Title

Topic

  • ‘A Video-Based End-to-End Pipeline for Non-Nutritive Sucking Action Recognition and Segmentation in Young Infants’

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    “We present an end-to-end computer vision pipeline to detect non-nutritive sucking (NNS)—an infant sucking pattern with no nutrition delivered—as a potential biomarker for developmental delays, using off-the-shelf baby monitor video footage. One barrier to clinical (or algorithmic) assessment of NNS stems from its sparsity, requiring experts to wade through hours of footage to find minutes of relevant activity.” Find the paper and the full list of authors at ArXiv.

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  • ‘StudentEval: A Benchmark of Student-Written Prompts for Large Language Models of Code’

    “Code LLMs are being rapidly deployed and there is evidence that they can make professional programmers more productive. Current benchmarks for code generation measure whether models generate correct programs given an expert prompt. In this paper, we present a new benchmark containing multiple prompts per problem, written by a specific population of non-expert prompters: beginning programmers. StudentEval contains 1,749 prompts for 48 problems, written by 80 students who have only completed one semester of Python programming.” Find the paper and the full list of authors at ArXiv.

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  • ‘StarCoder: May the Source Be with You!’

    “The BigCode community, an open-scientific collaboration working on the responsible development of Large Language Models for Code (Code LLMs), introduces StarCoder and StarCoderBase. … StarCoderBase is trained on 1 trillion tokens sourced from The Stack, a large collection of permissively licensed GitHub repositories with inspection tools and an opt-out process. We fine-tuned StarCoderBase on 35B Python tokens, resulting in the creation of StarCoder. We perform the most comprehensive evaluation of Code LLMs to date and show that StarCoderBase outperforms every open Code LLM that supports multiple programming languages.” Find the paper and the full list of authors at ArXiv.

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  • ‘Pretraining Language Models with Human Preferences’

    “Language models (LMs) are pretrained to imitate internet text, including content that would violate human preferences if generated by an LM: falsehoods, offensive comments, personally identifiable information, low-quality or buggy code, and more. Here, we explore alternative objectives for pretraining LMs in a way that also guides them to generate text aligned with human preferences. We benchmark five objectives for pretraining with human feedback across three tasks and study how they affect the trade-off between alignment and capabilities of pretrained LMs.” Read the paper and see the full list of authors in ArXiv.

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  • Dean Abowd receives lifetime achievement award for work in human-computer interaction

    Dean Gregory Abowd received the Lifetime Achievement Award from SIGCHI, the premier conference on human-computer interaction. He later re-presented his award acceptance speech at an event on Northeastern’s Boston campus. Abowd hopes “to inspire others to dispel fear of the unknown and unlock their potential,” he says in the presentation abstract. “Life, like research, is best when shared with others whom you can respect and befriend.” Find the recorded speech on YouTube.

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  • ‘Problematic Advertising and its Disparate Exposure on Facebook’

    “Targeted advertising remains an important part of the free web browsing experience. … However, given the wide use of advertising, this also enables using ads as a vehicle for problematic content, such as scams or clickbait. … In this paper, we study Facebook—one of the internet’s largest ad platforms—and investigate key gaps in our understanding of problematic online advertising. … We categorize over 32,000 ads collected from this panel (n=132); and survey participants’ sentiments toward their own ads to identify four categories of problematic ads.” Read the paper and see the full list of authors in ArXiv.

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  • ‘Genome-Wide Phage Susceptibility Analysis in Acinetobacter Baumannii Reveals Capsule Modulation Strategies’

    “Phage have gained renewed interest as an adjunctive treatment for life-threatening infections with the resistant nosocomial pathogen Acinetobacter baumannii. Our understanding of how A. baumannii defends against phage remains limited. … We identified 41 candidate loci that increase susceptibility to Loki when disrupted, and 10 that decrease susceptibility. Combined with spontaneous resistance mapping, our results support the model that Loki uses the K3 capsule as an essential receptor, and that capsule modulation provides A. baumannii with strategies to control vulnerability to phage.” Find the paper and the full list of authors at PLOS Pathogens.

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  • ‘Dose-dependent effects of GAT107…: A BOLD phMRI and connectivity study on awake rats’

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    “Alpha 7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7nAChR) agonists have been developed to treat schizophrenia but failed in clinical trials due to rapid desensitization. GAT107, a type 2 allosteric agonist-positive allosteric modulator (ago-PAM) to the α7 nAChR was designed to activate the α7 nAChR while reducing desensitization. We hypothesized GAT107 would alter brain neural circuitry associated with cognition, emotion, and sensory perception.Methods: The present study used pharmacological magnetic resonance imaging (phMRI) to evaluate the dose-dependent effect of GAT107 on brain activity in awake male rats.” Read the paper and see the full list of authors at Frontiers in Neuroscience.

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  • Biodegradable nanogenerators lead to less electronic waste

    In “Aligned PLLA electrospun fibres based biodegradable triboelectric nanogenerator,” the authors present a new construction method for potential components in energy harvesters. These energy harvesters—like solar cells—”are not always developed using sustainable materials.” Creating components that are biodegradable could make these devices more environmentally friendly. “The presented approach,” the authors argue, “can provide attractive green energy harvesting machine to power portable devices at a large scale—without having to worry about the end-of-life electronic waste management.” Find the full list of authors in Nano Energy.

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  • ‘MSNetViews: Geographically Distributed Management of Enterprise Network Security Policy’

    “Commercially-available software defined networking (SDN) technologies will play an important role in protecting the on-premises resources that remain as enterprises transition to zero trust architectures. However, existing solutions assume the entire network resides in a single geographic location, requiring organizations with multiple sites to manually ensure consistency of security policy across all sites. In this paper, we present MSNetViews, which extends a single, globally-defined and managed, enterprise network security policy to many geographically distributed sites.” Read the paper and see the full list of authors at the Association for Computing Machinery.

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  • Using ‘recycled plastic as a building material’ on exhibit at 2023 Venice Biennale

    Assistant professor of architecture Ang Li exhibited work at the U.S. Pavilion of the 2023 Venice Biennale. Li’s work conducts “investigations into the use of recycled plastic as a building material and structural system.” Read more about Li’s work and the other invited artists at Archinect.

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  • ‘Embedding Cognition: Judgment and Choice in an Interdependent and Dynamic World’

    “Society is facing pressing interrelated, multilevel, and systemic challenges. Human consumption patterns are driving biodiversity loss and climate change, with unevenly distributed impacts that exacerbate preexisting inequalities. … Cognitive psychology … rarely links these microlevel processes and behaviors to network- and systems-level structures. … In this review, we urge researchers to move beyond a focus on static contexts and individual and group-level cognition to incorporate deeper theorizing about the temporal dynamics and feedbacks between individuals and the broader contexts in which they are embedded. ” Read the paper and see the full list of authors at Current Directions in Psychological Science.

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  • ‘Why We Should Care About Moral Foundations When Preparing for the Next Pandemic: Insights From Canada, the UK and the US’

    “Health behaviors that do not effectively prevent disease can negatively impact psychological wellbeing and potentially drain motivations to engage in more effective behavior, potentially creating higher health risk. Despite this, studies linking “moral foundations” (i.e., concerns about harm, fairness, purity, authority, ingroup, and/or liberty) to health behaviors have generally been limited to a narrow range of behaviors, specifically effective ones. We therefore explored the degree to which moral foundations predicted a wider range of not only effective but ineffective (overreactive) preventative behaviors during the COVID-19 pandemic.” Read the paper and see the full list of authors at PLOS ONE.

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  • ‘Resting-State MRI Functional Connectivity as a Neural Correlate of Multidomain Lifestyle Adherence’

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    “Prior research has demonstrated the importance of a healthy lifestyle to protect brain health and diminish dementia risk in later life. While a multidomain lifestyle provides an ecological perspective to voluntary engagement, its association with brain health is still under-investigated. … Self-reported exercise engagement, cognitive activity engagement, healthy diet adherence, and social activity engagement were included to examine potential phenotypes of an individual’s lifestyle adherence. … The features that show consistently high importance to the classification model were functional connectivity mainly between nodes located in different prior-defined functional networks.” Find the paper and the full list of authors in Scientific…

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  • Closas receives Best Paper in Track Award for work on signal jamming

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    “Associate Professor Pau Closas received the Best Paper in Track Award at the 2023 IEEE/ION Position, Location and Navigation Symposium (PLANS) for the work ‘Jammer Classification with Federated Learning,’ with electrical engineering students Peng Wu and Helena Calatrava, and Associate Research Scientist Tales Imbiriba.”

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  • Odom explains why companies need ‘a clear purpose’ to be effective

    “We’re in the middle of a pivotal moment where purpose, value and meaning are essential for business,” Curtis Odom, associate teaching professor of management and organizational development, writes. It’s vital that businesses identify “a clear purpose [that] can help a company differentiate itself from competitors, inspire and motivate employees, and build or maintain a strong brand identity.” Odom continues by describing how leaders can re-evaluate, and re-instill, purpose in their company and among their employees.

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  • ‘How Informal Entrepreneurship Impacts Innovation in Emerging Economies’

    “New ventures in emerging markets, initially created informally, suffer from costs that persist and constrain a firm’s ability to innovate even after they formalize their status. … Informally created new ventures are more likely to develop imitative rather than innovative new products. However, being acquired by other firms and improvements in the national innovation system can weaken the persistence of these informality costs. … The concept of internal imprinting … captures how the internal characteristics of a company result in the establishment of practices that persist over time.” Find the paper and the list of authors at the Insights @…

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  • ‘Attention to Emotional Stimuli Across Adulthood and Older Age: A Novel Application of Eye-Tracking Within the Home’

    “Previous research has used stationary eye-tracking in the lab to examine age differences in attentional deployment, showing that older adults display gaze patterns toward positive stimuli. … However, the lab environment may lead to different emotion regulation behavior among older adults compared to what they do in their everyday life. We, therefore, present the first use of stationary eye-tracking within participants’ homes to examine gaze patterns toward video clips of varying valence and to study age differences in emotional attention … in a more naturalistic environment.” Read the paper and see the full list of authors at APA PsycNet.

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  • ‘How Digitally Enhanced Autonomous Teams Make Chinese Companies More Agile’

    “Chinese companies are reinventing management through an approach called “digitally enhanced directed autonomy” (DEDA). DEDA uses digital platforms to give frontline employees direct access to corporate resources and capabilities, allowing them to organize themselves around business opportunities without managerial intervention. Autonomy is directed where it is needed and tracked. By giving teams the freedom to design, produce, and sell their products, companies can foster innovation, increase employee engagement, and improve customer satisfaction.” Read the paper and see the full list of authors at the Insights @ Center for Emerging Markets.

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  • ‘Location Effects of the UN Environment Program (UNEP) in Nairobi Kenya: Challenges and Opportunities’

    “In 1972, Nairobi, Kenya became the first developing country to host the headquarters of a UN organization, the UN Environment Programme (UNEP). UNEP’s presence in Nairobi has increased Kenya’s global governance stature. However, it has not fulfilled the promise of promoting greater input from developing countries. The location has posed challenges to UNEP, including security concerns, recruitment and retention of staff, communication and infrastructure difficulties, and the need for resources.” Read the paper and see the full list of authors at the Insights @ Center for Emerging Markets.

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  • ‘Optimal Cancer Evasion in a Dynamic Immune Microenvironment Generates Diverse Post-Escape Tumor Antigenicity Profiles’

    “The failure of cancer treatments, including immunotherapy, continues to be a major obstacle in preventing durable remission. This failure often results from tumor evolution, both genotypic and phenotypic, away from sensitive cell states. Here, we propose a mathematical framework for studying the dynamics of adaptive immune evasion that tracks the number of tumor-associated antigens available for immune targeting.” Read the paper and see the full list of authors at ELife Sciences.

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  • Comparative Health Humanities Symposium ‘gathers international health humanities scholars’ to Northeastern

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    The Comparative Health Humanities Symposium “gathers international health humanities scholars to examine what we can learn about the field across political, social, cultural, and linguistic contexts. Speakers will address topics including race/racism, the environment and health, translation/untranslatability, and health humanities and the health professions.” Attending scholars come from a diverse array of fields and institutions. The symposium took place on April 24th and 25th.

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  • ‘Conceptualizing Human–Nature Relationships: Implications of Human Exceptionalist Thinking’

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    “Human exceptionalism (HE) … involv[es] the belief that humans and human societies exist independently of the ecosystems in which they are embedded, promoting a sharp ontological boundary between humans and the rest of the natural world. In this paper, we introduce HE in more depth, exploring the impact of HE on perceptions of the human–nature relationship, the role of culture in HE, and speculating on the origins of HE. We consider potential implications for environmental decision-making, conservation and environmental science, and promoting proenvironmental behavior. ” Read the paper and see the full list of authors at Topics in Cognitive Science.

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  • Northeastern University’s Khoury College of Computer Science, College of Arts, Media and Design, and College of Engineering each have strong representation at ACM CHI 23 this year, the premier conference on human-computer interaction. Read more about the conference, the papers, and the various awards won by Northeastern faculty researchers at the Khoury College of Computer Science.

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  • ‘Philosophy of Perception in the Psychologist’s Laboratory’

    “Perception is our primary means of accessing the external world. What is the nature of this core mental process? Although this question is at the center of scientific research on perception, it has also long been explored by philosophers. … Although these parallel research programs typically proceed independently in contemporary scholarship, previous eras recognized more active collaboration across philosophical and scientific approaches to perception. Here, we review an emerging research focus that aims to reunite these approaches by putting long-standing philosophical questions to empirical test.” Read the paper and see the full list of authors at Current Directions in Psychological…

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  • ‘Cell Invasion During Competitive Growth of Polycrystalline Solidification Patterns’

    “Spatially extended cellular and dendritic array structures forming during solidification processes … are generally polycrystalline. Both the array structure within each grain and the larger scale grain structure determine the performance of many structural alloys. How those two structures coevolve during solidification remains poorly understood. By in situ observations of microgravity alloy solidification experiments onboard the International Space Station, we have discovered that individual cells from one grain can unexpectedly invade a nearby grain of different misorientation, either as a solitary cell or as rows of cells.” Read the paper and see the full list of authors in Nature Communications.

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  • ‘Body Mechanics, Optimality and Sensory Feedback in the Human Control of Complex Objects’

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    “Humans are adept at a wide variety of motor skills, including the handling of complex objects and using tools. Advances to understand the control of voluntary goal-directed movements have focused on simple behaviors such as reaching, uncoupled to any additional object dynamics. … This study examined a task with internal dynamics, inspired by the daily skill of transporting a cup of coffee, with additional expected or unexpected perturbations to probe the structure of the controller.” Read the paper and see the full list of authors in Neural Computation.

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  • Bucar wins John G. Cawelti Award for Best Textbook

    Elizabeth Bucar, professor of religion, has won the John G. Cawelti Award for best textbook from the Popular Culture Association for her book “Stealing My Religion: Not Just Any Cultural Appropriation.”

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  • ‘Changes in Water Flow Alter Community Dynamics in Oyster Reefs’

    Professor of marine and environmental sciences Jonathan Grabowski, with professor Sean Powers from the University of South Alabama, has published a new paper in Ecosphere. “Water flow can influence individual fitness and local population dynamics, but less is known about the collective response of natural communities to alteration in water flow. … To examine how changes in water flow affected initial larval settlement patterns of epifaunal and infaunal animals, colonization of larger individuals, and prey survival, we manipulated water flow (−50% or +47%) in situ using large wooden channels over small experimental oyster reefs.”

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  • ‘Why Do We Need to Learn about Citational Practices?’

    “How do you decide which papers to cite, how many, and from which particular sources? We reflect and discuss the implications of these critical questions based on our experiences in the panel and workshops on the topic of citational justice that took place at CSCW, CLIHC, and India HCI in 2021.” Read the paper and see the full list of authors in XRDS: Crossroads.

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