Three named as top young innovators
A Berkeley professor, graduate student and recent alumnus — all affiliated with the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences — have been named to MIT Technology Review’s 2018 list of “35 Innovators Under 35.”
Assistant professor Alessandro Chiesa is the co-founder of Zcash, a cryptocurrency that ensures complete privacy in online transactions. Using zero-knowledge cryptography, Zcash guarantees the validity of transactions while enabling users to shield sensitive data and protect themselves from identity theft.
Graduate student Chelsea Finn is working out of the Berkeley Artificial Intelligence Research Lab, creating algorithms that enable robots to learn as children do — by building on previous play and observations. Robots in her lab are tackling such challenges as using a wooden shape-sorting toy, in hopes of having robots master tasks by exploring instead of programming.
A research scientist at OpenAI, John Schulman (Ph.D.’16 EECS) is developing novel algorithms for reinforcement learning applications, which reward machines for a correct response. Schulman hopes these machine-learning algorithms can eventually be used in areas such as robot locomotion.
Photos: Top courtesy Alessandro Chiesa, middle by Kojo Acquah, bottom by Eric Louis Haines