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Conference Details - Agenda

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2012 MIT Information Technology Conference

April 24-25, 2012

8:00 am

Registration and Continental Breakfast

9:00 am

Welcome and Introduction

9:15 am

CSAIL Research: New Directions
CSAIL Director and Professor of Computer Science and Engineering Agarwal will outline “New Directions” in CSAIL research, including multicore computing, advanced network architecture, robotics, and the new Networks Inititiative. Agarwal leads the Carbon Group, which focuses on advancing multicore computer architecture and software. Agarwal led the pioneering research teams that helped develop the first multicore processors. He has founded several companies, including Virtual Machine Works, based on the MIT Virtual Wires Project, and the Tilera Corporation, which created the Tile multicore processor and where he is the acting Chief Technology Officer.
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10:00 am

Social Networks and Data Processing
An important byproduct of the emergence of social networking platforms is an access to abundance of societal data in all forms: blogs, clicks, facebook feeds, transactions and tweets. It is of great interest to process this seemingly large volume of highly unstructured data to facilitate business decisions, public policy making or better social living. The key challenge lies in the fact that even though data is large in volume, the information content is very limited. Therefore, extracting meaningful answers has become a challenging computational and statistical task -- the ``Big Data'' challange. In this talk, Shah will discuss how to resolve it successfully for important ranking problems arising in the context of group decision making, revenue management and viral advertising. The key to our success lies in the identification of the appropriate statistical framework for the problems at hand.
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10:45 am


11:15 am

Sense and Sensibility for Wireless Networks
Truly mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets are fast becoming the dominant mode of Internet access. People use these devices while moving through wide range of locations, often in quick succession. The rapid variations in network conditions experienced poses a
significant challenge for wireless network protocols. This talk will motivate and describe cross-layer designs for achieving high
throughput over time-varying wireless networks. These include sensor-augmented wireless protocols and a new class of rateless codes,
called spinal codes.

12:00 pm

IT Innovation and Entrepreneurship
Innovation and entrepreneurship have become so omni-present they have almost lost their meaning. In this session, we will examine what exactly they are and how you can successfully promote it – or kill it. Real cases will be used and a framework for action presented.

12:45 pm

Lunch and IT and Networks Start up Exhibit
Recent innovations will be on exhibit from a range of start-up and spin-off companies with MIT roots. Those firms will be showcasing their wares, and even providing attendees with opportunities for hands-on demos, at this lunchtime new technology product exposition that is sure to be a Conference highlight.
Featured Companies:
AffectivaBarrett TechnologyBlue State DigitalClickMedixCogito HealthFerro SolutionsHolosonicsLuminosoModo LabsSugar LabsW3CWiredDifferently
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2:45 pm

Management Information Systems for Supply Chain Management
Where can you stand to get a good view of the supply chain? Nowhere. That's the problem. MIT and industry sponsors have launched the HI-Viz Supply Chain project. The goal is to automatically extract data from corporate data bases to draw board-ready pictures of the supply chain. These include both a left-to-right network flow diagram and a global map of the supply chain. Once these "vanilla" pictures have been created, we can then visually overlay various performance metrics such as cost build-up, capacity constraints, inventory levels, and later carbon emissions and water use. The Hi-Viz project is starting by displaying supply chain risk: the most vulnerable risk pathways in the network. We have teamed up with Sourcemap.com to leverage their global supply chain mapping software.
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3:30 pm

Multicore Software and Applications
The move to multicore processors as our standard computing platform will force major changes in the way we design parallel software, and in particular in the way we design and use concurrent data structures.

Most of the data structures being designed and used in parallel software today are concurrent versions, either lock-based or lock-free, of the sequential data structures of our youth: list-based-sets, queues, stacks, deques, binary search trees, and heaps to name a few. Today, concurrent versions of these data structures still work reasonably well because the level of parallelism offered by mainstream multicore machines is low. However, as machines grow in size, the limitations of these traditional structures will become clear: they have inherent sequential bottlenecks, they require tight synchronization among threads, they have high memory access rates, and they show poor locality when distributed across a machine.

This talk will show how we plan to reevaluate the way in which concurrent data structures are specified, implemented, and used in parallel programs in order to develop new types of concurrent objects: objects that have relaxed specifications for which one can develop decentralized randomized implementations that have low overall communication and memory access rates, and will thus be truly scalable. We will argue that such relaxed randomized data structures can effectively replace the role of parallelized traditional data structures in today's multicore applications, and that they provide an even better fit with the demands of the massively parallel many-core machines of the future.
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4:15 pm

Working Smarter in a Digital Economy
Over the last decade firms have been designing, building, and implementing digitized platforms. The effort has proved to be transformational—and enormously challenging. Now comes the really hard part. How do firms ensure that their platforms make them more efficient, more agile, and more innovative? Research at MIT’s Center for Information Systems Research has found that top firms are working hard to get the right information into the hands of the right people so that decision making processes—which had been increasingly centralized—can be pushed out to individuals at the customer interface or in key operational roles. To do so, they’ve had to master business rules management, clarify accountabilities, and persistently improve their data. In this session, we describe how firms like PepsiCo, Protection 1, and 7-Eleven Japan are working smarter.
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5:00 pm

Networking Reception