PhD Candidates Woo-Sang Lim and Choong-Kook Yoo from the School of Computing have been awarded the 2016 Google PhD Fellowship. Lim and Yoo’s advising professors are Professor Doo-Hwan Bae and Professor Joon-Hwa Song, respectively.
The Google PhD Fellowship Program was founded in 2009 to recognize outstanding graduate students in the field of computer science. It is committed to raising and supporting future innovators in research and industry. This year, the Google PhD Fellowship was awarded to a total of 52 students worldwide. The program limited East Asia to eight recipients from South Korea, Japan, Mainland China, and Hong Kong but ultimately awarded six fellowships. Seven research fields pertinent to East Asia are computational neuroscience; machine learning; machine perception, speech technology and computer vision; mobile computing; natural language processing; robotics; and systems and networking. Other than East Asia, 39 fellows have been selected from North America, Europe, and the Middle East. The one-year fellowship program awards each recipient 10,000 USD, access to a Google Research Mentor, and the opportunity to apply for a paid internship.
Lim and Yoo were among the six students selected from East Asia and the only students selected from South Korea. They have been chosen under the machine learning and mobile computing categories, respectively. Lim’s research deals with efficient algorithms in decomposing large-scale matrices. He has proposed an inventive method of decompressing positive semi-definite (PSD) matrices with unprecedented accuracy and efficiency. By analyzing the mathematical errors associated with PSD matrix decomposition, which is a relevant and frequently-addressed problem in machine learning, he was able to develop a novel way of data compression. His research was presented at the International Conference on Machine Learning.
Yoo focused his research on an original service and support system using mobile sensors. He developed a powerful program capable of accurately calculating the three-dimensional distance to objects using mobile phone cameras. Other research by Yoo includes analysis by mobile phones of the nonlinguistic aspects of conversations to aid language development of handicapped children. His findings have been awarded the Best Paper Award at the 2016 Computer- Supported Cooperative Work (CSCW) Conference.