Archive for September, 2011

Back Seat Big Brother?

Nissan, EPFL Researchers Developing Technology That Would Allow Cars To Anticipate Drivers’ Next Moves.

AFP (9/29) reports, “Nissan and a Swiss university are developing cars that scan the driver’s thoughts and prepares the vehicle for the next move.”

Popular Science (9/29, Boyle) reports, “Using environmental and biometric indicators, cars will prepare themselves for an upcoming task the driver already has in mind, maybe slowing down to ready for a turn, or changing lanes in anticipation of a highway exit.” Popular Science reports, “It will use sensors embedded in the car, as well as brain activity and eye movement patterns, to anticipate what’s about to happen.” Swiss researchers said “their new system also uses statistical analysis to predict a driver’s intentions. It would conceivably work faster, so the car would know you’re thinking ‘turn left’ before you actually start actively thinking it.”

Reposted from the 9/29/11 ASEE First Bell

Richard Dawkins Talk

Famed British evolutionary biologist and author Richard Dawkins will speak Tuesday Oct. 4th at noon in the University of Virginia’s Old Cabell Hall auditorium. Dawkins, who is touring in support of his new book “The Magic of Reality” – which is scheduled to be released Tuesday – will lecture on the magic of science and discuss a range of natural phenomena. A book signing will follow the lecture.

“It’s a pleasure to welcome Professor Dawkins for another visit to U.Va.,” University Librarian Karin Wittenborg said. “His wit and intellect are inspiring, and we’re delighted we can bring students, faculty and visitors together for this lecture.”
The University of Virginia Library is sponsoring the event. Co-sponsors are the College of Arts & Sciences, the University Bookstore and the School of Medicine.

General admission tickets are available for free from the U.Va. Arts Box Office, located in the lobby of the Drama Building at 109 Culbreth Road, and must be picked up in person weekdays from noon to 5 p.m. Tickets are limited to two per person.

Dawkins – an atheist and humanist who has been outspoken in his criticism of both creationism and intelligent design theory – was the inaugural holder of the Charles Simonyi Professorship of the Public Understanding of Science at Oxford University, a position he held from 1995 to 2008. He is the author of several bestsellers, including “The Selfish Gene,” “The Blind Watchmaker,” “The God Delusion” and “The Magic of Reality.”

He last spoke at U.Va. in 2009 before a standing-room-only audience in Gilmer Hall Auditorium.

— By Rob Seal
Reposted from the 9/29/11 UVa Today

Mathematica Technical Talks

Just a quick note to let you know I will be on campus to give two Mathematica technical talks on Thursday, October 13. If you haven’t seen Mathematica lately, you will be surprised to see how suitable Mathematica is for projects and course examples in any STEM, business and economics, or liberal arts field.

My talks are given 100% in Mathematica, and a big part of what I want to discuss is the exciting new free-form input in Mathematica 8. Here’s a quick video preview:


“Mathematica in Education and Research”

9-9:50am & 10-10:50am, including Q&A

Room 214, Mechanical Engineering Bldg., UVA

Attendees with no prior experience report that these talks help with getting started using Mathematica language and workflow.

All attendees will receive an electronic copy of the examples, which can be adapted to individual projects.

Please feel free to pass this invitation on to colleagues and students–please let me know if you plan to attend, so I can make sure we have enough space. I look forward to meeting you!


Andy Dorsett

Wolfram Research, Inc.

1-800-965-3726 ext. 3495

fax: 217-398-1108

RefWorks Webinars

If you use the RefWorks bibliographic management tool and want to learn more about the new features in version 2.0 — or if you’re just curious about RefWorks and would like to learn more about it — you can attend any of a variety of Webinars describing RefWorks and its features during the next few weeks.

The September line-up of Webinars includes the following:

1)      RefWorks Administration Functions (75 minutes)
2)      RefShare 2.0 (45 minutes)
3)      Write-N-Cite III for Windows (45 minutes)
4)      How to teach RefWorks 2.0  in 15 Minutes
5)      Beyond Direct Export: Five Other Ways to Import Information to RefWorks (30 minutes)
6)      Using RefWorks to Quickly Import Citations and Write a Paper (30 minutes)
7)      Gather and Organize your Research Sources in RefWorks-Part 1 (30 minutes)
8)      Gather and Organize your Research Sources in RefWorks-Part 2 (30 minutes)

Visit the the RefWorks-COS Training Webinars website ( ) to view a list of RefWorks Live and Recorded Webinar programs. Registration is limited and enrollment is required. RefWorks also maintains an RSS feed to their webinars on this web page.

For additional information about RefWorks and other citation management tools, come by any library service desk or check out our web page at

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September 2011