations is of interest.

      In this talk the issue of building such accurate decoupled approximations is addressed by leveraging concepts from robust control theory. Specifically, system gains (e.g. energy gain, peak to peak gain) are used to characterize the approximation error. Then some system parameters are selected to minimize this approximation error. The advantage of using system gains is that the decoupling approximation is guaranteed to be accurate over an entire class of signals (e.g. finite energy/finite peak signals). These ideas are illustrated on linearized models of tensegrity structures which are designed to yield accurate decoupled models with respect to all signals of finite energy and finite peak. Further analysis corrects several misconceptions regarding decoupling, system properties, and control design.
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  •  EVENT   IEEE Transactions on Image Processing, Special Issue on 3D Representation, Compression & Rendering
    Date: Thursday, August 1, 2013
    MERL Contact: Anthony Vetro
    Research Area: Multimedia
    Brief
    • Anthony Vetro is Guest Editor for the Special Issue on 3D Representation, Compression & Rendering of the IEEE Transactions on Image Processing.
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  •  TALK   A Dirichlet Process Mixture Model for Clustering of Household Electricity Load Profiles
    Date & Time: Tuesday, July 30, 2013; 12:00 PM
    Speaker: Ramon Granell, Oxford University
    MERL Host: Daniel Nikovski
    Research Area: Data Analytics
    Brief
    • We show that real electricity-use patterns can be distinguished using a Bayesian nonparametric model based on the Dirichlet Process Mixture Model. By modelling the load profiles as discrete counters we make use of the Dirichlet-Multinomial distribution. Clusters are computed with the Chinese Restaurant Process method and posterior probabilities distributions estimated with a Gibbs sampling algorithm.
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  •  TALK   Topics in Intelligent Building Systems Control
    Date & Time: Tuesday, July 23, 2013; 12:00 PM
    Speaker: Dr. Sandipan Mishra, Renssealer Polytechnic Institute
    MERL Host: Stefano Di Cairano
    Research Area: Mechatronics
    Brief
    • This talk will present the breadth of research activities in the Intelligent Systems, Automation & Control Laboratory at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, ranging from building systems control to additive manufacturing and adaptive optics. In particular, we will focus on the modeling and control design paradigms for intelligent building systems and smart LED lighting systems. Since building systems have substantial variability of occupancy, usage, ambient environment, and physical properties over time, strategies for "model-free" control algorithms for building temperature control will be illustrated. The seminar will also discuss the state-of-the-art in feedback control of lighting systems and demonstrate the efficacy of distributed control and consensus type algorithms for these large-scale lighting systems. Finally, some interesting examples of bio-inspired estimation from blurry images for adaptive optics will be presented.
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  •  TALK   Challenges in Model-Based System Engineering: Past, Present and Future
    Date & Time: Tuesday, July 16, 2013; 12:00 PM
    Speaker: Dr. Michael Tiller, Xogeny
    MERL Host: Daniel Burns
    Research Area: Mechatronics
    Brief
    • Model-based System Engineering has been recognized, for some time, as a way for companies to improve their product development processes. However, change takes time in engineering and we still have only scratched the surface of what is possible. New ideas and technologies are constantly emerging that can improve a model-based approach. In this talk, I will discuss some of my past experiences with model-based system engineering in the automotive industry. I'll also discuss the shifts I see from numerical approaches to more symbolic approaches and how this manifests itself in a shift from imperative representations of engineering models to more declarative ones. I'll cover some of the interesting challenges I've seen trying to model automotive systems and how I think those challenges can be overcome moving forward. Finally, I'll talk about some of the exciting possibilities I see on the horizon for modeling.
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  •  EVENT   QoMEX 2013 - Fifth International Workshop on Quality of Multimedia Experience
    Date: Wednesday, July 3, 2013 - Friday, July 5, 2013
    MERL Contact: Anthony Vetro
    Location: Klagenfurt am Worthersee, Austria
    Research Area: Multimedia
    Brief
    • Anthony Vetro is the publicity chair for America of QoMEX 2013, the Fifth International Workshop on Quality of Multimedia Experience, to be held Klagenfurt am Worthersee, Austria, in July 2013.
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  •  EVENT   CCD/PROCAMS 2013 - IEEE 2nd Workshop of Computational Cameras and Displays
    Date & Time: Friday, June 28, 2013; 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
    Location: Portland, Oregon
    Research Area: Computer Vision
    Brief
    • Amit Agrawal is the co-organizer of the CCD/PROCAMS 2013 Workshop of Computational Cameras and Displays.
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  •  TALK   On distributed conflict resolution at road intersections
    Date & Time: Wednesday, June 26, 2013; 12:00 PM
    Speaker: Gabriel Rodrigues de Campos, Chalmers University
    MERL Host: Mouhacine Benosman
    Research Area: Mechatronics
    Brief
    • In this talk, we consider a scenario where several vehicles have to coordinate among them in order to cross a traffic intersection. Thus, the control problem relies on the optimization of global cost function while guaranteeing collision avoidance and the satisfaction of local constraints. We propose a decentralized solution, where vehicles sequentially solve local optimization problems allowing them to cross, in a safe way, the intersection. Such approach pays a special attention to how quantify the degrees of freedom that each vehicle disposes to avoid a potential collision and lead to an adequate formalism in which collision avoidance is enforced through local state constraints at given time instants. Finally, simulations results on the efficiency, performance and optimality of the proposed approach are presented at the end of the talk.
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  •  EVENT   CHiME 2013 - The 2nd International Workshop on Machine Listening in Multisource Environments
    Date & Time: Saturday, June 1, 2013; 9:00 AM - 6:00 PM
    MERL Contact: Jonathan Le Roux
    Location: Vancouver, Canada
    Research Areas: Multimedia, Speech & Audio
    Brief
    • MERL researchers Shinji Watanabe and Jonathan Le Roux are members of the organizing committee of CHiME 2013, the 2nd International Workshop on Machine Listening in Multisource Environments, Jonathan acting as Program Co-Chair. MERL is also a sponsor for the event.

      CHiME 2013 is a one-day workshop to be held in conjunction with ICASSP 2013 that will consider the challenge of developing machine listening applications for operation in multisource environments, i.e. real-world conditions with acoustic clutter, where the number and nature of the sound sources is unknown and changing over time. CHiME brings together researchers from a broad range of disciplines (computational hearing, blind source separation, speech recognition, machine learning) to discuss novel and established approaches to this problem. The cross-fertilisation of ideas will foster fresh approaches that efficiently combine the complementary strengths of each research field.
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  •  EVENT   ICASSP 2013 - Student Career Luncheon
    Date & Time: Thursday, May 30, 2013; 12:30 PM - 2:30 PM
    MERL Contacts: Anthony Vetro; Petros Boufounos; Jonathan Le Roux
    Location: Vancouver, Canada
    Research Areas: Multimedia, Speech & Audio
    Brief
    • MERL is a sponsor for the first ICASSP Student Career Luncheon that will take place at ICASSP 2013. MERL members will take part in the event to introduce MERL and talk with students interested in positions or internships.
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  •  TALK   Holistic Models for Visual Perception in Autonomous Systems
    Date & Time: Thursday, May 23, 2013; 12:00 PM
    Speaker: Prof. Raquel Urtasun, TTI-Chicago
    Research Area: Computer Vision
    Brief
    • The development of autonomous systems that can effectively assist people with everyday tasks is one of the grand challenges in modern computer science. Notable examples are personal robotics for the elderly and people with disabilities, as well as autonomous driving systems which can help decrease fatalities caused by traffic accidents. To achieve full autonomy, multiple perception tasks must be solved: Autonomous systems should sense the environment, recognize the 3D world and interact with it. While most approaches have tackled individual perceptual components in isolation, I believe that the next generation of perceptual systems should reason jointly about multiple tasks.

      In this talk I'll argue that there are four key aspects towards developing such holistic models: (i) learning, (ii) inference (iii) representation, and (iv) data. I'll describe efficient Markov random field learning and inference algorithms that exploit both the structure of the problem as well as parallel computation to achieve computational and memory efficiency. I'll demonstrate the effectiveness of our models on a wide variety of examples, and show representations and inference strategies that allow us to achieve state-of-the-art performance and result in several orders of magnitude speed-ups in a variety of challenging tasks, including 3D reconstruction, 3D layout parsing, object detection, semantic segmentation and free text exploitation for holistic visual recognition.
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  •  EVENT   ISCAS 2013 - IEEE International Symposium on Circuits & Systems
    Date: Sunday, May 19, 2013 - Thursday, May 23, 2013
    MERL Contact: Anthony Vetro
    Location: Beijing, China
    Research Area: Multimedia
    Brief
    • Anthony Vetro is the Demo Co-chair of ISCAS 2013, the IEEE International Symposium on Circuits & Systems, to be held in Beijing, China, in May 2013.
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  •  TALK   Application of Multi-scale Modeling and Approximation to Design Optimization of Heat Exchangers
    Date & Time: Wednesday, May 8, 2013; 12:00 PM
    Speaker: Vikrant Aute, University of Maryland
    MERL Host: Christopher Laughman
    Research Area: Data Analytics
    Brief
    • Heat exchangers are a key component in any air-conditioning, heat pumping and refrigeration system. These heat exchangers (aka evaporators, condensers, indoor units, outdoor units) not only contribute significantly to the total cost of the system but also contain the most refrigerant charge. There is a continued interest in improving the designs of heat exchangers and making them more compact while reducing the cost. Compact heat exchangers help improve system performance, reduce power consumption and lower the first costs. Due to the lower internal volume, they hold lower refrigerant charge which in turn results in lower environmental impact.

      In the simulation based design and optimization of compact heat exchangers, there are two main challenges. The first challenge arises from the use of computationally expensive analysis tools such as Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD). The second challenge is the effect of scales. The use of CFD tools can make the optimization infeasible due to computing and engineering resource limitations. Furthermore, during CFD analysis, certain simplifications are made to the computational domain such as simulating a small periodic segment of a given heat transfer surface. In this talk, three technologies are introduced that assist in addressing these issues. These technologies are (1) Approximation Assisted Optimization, (2) Parallel Parameterized CFD, and (3) Multi-scale modeling of heat exchangers. These technologies together help reduce the computational effort by more than 90% and engineering time by more than 50%. Two real world applications focusing on air-to-refrigerant and liquid-to-refrigerant heat exchangers will be discussed, that demonstrate the application of these technologies.
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  •  TALK   Practical kernel methods for automatic speech recognition
    Date & Time: Tuesday, May 7, 2013; 2:30 PM
    Speaker: Dr. Yotaro Kubo, NTT Communication Science Laboratories, Kyoto, Japan
    Research Areas: Multimedia, Speech & Audio
    Brief
    • Kernel methods are important to realize both convexity in estimation and ability to represent nonlinear classification. However, in automatic speech recognition fields, kernel methods are not widely used conventionally. In this presentation, I will introduce several attempts to practically incorporate kernel methods into acoustic models for automatic speech recognition. The presentation will consist of two parts. The first part will describes maximum entropy discrimination and its application to a kernel machine training. The second part will describes dimensionality reduction of kernel-based features.
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