Professor honored with IBM award

first_imgEarlier this month, IBM awarded its Watson Solutions Faculty Award to Notre Dame computer science professor Nitesh Chawla. The IBM award recognizes the work of faculty on the forefront of big data and analytics and applying that work to social problems as well as incorporating it into curriculum, according to a University press release. Chawla, who currently serves as director of both the Interdisciplinary Center of Network Science and Applications and the Data, Interference, Analytic and Learning Lab, was honored for his work with the research of big data and healthcare innovation to examine possible solutions for the future of the healthcare field. “Big data is becoming a cornerstone of the modern economy,” he said. “A lot of my research has been around data, data mining, machine learning, network science and applications, and so my Watson Faculty Award was a recognition of that work and a recognition of the curriculum.” Chawla created a multidisciplinary course at Notre Dame called Healthcare Analytics, which uses his research ideas in part as a basis for the curriculum and includes majors from multiple colleges, he said. “It may be one of the more multidisciplinary courses on campus,” Chawla said. “Students from each discipline then are focused on how we can think about data and healthcare, how data in healthcare can lead to more personalized healthcare, more cost-effective healthcare.” The South Bend healthcare community has been responsive to the research and the class, Chawla said, and many local leaders in the industry have worked with the class, including executives from Michiana Health Information Network and the chief information officer of Beacon Health System. Chawla said this kind of outside interest and involvement is important to the class as well as demonstrating why IBM was so interested in his work, especially with the creation of its new initiative, the artificial intelligence machine known as Watson. IBM popularized its Watson machine by pitting it against top human competitors on the television game show “Jeopardy!”, but its capabilities are much greater than that, Chawla said. “[The class] is sort of emblematic of the work that Watson is doing. The machine is a cognitive system which brings in data and information from a variety of sources, processes it and delivers it in a viable form,” Chawla said. “That’s what we are trying to create in the classroom environment, where you have people from different disciplines, different backgrounds, different expertise working on projects together and then delivering it in a way that would make a difference to healthcare.” The class is split up into several groups that work on semester-long projects with the goal of operating at the intersection of medicine and big data research, Chawla said. Project topics include studying patient scheduling issues, readmission rates and global health partnerships. Contact Kevin Noonan at knoonan2@nd.edulast_img read more

Wenger: Ozil deserves more credit

first_imgArsenal boss Arsene Wenger insists Mesut Ozil is judged unfairly, but accepts he will never excel in defence. Wenger insists Germany supporters have similar misgivings, but believes his vision should receive greater recognition. “Ozil came back to us after the World Cup on August 11 and will be at his best after three or four weeks,” the Gunners boss said. “People are very harsh on Ozil because he’s a player who is easy with his play. “He will never be a tackler, but he’s not getting enough praise. “He came back a World Cup winner and he played seven games out of the seven in Brazil. “There’s been the same debate about him in Germany, but he was always in the team in the World Cup.” Wenger enthuses about Ozil’s technical brilliance and vision. “When you watch his game back the next day you think ‘what a player’,” Wenger said. Ozil has played twice since helping Germany lift the World Cup and was involved in the build-up to Alexis Sanchez’s goal against Besiktas that guaranteed a place in the group stage of the Champions League. The 25-year-old playmaker is capable of producing moments of genius, but his languid style can frustrate Arsenal fans who accuse him of drifting in and out of games. “Everything he does is intelligent and the timing of absolutely everything he does is absolutely perfect. “You never catch him giving the ball too late. The number of players you catch giving the ball too late is unbelievable. You never get that with Ozil. “He’s like a guy who plays music with perfect timing. There aren’t many players like that.” Wenger has denied reports that Ozil’s fellow World Cup winner Lukas Podolski will depart before Monday’s transfer deadline. However, Wenger does not view Podolski as the player to fill the lone striker role in the injury-enforced absence of Olivier Giroud. “Lukas can score goals, but he’s not a real centre forward. That’s what I believe,” Wenger said. “He’s a player on the flank or behind the striker, but is not a target man. “He likes to come to the ball and is a very good link player. He has a role to play. He won’t go out. “But at the moment I see Yaya Sanogo and Sanchez as players who can go in behind.” Press Associationlast_img read more