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Congratulations to Praveen Koduru, a Ph.D. candidate in Electrical Engineering and Computer Engineering who successfully defended his dissertation today.

Praveen's co-advisors are Sanjoy Das (EECE) and Steve Welch (Agronomy).
Other members of his committee are Anil Pahwa (EECE), Don Gruenbacher (EECE), and me, William Hsu (CIS).

We are fortunate to be retaining Praveen as a postdoctoral researcher, and I look forward to fruitful discussions and collaborations with him.

Enjoy, Praveen! A day such as today is as good as it gets. :-D

--
Banazir

Comments

( 14 comments — Leave a comment )
poovanna
May. 7th, 2006 04:51 am (UTC)
That's wonderful! Please pass on my congratulations to him.
banazir
May. 7th, 2006 05:20 am (UTC)
Will do!
You know him? I know he's got a lot of friends, but I didn't realize you guys knew each other. Cool!

--
Banazir
poovanna
May. 7th, 2006 05:40 am (UTC)
Re: Will do!
I got to know him while attending CIS 830. Brilliant chap.
banazir
May. 7th, 2006 06:15 pm (UTC)
CIS 830: Advanced AI
Ah, yes, of course. It's been a year since I last taught it, because I taught CIS 560 (Database Systems) and CIS 636/736 (Computer Graphics/Advanced CG) this spring, so the memory of that course has dulled a little.

Who else took that with you guys? I remember Jan Antolik, you, Praveen, and the fourth person is slipping my mind. Was it Jan Miksatko?

--
Banazir
poovanna
May. 7th, 2006 07:13 pm (UTC)
Re: CIS 830: Advanced AI
No. I think it was just Praveen, Peter (the bearded dude) and me.
banazir
May. 8th, 2006 03:34 am (UTC)
Oh, right, Peter
He was a student of Gustafson's - I think he graduated that same semester. Antolik was definitely in CIS 730, and he did an MS thesis in spring, 2004. Maybe I'm thinking of CIS 732 in fall, 2003.

Wow, that was 2 1/2 years ago. Time really flies!

--
Banazir
poovanna
May. 8th, 2006 03:39 am (UTC)
Re: Oh, right, Peter
Wow, that was 2 1/2 years ago. Time really flies!
No prof. This was in Spring 2005
banazir
May. 8th, 2006 06:57 am (UTC)
Spring 2005
Oh, that's right - sorry. I got your class mixed up with the previous offering of CIS 830 in spring, 2004, which did include Jan.

Jan was with Charlie Thornton and scottharmon in CIS 732 in fall, 2003.

I've taught the course enough times to small enough classes that they're starting to blur together! You'd think larger classes would be harder to keep track of, but small cohorts tend to have some interaction.

There was a fourth guy who was auditing, was there not? I can't for the life of me remember his name right now. Do you remember him?

--
Banazir
poovanna
May. 8th, 2006 06:59 am (UTC)
Re: Spring 2005
If you're referring to the bespectacled Indian dude, I think his name was Ashish. He was from the Electrical/Electronics Dept.
banazir
May. 8th, 2006 07:05 am (UTC)
Ashish
That's him. Thanks!

Hey, and here I thought only short-term memory was affected by lowered cortisone production due to extended sleep deprivation... ;-)

(No, seriously, lower cortisone is supposed to be good for the hippocampus. I've always figured that's why my LTM is much better than my STM.)

--
Banazir
poovanna
May. 8th, 2006 07:10 am (UTC)
Re: Ashish
Cortisone's a stress hormone right? Sleep deprivation leads to reduced stress? Really?
banazir
May. 8th, 2006 08:00 am (UTC)
Cortisol
Sorry, I meant cortisol, but cortisone is a precursor thereof. Cortisol indeed is a stress hormone, and so it is higher in sleep-deprived people:
Wikipedia: The amount of cortisol present in the serum undergoes diurnal variation, with the highest levels present in the early morning, and lower levels in the evening, several hours after the onset of sleep.

Medscape: The first effect of partial sleep loss on circulating levels of pituitary-dependent hormones to be documented under various study conditions is an increase in the early evening levels of the stress hormone cortisol.[3,6] Normally at that time of day, cortisol concentrations are rapidly decreasing to attain minimal levels shortly before habitual bedtime. The rate of decrease of cortisol concentrations in the early evening was approximately 6-fold slower in subjects who had undergone 6 days of sleep restriction than in subjects who were fully rested.[3] Elevations of evening cortisol levels in chronic sleep loss are likely to promote the development of insulin resistance, a risk factor for obesity and diabetes.

Cortisol seems to upregulate DHT (a testosterone product), a hair loss factor; according to Wikipedia: "... it also lowers the activity of the immune system in the blood... Prolonged cortisol secretion causes muscle wastage, hyperglycemia, and suppresses immune / inflammatory response... Also, long-term exposure to cortisol results in damage to cells in the hippocampus. This damage results in impaired learning. However, short-term exposure of cortisol helps to create memories; this is the proposed mechanism for storage of flash bulb memories."

So, excess cortisol due to sleep deprivation can trigger hair loss (which is widely held in folk medicine already), and isn't too good for staying in shape and LTM. It's rather neutral wrt STM. When I think about it, the "STM loss" I've experiences is probably not technically short-term (one day to one month); it's probably still LTM. I couldn't tell you how it affects my concentration and ability to retain things over less than a day.

--
Banazir
poovanna
May. 8th, 2006 08:04 am (UTC)
Re: Cortisol
Thanks. That was interesting.
banazir
May. 8th, 2006 03:28 pm (UTC)
Re: Cortisol
It was, and ironically enough, I got 55 minutes of sleep last night after reading it. :-D

(I had to put some polishing touches on my CIS 560 Database Systems final to make it more "interesting".)

--
Banazir
( 14 comments — Leave a comment )

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