Tom Kailath awarded the National Medal of Science

President Obama announced today that Tom Kailath is a recipient of the National Medal of Science:

http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2014/10/03/president-obama-honors-nation-s-top-scientists-and-innovators

Tom becomes the 4th Shannon award winner to receive the NMS:

(Claude Shannon-1966 from LBJ)
(Andy Viterbi-2007 from GWB)
(Sol Golomb-2011 from BHO)

Institute of Mathematical Statistics

IMS provides a premier human network of global nature. IMS runs premier journals such as the Annals of Statistics, the Annals of Probability, the Annals of Applied Statistics and the Annals of Applied Probability. IMS also gives prestigious awards and runs or jointly runs major statistical conferences such as Joint Statistical Meetings (JSM) and World Congress of Probability and Statistics.

IMS membership is free for students, and reduced rates for new graduates and for people with permanent residence in a number of countries designated by the IMS Council (http://imstat.org/membership/designated_countries.htm).

IMS-membershipdrive-yu14

HBO Series: Silicon Valley

THE REALITY OF SILICON VALLEY [POPULAR SCIENCE, May 2014]
When Mike Judge, creator of Office Space and Beavis and Butt-head, set out to write his HBO comedy series, Silicon Valley, about Bay Area coders, he wanted to conceive a simple, believable widget for his characters to invent. So he teamed with Stanford electrical engineering professor Tsachy Weissman
and Ph.D. student Vinith Misra; they came up with a superfast compression algorithm.
Data compression makes files—text, music, movies— smaller and more transmissible. The best algorithms are fast but don’t harm fidelity. For the show, Weissman and Misra devised a fictional algorithm that excels at just that. The writers coined a metric, the “Weissman Score,” for characters to use when comparing compression codes.
Researchers are always refining compression. Last year, for instance, UCLA unveiled a way to save images more efficiently than JPEGs do. So something like what’s in Silicon Valley, which is more than two times faster than current models, is possible. “New, effective ways of compression are out there,” says Weissman. ADAM HADHAZ