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Category: School of Architecture and Planning

Merging design, tech, and cognitive science | MIT News
January 20, 2022

Ibuki Iwasaki came to MIT without a clear idea of what she wanted to major in, but that changed during the spring of her first year, when she left her comfort zone and enrolled in 4.02A (Introduction to Design). For the final project, her group had to make a modular structure out of foam blocks, producing a design with both two-dimensional and three-dimensional components. The team ended up shaping 72 unique cubes, with...

“Hey, Alexa! Are you trustworthy?”
January 14, 2022

A family gathers around their kitchen island to unbox the digital assistant they just purchased. They will be more likely to trust this new voice-user interface, which might be a smart speaker like Amazon’s Alexa or a social robot like Jibo, if it exhibits some humanlike social behaviors, according to a new study by researchers in MIT’s Media Lab. The researchers found that family members tend to think a device is more competent and...

The promise and pitfalls of artificial intelligence explored at TEDxMIT event | MIT News
January 12, 2022

Scientists, students, and community members came together last month to discuss the promise and pitfalls of artificial intelligence at MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) for the fourth TEDxMIT event held at MIT.  Attendees were entertained and challenged as they explored “the good and bad of computing,” explained CSAIL Director Professor Daniela Rus, who organized the event with...

Courtney Lesoon and Elizabeth Yarina win Fulbright-Hays Scholarships | MIT News
January 10, 2022

Two MIT doctoral students in the MIT School of Architecture and Planning have received the prestigious Fulbright-Hays Scholarship for Doctoral Dissertation Research Award. Courtney Lesoon and Elizabeth "Lizzie" Yarina are the first awardees from MIT in more than a decade. The fellowship provides opportunities for doctoral students to engage in full-time dissertation research abroad. The program, funded by the U.S....

Speeding up directed evolution of molecules in the lab | MIT News
December 30, 2021

Natural evolution is a slow process that relies on the gradual accumulation of genetic mutations. In recent years, scientists have found ways to speed up the process on a small scale, allowing them to rapidly create new proteins and other molecules in their lab. This widely-used technique, known as directed evolution, has yielded new antibodies to treat cancer and other diseases, enzymes used in biofuel production, and...

MIT in the media: 2021 in review | MIT News
December 22, 2021

From Institute-wide efforts to address the climate crisis to responding to Covid-19, members of the MIT community made headlines this year for their innovative work in a variety of areas. Faculty, students, and staff were on the front lines of addressing many pressing issues this year, raising their voices and sharing their findings. Below are highlights of news stories that spotlight the many efforts underway at MIT to...

MIT community in 2021: A year in review | MIT News
December 22, 2021

During 2021, the Covid-19 pandemic continued to color much of the year, as MIT saw both the promise of vaccines as well as the rise of troubling new variants. The Institute also made new commitments to climate action, saw the opening of new and renovated spaces, continued in its efforts to support its diverse voices, and celebrated new Nobel laureates and astronaut candidates. Here are some of the top stories in the MIT...

MIT’s top research stories of 2021 | MIT News
December 22, 2021

Despite the pandemic’s disruptions, MIT’s research community still found a way to generate a number of impressive research breakthroughs in 2021. In the spirit of reflection that comes with every new orbit around the sun, below we count down 10 of the most-viewed research stories on MIT News from the past year. We’ve also rounded up the year’s top MIT community-related stories. 10. Giving cancer treatment a...

Characters for good, created by artificial intelligence | MIT News
December 16, 2021

As it becomes easier to create hyper-realistic digital characters using artificial intelligence, much of the conversation around these tools has centered on misleading and potentially dangerous deepfake content. But the technology can also be used for positive purposes — to revive Albert Einstein to teach a physics class, talk through a career change with your older self, or anonymize people while preserving facial...

New visions for better transportation | MIT News
December 16, 2021

We typically experience transportation problems from the ground up. Waiting for a delayed bus, packing ourselves into a subway car, or crawling along in traffic, it is common to see such systems struggling at close range. Yet sometimes transportation solutions come from a high-level, top-down approach. That was the theme of the final talk in MIT’s Mobility Forum series, delivered on Friday by MIT Professor Thomas...

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