Thursday, March 13, 2014

MemberNet India

Vote for Your ACM India Council Members!
from ACM India Council President P.J. Narayanan

Dear ACM Member,

Welcome to the first issue of 2014! Read updates from the ACM-W India Women's Committee and Education Committee, and meet the 2013 ACM Fellows and Distinguished Members from India. In addition, we congratulate the 2013 ACM India Doctoral Dissertation Award Winner as well as two outstanding Student Chapters. We also cover recent and upcoming events, and feature a speaker from ACM's Distinguished Speakers Program.

Special notice: ACM Professional Members in India can participate in two elections in the coming months.
  1. There will be elections for Office Bearers and Council Members of ACM in May. Statements and biographical sketches of all candidates will appear in the May 2014 issue of Communications of the ACM. Visit the ACM Elections page for more information and to view the slate.
  2. There will be elections for Council Members of ACM India in June. The slate can be found on the Elections tab of the ACM India site. More information on the candidates will be posted in the coming months.
I urge all ACM Professional Members in India to vote in both elections.

With best regards,

P.J. Narayanan
President, ACM India Council
P.J. Narayanan is Professor and Director of IIIT, Hyderabad.

ACM India Council
ACM-W India Update
ACM India Education Update
2013 ACM India Doctoral Dissertation Award Winner
Member Recognition
Meet the 2013 Indian ACM Fellows and Distinguished Members
Call for ACM Senior Member Nominations
Distinguished Speakers Program
Featured ACM Indian Distinguished Speaker: Ullas Nambiar
Conferences and Events
 Recent Events:
ACM India Annual Event, February 14 - 16, New Delhi
 Upcoming Events:
DEBS 2014, May 26 - 29, Mumbai
ICSE 2014, June 1 - 7, Hyderabad
Student News
ACM-W Student Scholarships for Attendance at Research Conferences
Chapters News
ACM India Recognizes Two Student Chapters for Excellence
Publications News
Featured ICPS Conference Proceedings: ISEC 2013 India Software Engineering Conference, February 21 - 23, New Delhi

ACM India Council

ACM-W India Update by Sheila Anand, ACM-W India Chair
The ACM-W India event was held on February 14 as part of the 2014 ACM India Annual Event and provided an opportunity for young students and professionals to listen to, interact with, and be motivated by leading women professionals around the world. The programme consisted of talks by Radia Perlman, software designer and network engineer at Intel; Ponnurangam Kumaraguru, Assistant Professor at Indraprastha Institute of Information Technology (IIIT), Delhi; Ritu Anand, Vice President and Deputy Head-Global HR of Tata Consultancy Services; and Laura Haas, IBM Fellow and Director for Technology and Operations of IBM Research's Accelerated Discovery Lab. Panel sessions included a student roundtable and mentorship session discussing computer science careers.

ACM-W India has begun organizing a series of talks by women experts at Chennai. This programme is being jointly organized with Madras Management Association (MMA), an affiliate association of the All India Management Association (AIMA). The intended audience comprises company executives, professionals, administrators, consultants and students.

The joint programme was launched on December 20, 2013 at Hotel Deccan Plaza, Chennai. The first talk on "Managing IT Services" was delivered by Vijayalakshmi Shankar and Venkata Vaijayanthi of Steria India, Chennai. The talk gave an overview of IT Service Management and covered the various models of service management contracts, customer viewpoints and broad expectations.

The second talk was delivered by Rashmi Mohan, Senior Engineering Manager, Yahoo, Bangalore on January 24. The talk was on "Understanding User Engagement—Smart Phones to Wide Screens." The focus of the talk was on maintaining the attention span of users and how to measure the parts of the website that users were most interested in.

The next talk is likely to be scheduled in April. The next ACM-W India celebration event is being organized in September 2014 at Goa.

ACM India Education Initiatives by Mathai Joseph, Chair, ACM India Education Committee
The ACM India Education Committee held a workshop on Teaching Computer Science in Schools in Pune in July 2013. The workshop brought together educators, 50 heads and senior teachers from 28 selected schools and 27 ACM computer scientists to discuss how computing can be taught in schools. Possible changes in computing syllabi were also discussed with the aim of bringing them to the notice of policymakers in Maharashtra and at the national level.

Neelima Gupta (Delhi University, curriculum panel for CS, CBSE) and Sridhar Iyer (IIT Bombay, originator of the Computer Masti books and curriculum) were invited as speakers. Mathai Joseph (TCS), Chandrashekhar Sahasrabuddhe (Persistent Systems), Shraddha Joshi (Persistent Systems), Nikhil Karkare, (Director, Millennium School) and Vipul Shah (TCS) were the other speakers and session moderators. From the discussions—which included the challenges posed by heterogeneity, infrastructure, qualified faculty and scale; the need to focus on developing computer fluency, not just literacy, and developing thinking skills, not just content mastery; whether to start in rural areas first or in urban areas; and what software should be used— these action items emerged:
  1. Create more groups to study curricula from Computer Science Teachers Association (CSTA), Computer Masti Curriculum (CMC), and other curricula to stress curriculum building and developing pedagogical guidelines for CS school teachers
  2. Hold ACM workshops for teachers on topics such as the life of Alan Turing, algorithms, Scratch, etc.
In September the Trivandrum Chapter of ACM India (in association with the Indian Association for Research in Computing Science and Indian Institute of Information Technology and Management-Kerala) hosted a five-day workshop on Design and Analysis of Algorithms. The aim of the workshop series is to help engineering college teachers teach this core subject more effectively. The topics covered included algorithm analysis and design, basic data structures, graphs and traversals, finding shortest paths, and NP-completeness and dynamic programming. Participants included teachers from engineering colleges and scientists from R&D organizations. A separate workshop for students demonstrated how to design and analyze algorithms and how to do research.


2013 ACM India Doctoral Dissertation Award Winner
ACM India is pleased to announce the 2013 ACM India Doctoral Dissertation Award winner. Created in 2011, the 2013 award is for PhD theses that were completed in the academic years 2012–2013. Tata Consultancy Services is a founding sponsor of the award. The award was given on February 16 during the 2014 ACM India Annual Event in Delhi. ACM congratulates the winner! Well done indeed! We also thank the institutions for nominating their top dissertations and the eminent members of the jury who helped us select the awards. Please check the ACM India Doctoral Dissertation nominations page via the top menu tab of the ACM India home page soon for future nomination deadlines for 2014.
  • Awardee: Ramprasad Saptharishi from Chennai Mathematical Institute
    Thesis Title: "Unified Approaches to Polynomial Identity Testing and Lower Bounds"

Member Recognition

Meet the 2013 Indian ACM Fellows and Distinguished Members
The ACM Fellows Program recognizes and honors outstanding ACM members for their achievements in computer science and information technology and for their significant contributions to the mission of the ACM. The ACM Fellows serve as distinguished colleagues to whom the ACM and its members look for guidance and leadership as the world of information technology evolves. ACM India congratulates these Indian members who were named 2013 ACM Fellows:

Charu Aggarwal
IBM T. J. Watson Research Center

Krishnendu (Krish) Chakrabarty
Duke University

Ramalingam Chellappa
University of Maryland

Sampath K. Kannan
University of Pennsylvania

Panganamala Kumar
Texas A&M University

Madhav Marathe
Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University

The Distinguished Member Grade recognizes those ACM members with professional experience and continuous professional membership who have achieved significant accomplishments or have made a significant impact on the computing field. ACM India congratulates these 2013 Distinguished Members:

Saurabh Bagchi
Purdue University

Prasad M Deshpande
IBM Research

Sriganesh Madhvanath

Jitendra Padhye
Microsoft Research

Sushil K Prasad
Georgia State University

Eswaran Subrahmanian
Carnegie Mellon University

Call for ACM Senior Member Nominations
The Senior Member Grade recognizes those ACM members with professional experience and continuous Professional Membership who have demonstrated performance that sets them apart from their peers. Please consider nominating an ACM member in your community who you feel merits this recognition. Nominations are accepted throughout the year; the deadline for the current cycle is June 3. Please see the nomination guide for more information. Also please read Advice to Those Seeking ACM Senior Members by former Senior Member Committee Chair Susan Rodger on how to submit a strong nomination package.

Distinguished Speakers Program

Featured ACM European Distinguished Speaker: Ullas Nambiar
The Distinguished Speakers Program (DSP) is one of ACM's most valued outreach programs, providing universities, corporations, event and conference planners, and local ACM chapters with direct access to top technology leaders and innovators from nearly every sector of the computing industry.

This month's featured speaker is Ullas Nambiar. Ullas is currently the Lead Research Scientist at the CTO Office of EMC India Center of Excellence (COE), Bangalore. He has over 15 years of experience in data management and analytics research. His current focus is primarily on tackling Big Data Analytics and Cloud Computing challenges at EMC. He is heavily involved in building research relationships with academic institutions in India and abroad. Other activities include patenting ideas, organizing workshops, mentoring students, delivering lectures and publishing at top conferences and journals. Prior to EMC, Ullas worked as a Research Scientist at IBM Research - India, as a post-doctoral research scholar at University of California, Davis, and as a Software Analyst at L&T InfoTech. Ullas has co-authored more than 40 papers in top conferences in data management, has several granted patents at USPTO and chaired eight workshops on Web/Big Data Management including four editions of the highly successful IIWeb workshop series.

Ullas received a PhD in Computer Science from Arizona State University and a BS in Computer Science with Distinction from Maharaja Sayajirao University in Vadodara. He is a Senior Member of ACM.

For more information on Ullas, please visit his DSP speaker information page.
Ullas Nambiar's Digital Library author page.

Conferences and Events

ACM India Annual Event, February 14 - 16, 2014, New Delhi
The 2014 ACM India Annual Event was the fifth in ACM India's series of annual flagship events to discuss trends in science and technology, and to celebrate ACM's spirit and India's accomplishments in computing. Highlights included talks by Turing Award recipients, ACM office bearers, and others; an ACM-W event for women; and a Research Scholar Event which showcased a cross-section of topics in which research is being actively pursued within India. Speakers included both current (Vint Cerf) and former (David Patterson) ACM Presidents; ACM CEO John White; Ramesh Gopinath, Director of IBM Research, India; 2012 ACM Turing Award Recipient Shafi Goldwasser; and Manish Gupta, Vice President at Xerox Corporation and Director of Xerox Research Center India. Much of the proceedings was live-streamed on YouTube.

DEBS 2014, May 26 - 29, Mumbai
DEBS 2014 is the premier international conference on distributed event based systems. The conference is organized along five tracks: a research track that presents original research contributions; an industry and experience reports track on innovative deployments of event based systems; a poster and demo track where authors can report on work in progress and/or demonstrate interesting ideas and applications; a doctoral symposium track; and a grand challenge track, where the committee will set out a grand challenge problem and then judge the most innovative approaches to solving it. The conference will also feature tutorials in distributed systems and event-driven computing delivered by experts in the area, as well as keynotes by leaders of the field. There are still some deadlines for submissions remaining; please see the submissions flier for more information.

ICSE 2014, June 1 - 7, Hyderabad
ICSE 2014, the International Conference on Software Engineering, provides a forum for researchers, practitioners and educators to present and discuss the most recent innovations, trends, experiences and concerns in the field of software engineering. Scheduled keynote speakers will include James D. Herbsleb, a professor at the Institute for Software Research in the School of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University; Charles Lee Isbell, Jr., Senior Associate Dean, College of Computing and professor, School of Interactive Computing at Georgia Institute of Technology; and Armando Fox, a professor at University of California, Berkeley's Electrical Engineering & Computer Science Department as well as Faculty Advisor to the UC Berkeley MOOCLab. A CTO Roundtable will pair Jeannette M. Wing, Corporate Vice President, Microsoft Research and ACM Fellow, and K. Ananth Krishnan, CTO, Tata Consultancy Services. Co-located events will cover a variety of topics in software engineering, including Mobile Software Engineering, Software Repositories, and workshops will cover many technical aspects of SE, including Crowdsourcing, Testing, and Data Analysis.

Student News

ACM-W Student Scholarships for Attendance at Research Conferences
The ACM Women's Council (ACM-W) provides support for women undergraduate or graduate students in computer science and related programs who wish to attend research conferences. This exposure to the Computer Science research world can encourage a student to continue on to the next level (Undergraduate to Graduate, Masters to Ph.D., Ph.D. to an industry or academic position). The student does not have to present a paper at the conference she attends. Students can apply an unlimited number of times; however, once a student receives an award, she is no longer eligible for future ACM-W scholarships.

The ACM-W scholarships are divided between scholarships of up to $600 for intra-continental conference travel, and scholarships of up to $1200 for intercontinental conference travel. Scholarship applications are evaluated in six groups each year, in order to distribute awards across a range of conferences.

ACM-W encourages the student's home department to match the scholarship award and recognize the student's achievement locally within their department. In addition, if the award is for attendance at one of several ACM Special Interest Group conferences (SIGACCESS, SIGACT, SIGARCH, SIGCOMM, SIGCHI, SIGCSE, SIGDA, SIGECOM, SIGEVO, SIGGRAPH, SIGHPC, SIGIR, SIGITE, SIGMM, SIGMOBILE, SIGOPS, SIGPLAN, and SIGSOFT), the SIG will provide complimentary conference registration and a mentor during the conference. The number of free registrations available varies from SIG to SIG. The 2013-2014 scholarships are made possible by generous support from Google.

For application form, notification dates and more information, please visit the scholarships page.

Chapters News

ACM India Recognizes Two Student Chapters for Excellence
Congratluations to these two chapters which are winners of the ACM India Student Chapter Awards:
Best Chapter: ACM BITS Pilani Student Chapter
Runner-up: ACM IIIT Bhubaneswar Student Chapter

Nominations were invited from ACM Student Chapters in India. The awards were presented at the ACM India Annual Event in February. The participating chapters sent a report with details of their activities in six key areas: Community Activities; Community Service; Website; Recruitment Program; Participation in ACM India Activities; and Membership Numbers.

ACM Student Chapters in India
ACM Professional Chapters in India

Publications News

Featured ICPS Conference Proceedings: ISEC 2013 India Software Engineering Conference, February 21 - 23, New Delhi
ICPS is ACM's International Conference Proceedings Series, which enables conferences and workshops to publish their proceedings in ACM's Digital Library, providing maximum dissemination of the material through electronic channels. In this issue we are featuring the Proceedings of the ISEC 2013 India Software Engineering Conference. This annual conference series was started by the Special Interest Group on Software Engineering (SIGSE) of the Computer Society of India (CSI), and is the flagship conference in Software Engineering out of India. ISEC 2013 is now the annual event of the India Software Engineering community (ISOFT) and Indian chapter of ACM SIGSOFT, and is co-sponsored by the SIGSE of CSI.
See the full list of conferences in the ACM ICPS Series.