Jia Deng and Zachary Kincaid recipients of SEAS's Junior Faculty awards
E. Lawrence Keyes, Jr./Emerson Electric Co. Faculty Advancement Award
An assistant professor of computer science, Deng works in the field of computer vision, with the goal of achieving human-level visual understanding by integrating perception, cognition and learning. He received his Ph.D. from Princeton in 2012, and is well-known for his graduate research on ImageNet, the labeled dataset of more than 14 million images that, in the words of computer science department chair Jennifer Rexford, “spawned the deep-learning revolution.” Now, going beyond recognizing objects in two-dimensional images, Deng investigates how to understand actions and how to recover three-dimensional representations in the wild. He has created new benchmarks for classifying and detecting human-object interactions from images, and developed methods to analyze poses of the human body. The award will enable Deng’s research group to build on this work by ensuring access to the computing resources necessary to design machine learning algorithms using massive amounts of data.
Howard B. Wentz Award
An assistant professor of computer science, Kincaid aims to help software developers create reliable and secure software by providing them with tools to verify correctness properties of their code and identify bugs and security vulnerabilities. Since decision problems concerning program behavior are unsolvable in the general case, state-of-the-art program analyzers rely upon techniques that work well in practice, but can be unpredictable and difficult to use. Kincaid is interested in designing program analysis tools whose behavior can be understood and altered by software developers. Department chair Rexford noted that Kincaid routinely publishes several papers a year at “highly competitive conferences where averaging even one paper per year would be a strong publication record for a faculty member.” He will use the award funds to support graduate students participating in research on verification of distributed systems, robust and compositional program analysis, and analysis of resource bounds.