37,086 Works

Learning DAGs with Continuous Optimization

Xun Zheng
Learning the structure of directed acyclic graphs (DAGs, also known as Bayesian networks) from data is an important and classical problem in machine learning, with prominent applications in causal inference, fairness, interpretability,and biology, etc. This is a challenging problem since the search space of DAGs is combinatorial and scales superexponentially with the number of nodes. Existingapproaches often rely on various local heuristics for enforcing the acyclicity constraint. By contrast, structure learning for undirected graphical models...

Retail Market Mechanism in Support of Differentiated Reliable Electricity Services

In this thesis, a retail market mechanism that provides differentiated reliability services is proposed. The differentiated reliability services beyond the standard level utilize advanced metering infrastructure, automated distribution reconfiguration and distributed generation (DG). The service quality at the standard level is regulated, while high reliability services are offered through a market mechanism. This proposed market mechanism is designed in two different models of managing the distribution networks. The first model assumes that an independent distribution...

Retail Market Mechanism in Support of Differentiated Reliable Electricity Services

In this thesis, a retail market mechanism that provides differentiated reliability services is proposed. The differentiated reliability services beyond the standard level utilize advanced metering infrastructure, automated distribution reconfiguration and distributed generation (DG). The service quality at the standard level is regulated, while high reliability services are offered through a market mechanism. This proposed market mechanism is designed in two different models of managing the distribution networks. The first model assumes that an independent distribution...

Revealing the Structural and Molecular Basis of Retroviral Assembly and Endolysin PlyC Membrane Translocation Using Surface Plasmon Resonance and Neutron Reflectometry

In this thesis we focus on the mechanistic understanding of two membrane mediated biological processes: retroviral assembly and endolysin PlyC plasma membrane translocation. Retroviral Gag polyprotein is the structural determinant that assembles in a protein lattice on the hosts plasma membrane to trigger formation of the viral protein/membrane shell.

Robust Bode Methods for Feedback Controller Design of Uncertain Systems

Jonathan Taylor
In this work, we introduce several novel approaches to feedback controller design, known collectively as the “Robust Bode” methods, which adapt classical control principles to a modern robust control (H∞) framework. These methods, based on specially modified Bode diagrams extend familiar frequency-domain controller design techniques to linear and nonlinear, single–input/single– output (SISO) and multi–input/multi–output (MIMO) systems with parametric and/or unstructured uncertainties. In particular, we introduce the Contoured Robust Controller Bode (CRCBode) plots which show contours...

Safe, Efficient, and Robust Predictive Control of Constrained Nonlinear Systems

As autonomous systems are deployed in increasingly complex and uncertain environments, safe, accurate, and robust feedback control techniques are required to ensure reliable operation. Accurate trajectory tracking is essential to complete a variety of tasks, but this may be difficult if the system’s dynamics change online, e.g., due to environmental effects or hardware degradation. As a result, uncertainty mitigation techniques are also necessary to ensure safety and accuracy. This problem is well suited to a...

SAR ADCs Design and Calibration in Nano-scaled Technologies

The rapid progress of scaling and integration of modern complimentary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) technology motivates the replacement of traditional analog signal processing by digital alternatives. Thus, analog-to-digital converters (ADCs), as the interfaces between the analog world and the digital one, are driven to enhance their performance in terms of speed, resolution and power efficiency. However, in the presence of imperfections of device mismatch, thermal noise and reduced voltage headroom, efficient ADC design demands new...

Scaling Moore’s Wall: Existing Institutions and the End of a Technology Paradigm

Hassan Khan
This dissertation is an historical and evaluative study of the semiconductor industry as it approaches the end of the silicon integrated-circuit paradigm. For nearly 60 years, semiconductor technology has been defined by rapid rates of progress and concomitant decreases in costs-perfunction made possible by the extendibility of the silicon integrated-circuit. The stability of this technological paradigm has not only driven the transformation of the global economy but also deeply shaped scholars’ understanding of technological change....

Scaling Software Security Analysis to Millions of Malicious Programs and Billions of Lines of Code

Software security is a big data problem. The volume of new software artifacts created far outpaces the current capacity of software analysis. This gap has brought an urgent challenge to our security community—scalability. If our techniques cannot cope with an ever increasing volume of software, we will always be one step behind attackers. Thus developing scalable analysis to bridge the gap is essential. In this dissertation, we argue that automatic code reuse detection enables an...

Scenario - Based Prediction of U.S. Water Withdrawal and Consumptive Water Use

Hui Wang
U.S. water withdrawals have increased slowly since 1980, despite significant growth in the population and economy during this period. This implies that other factors have contributed to offsetting decreases in water withdrawals. The economic input-output life cycle assessment (EIO-LCA) model was used to estimate the total water withdrawal for 135 industrial summary sectors for 1997 and 2002. The change in water withdrawals for the economy from 1997 to 2002 was allocated to changes in five...

Scene Recovery and Rendering Techniques Under Global Light Transport

Robotics Institute

Secondary Stresses in Framed Structures

The purpose of this paper is two-fold: First, to present an adequate treatment of secondary stresses, and second, to introduce-three new methods evolved by the writer. During recent years when the importance of secondary stresses has exhibited itself a large amount of literature has been written on the subject for advancing the science of structural design* & critical study made of these papers will at once reveal that they are subject to one or more...

Secondary Structure Models of Nucleic Acid Folding Kinetics

Benjamin Adair Sauerwine
This thesis examines nucleic acid folding processes using secondary structure models, which have the advantage that they may simulate behavior at long timescales. First, it verifies that Kinetic Monte Carlo can reproduce known behavior of biological riboswitches. Motivated by the results of that study, a new and general method for determining the effective barrier between local free energy minima is introduced. Finally, a general rate model is developed that greatly improves simulated agreement with measured...

Secondary Structure Models of Nucleic Acid Folding Kinetics

Benjamin Adair Sauerwine
This thesis examines nucleic acid folding processes using secondary structure models, which have the advantage that they may simulate behavior at long timescales. First, it verifies that Kinetic Monte Carlo can reproduce known behavior of biological riboswitches. Motivated by the results of that study, a new and general method for determining the effective barrier between local free energy minima is introduced. Finally, a general rate model is developed that greatly improves simulated agreement with measured...

Secure Detection in Cyberphysical Control Systems

Rohan Chabukswar
A SCADA system employing the distributed networks of sensors and actuators that interact with the physical environment is vulnerable to attacks that target the interface between the cyber and physical subsystems. An attack that hijacks the sensors in an attempt to provide false readings to the controller (for example, the Stuxnet worm that targeted Iran’s nuclear centrifuges) can be used to feign normal system operation for the control system, while the attacker can hijack the...

Self-Controlled Regulation of Mu Opioid Receptor Trafficking

Amanda L. Soohoo
Our cells rely extensively on external signals for key cellular and systematic functions. Many of these signals take the form of small molecules that are recognized by receptors on the cell surface. G-protein coupled receptors (GPCRs) are the largest group of surface signaling receptors. GPCRs respond to a diverse array of signals including: light, pain, adrenaline and serotonin. The capability of a certain type of GPCR to receive its signals is dependent on the number...

Self-Healing Circuits Using Statistical Element Selection

Process variations in advanced CMOS process nodes limit the benefits of scaling for analog designs. In the presence of increasing random intra-die variations, mismatch becomes a significant design challenge in circuits such as comparators. In this dissertation, the statistical element selection (SES) methodology that was first proposed in [1] is analyzed in detail and extended to accommodate a broader spectrum of circuits and systems. SES relies on choosing a subset of selectable circuit elements (e.g.,...

Self-Regulation and Writing Transfer: How Students Navigate Unfamiliar Writing Situations

Ryan Roderick
It is well documented that, as students encounter new genres throughout their academic and professional careers, most struggle to develop their writing knowledge and processes. The process of developing writing knowledge and practices in new situations has become studied as adaptive transfer. Mainstream pedagogical approaches are designed to teach adaptive transfer by showing students how to analyze genres so that they may infer conventions and apply that knowledge to their processes. However, knowledge about genre...

Semi-Supervised and Latent-Variable Models of Natural Language Semantics

This thesis focuses on robust analysis of natural language semantics. A primary bottleneck for semantic processing of text lies in the scarcity of high-quality and large amounts of annotated data that provide complete information about the semantic structure of natural language expressions. In this dissertation, we study statistical models tailored to solve problems in computational semantics, with a focus on modeling structure that is not visible in annotated text data. We first investigate supervised methods...

Semi-Volatile Organic Compounds: Behavior and Secondary Organic Aerosol Formation

This thesis mainly described the development of studying the behavior and secondary organic aerosol formation from semi-volatile organic compounds (SVOCs). SVOCs comprises a significant fraction of the organic mass in particulate matter (PM), which has shown important impacts on human health and also influences on Earth’s climate. SVOCs are thought to play essential roles in the formation of SOA, chemical aging and mixing processes. Smog chambers have been extensively used to study SOA formation, chemical...

Sensing Through Structure

Ronit Slyper
We present an approach to designing input devices that focuses on the structure of materials. We explore and visualize how a material reacts under manipulation, and harness the material’s properties to design new movement sensors. Two benefits spring out of this approach. One, simpler sensing emerges from making use of existing structure in the material. Two, by working with the natural structure of the material, we create input devices with readily recognizable affordances. We present...

Sensing Through Structure

Ronit Slyper
We present an approach to designing input devices that focuses on the structure of materials. We explore and visualize how a material reacts under manipulation, and harness the material’s properties to design new movement sensors. Two benefits spring out of this approach. One, simpler sensing emerges from making use of existing structure in the material. Two, by working with the natural structure of the material, we create input devices with readily recognizable affordances. We present...

Sentimental Value and Its Influence on Hedonic Adaptation

Yang Yang
Sentimental value is a highly important and prevalent phenomenon in consumers’ daily life. However, sentimental value as a construct is under-researched. It has not been clearly defined in marketing and psychology. As a result, it is largely unknown what characteristics sentimental value has, and what its antecedents and consequences are. My dissertation aims to make theoretical contributions by 1) introducing the construct of sentimental value, defining sentimental value, and empirically verifying my definition; 2) examining...

Shape-Constrained Estimation in High Dimensions

Min Xu
Shape-constrained estimation techniques such as convex regression or log-concave density estimation o er attractive alternatives to traditional nonparametric methods. Shape-constrained estimation often has an easyto- optimize likelihood, no tuning parameter, and an adaptivity property where the sample complexity adapts to the complexity of the underlying functions. In this dissertation, we posit that shape-constrained estimation has an additional advantage in that they are naturally suited to the high-dimensional regime, where the number of variables is large...

Short-Sighted Probabilistic Planning

Felipe W. Trevizan
Planning is an essential part of intelligent behavior and a ubiquitous task for both humans and rational agents. One framework for planning in the presence of uncertainty is probabilistic planning, in which actions are described by a probability distribution over their possible outcomes. Probabilistic planning has been applied to different real-world scenarios such as public health, sustainability and robotics; however, the usage of probabilistic planning in practice is limited due to the poor performance of...

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