UW Today


July 16, 2015

New book by UW’s Philip Howard urges democratic values for coming Internet of Things

"Pax Technica: How the Internet of Things May Set Us Free or Lock Us Up," by University of Washington professor Philip Howard, was published this spring by Yale University Press.

UW professor Philip Howard discusses his new book, “Pax Technica: How the Internet of Things May Set us Free or Lock Us Up,” published this spring by Yale University Press.


July 13, 2015

Robotics and the law: When software can harm you

An artist's concept of a NASA robotic refueling mission. Shown here, cameras light the way as a tool from a robotic refueling mission approaches a satellite to cut wire, one of the steps to remotely accessing a satellite's triple-sealed fuel valve.

Twenty years in, the law is finally starting to get used to the Internet. Now it is imperative, says Ryan Calo, assistant professor in the UW School of Law, that the law figure out how to deal effectively with the rise of robotics and artificial intelligence.


June 30, 2015

‘The Shape of the New’: Two UW profs, four ‘big ideas’ in new book

"The Shape of the New: Four Big Ideas and How they Made the Modern World," by UW Jackson School faculty Scott L. Montgomery and Daniel Chirot, was published in May be Princeton University Press.

The concepts of freedom, equality, evolution and democracy lie at the heart of “The Shape of the New: Four Big Ideas and How they Changed the World,” by Scott L. Montgomery and Daniel Chirot of the UW’s Jackson School of International Studies.


June 25, 2015

Harry Potter celebrated with ‘Muggles & Magic’ library exhibit

A new, staff-created exhibit brings a little bit of Hogwarts to Suzzallo and Allen libraries, with books, games, action figures and even scholarly articles about that famous, lightning-browed “boy who lived.” The exhibit is called “Muggles & Magic: Harry Potter @ the Libraries.” The main attraction sits just outside the Suzzallo Reading Room, which is…


June 23, 2015

Visualizing the cosmos: UW astronomer Andrew Connolly and the promise of big data

UW astronomy professor Andrew Connolly at TED2014 at the Vancouver, B.C., convention center.

A conversation with UW astronomer Andrew Connolly on the coming Large Synoptic Survey Telescope and the promise of big data to the study of the universe.


June 22, 2015

Spectrum of life: Nonphotosynthetic pigments could be biosignatures of life on other worlds

Laguna Colorada is a shallow salt lake in the southwest of Bolivia. One of several places on Earth whose colors are dominated by nonphotosynthetic pigments. Eddie Schwieterman of the University of Washington has research on how such nonphotosynthetic biosignatures might appear on exoplanets, or those outside our solar system.

To find life in the universe, it helps to know what it might look like. If there are organisms on other planets that do not rely wholly on photosynthesis — as some on Earth do not — how might those worlds appear from light-years away?


June 11, 2015

Nearly half of African-American women know someone in prison

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African-American adults — particularly women — are much more likely to know or be related to someone behind bars than whites, according to the first national estimates of Americans’ ties to prisoners.


June 8, 2015

David Shields and UW alum publish new collaborative memoir

The prolific David Shields, New York Times best-selling author and University of Washington professor of English, has a new book out, titled “That Thing You Do With Your Mouth: The Sexual Autobiography of Samantha Matthews as Told to David Shields.” The book is an extended monologue by Matthews — who is Shields’ cousin once removed…


Atmospheric signs of volcanic activity could aid search for life

An eruption of the Calbuco Volcano in southern Chile. A team led by the UW's Amit Misra used data from volcanic eruptions on Earth to predict what an Earth-like exoplanet might look like during such eruptions.

Planets with volcanic activity are considered better candidates for life than worlds without such heated internal goings-on.
Now, graduate students at the UW have found a way to detect volcanic activity in the atmospheres of faraway planets when they transit, or pass in front of their host stars.


June 5, 2015

Finding his voice: UW aphasia expert’s work with country musician Billy Mize featured in film

Country musician Billy Mize worked with great people in his long career — Merle Haggard, Willie Nelson, Buck Owens, Glen Campbell and many more. He also worked in a different way with Diane Kendall, now a University of Washington professor of speech and hearing sciences and director of the UW’s Aphasia Research Laboratory. Aphasia is…


June 3, 2015

‘Stable beams’ achieved: Large Hadron Collider at CERN research facility begins recording data

Scientists at the European Organization for Nuclear Research are dwarfed by the Atlas particle detector, part of the Large Hadron Collider.

The Large Hadron Collider has started recording data from the highest-energy particle collisions ever achieved on Earth. This new data, the first recorded since 2012, will enable an international collaboration of researchers — including many from the UW — to study the Higgs boson, search for dark matter and develop a more complete understanding of the laws of nature.


June 2, 2015

UW psychology professor Yuichi Shoda honored for famous long-term study on delayed gratification

Yuichi Shoda, UW professor of psychology and recipient of 2015 Golden Goose Award from AUP.

University of Washington psychology professor Yuichi Shoda has been honored for his ongoing participation in a well-known — and perhaps slightly misunderstood — long-term study about delayed gratification.


May 29, 2015

History professor Elena Campbell publishes book on Russia and the ‘Muslim question’

Elena I. Campbell, a University of Washington associate professor of history, has published her first book, which studies Russia’s policies toward Muslims in the 19th and 20th centuries and the impact of the “Muslim Question” on the modernizing path the country would follow. “The Muslim Question and Russian Imperial Governance” was published early this spring…


May 28, 2015

Physicists conduct most precise measurement yet of interaction between atoms and carbon surfaces

An illustration of atoms sticking to a carbon nanotube, affecting the electrons in its surface.

UW physicists have conducted the most precise and controlled measurements yet of the interaction between the atoms and molecules that comprise air and the type of carbon surface used in battery electrodes and air filters — key information for improving those technologies.


May 26, 2015

New Center for Communication, Difference and Equity opens

The University of Washington communication department will open its new Center for Communication, Difference and Equity with public events May 27 to 29, on campus and off. “The CCDE is a space — a physical space, intellectual space and community space — where we as a department and as a university are going to be…


May 22, 2015

Beach scene, text game, draping still life — and pie — in graduate student art show

"Three Good Things Yesterday," by Maria Rose Adams.

A look at the annual exhibit for students graduating with master’s degrees in art and design, at the Henry Art Gallery.


May 20, 2015

“Student Voices Making Change” symposium May 27 at HUB

More than two hundred high school students from four area high schools will visit the campus for a daylong seminar in the HUB May 27 as part of Teachers and Texts, which in turn is part of the UW in the High School program, sponsored by Professional and Continuing Education. The event is called the…


May 18, 2015

David Shields’ book — now a James Franco film — to screen at Hugo House

“I Think You’re Totally Wrong: A Quarrel,” a film directed by James Franco based on UW English Professor David Shields‘ latest book, with former student Caleb Powell, will be shown at Seattle literary venue Hugo House at 7 p.m. May 30, 31 and June 1. The screenings will be U.S. premiere for the film, which…


Runstad Center graduate student team wins low-income housing challenge

An interdisciplinary team of UW graduate students and its proposal for a 69-unit affordable housing development in Tacoma’s Wedge neighborhood has won the 24th annual Bank of America Low-Income Housing Challenge, held May 14 in San Francisco. The team was organized by the Runstad Center for Real Estate Studies, which is in the UW College…


May 15, 2015

David Ferry to give annual Theodore Roethke reading May 28

Poet David Ferry will give the 52nd annual Theodore Roethke Memorial Poetry Reading at 8 p.m. Thursday, May 28, Kane Hall’s room 130, also known as the Roethke Auditorium. The event is free and the public is invited. Ferry is the author of eight books of poetry, including “Bewilderment: New Poems and Translations,” which won…


May 12, 2015

Housing market strong, affordability issues linger in first quarter of 2015

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Washington state’s housing market was strong in the first quarter of 2015, according to the UW’s Runstad Center for Real Estate Studies.


May 8, 2015

New book celebrates work, legacy of UW landscape architect Richard Haag

Thaisa Way's book on landscape architect Richard Haag was published by University of Washington Press.

Thaisa Way, associate professor of landscape architecture in the UW College of Built Environments, discusses her book, “The Landscape Architecture of Richard Haag: From Modern Space to Urban Ecological Design.”


May 7, 2015

Anthropologist Ruth Behar to deliver 40th annual Stroum Lectures May 18, 20

Ruth Behar, professor of anthropology at the University of Michigan, will deliver the 40th annual Samuel and Althea Stroum Lectures at 7:30 p.m. May 18 and 20, in room 220 of Kane Hall. Together, the lectures are titled “Dreams of Sefarad: Explorations of Modern Sephardic Identity, from Istanbul to Havana and Seattle.” They are presented…


May 5, 2015

Documents that Changed the World: The Exaltation of Inanna, 2300 BCE

The disk of Enheduanna shows the high priestess making an offering to her god.

In the latest installment of his Documents that Changed the World podcast series, Joe Janes looks back more than 4,000 years at the Exaltation of Inanna, and what might be the first-ever claim of authorship.


April 24, 2015

Harmonic Canon? Quadrangularis Reversum? Wild musical world of Harry Partch comes to UW

Charles Corey, research associate with the UW School of Music, plays the Bass Marimba, one of about 50 instruments invented by musical genius and eccentric Harry Partch (1901-1974) that now reside at the School of Music.

The bass marimba, big as a desk and twice as tall, uses an organ pipe as a resonator and answers the mallet with a musically wooden plonk. The Chromelodeon II, a retuned reed organ, wheezes a trio of soft tones with the press of a key. And the elaborate Cloud-Chamber Bowls deliver tones ranging from…


April 22, 2015

UW key player in new NASA coalition to search for life on distant worlds

The search for life beyond our solar system requires cooperation across scientific disciplines -- the way the UW-based Virtual Planetary Laboratory has been working since 2001. Now, NASA's NExSS collaboration will take a similarly interdisciplinary approach to the search for life. Participants include those who study Earth as a life-bearing planet (lower right), those researching the diversity of solar system planets (left), and those on the new frontier, discovering worlds orbiting other stars in the galaxy (upper right).

The NASA Astrobiology Institute’s Virtual Planetary Laboratory, based at the University of Washington, has long brought an interdisciplinary approach to the study of planets and search for life outside our solar system. Now, a new NASA initiative inspired by the UW lab is embracing that same team approach to bring together 10 universities and two research institutions in the ongoing search for life on planets around other stars.


April 20, 2015

UW Stroum Center to host Spring Research Symposium May 1

The UW Stroum Center for Jewish Studies will host its third annual Spring Research Symposium 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Friday, May 1, in room 214 of the HUB. The event is free but advance registration is recommended. This half-day event highlights research by the five members of the 2014-15 Jewish Studies Graduate Fellowship, with topics ranging from…


April 17, 2015

Sheppard on Shostakovich: Professor of piano discusses upcoming recital

Craig Sheppard, professor of piano in the School of Music, will perform all of the 24 Preludes and Fugues, Opus 87, by Dmitri Shostakovich in a faculty recital at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, April 25, in Meany Hall. He answered a few questions about the music and his approach to the performance. In a 1993…


April 14, 2015

UW Information School’s Katie Davis gets NSF Early Career Award

Katie Davis, assistant professor at the University of Washington Information School, has received a Faculty Early Career Development Award from the National Science Foundation. Davis, who studies the role of digital media technologies in the lives of teenagers, will receive $759,462 over five years for a project titled “Digital Badges for STEM Education.” The work…


April 13, 2015

Violent methane storms on Titan may solve dune direction mystery

A view of Titan. Saturn's largest moon, with its ringed host in the background. New research from the University of Washington may solve a riddle of the direction of sand dunes on the moon's surface.

Titan, Saturn’s largest moon, has a hazy atmosphere and surface rivers, mountains, lakes and sand dunes. But the dunes and prevailing surface winds don’t point in the same direction. New research from UW astronomer Benjamin Charnay may have solved this mystery.


April 3, 2015

University of Washington undergraduates assist search for El Salvador’s disappeared children

The country of El Salvador was torn apart by a brutal civil war from 1980 to 1992 that took the lives of 75,000 civilians, many the victims of massacres that wiped out entire villages. Throughout that war, thousands of children were forcibly disappeared from their homes and communities by agents of the Salvadoran state as…


April 2, 2015

Public talk April 9 looks back at astronomy department’s 50 years

The UW Astronomy Department celebrates its 50th anniversary this school year. Julie Lutz, research professor emeritus of astronomy, will review that history in a free public talk at 4 p.m. Thursday, April 9, in the Physics/Astronomy Auditorium. The astronomy department was formed in 1965 by George Wallerstein, Paul Hodge and Theodor Jacobson, for whom a…


‘Fu-Go’ explores World War II Japanese balloon attacks on US

"Fu-Go: The Curious History of Japan's Balloon Bomb Attack on America," by Ross Coen, was published by University of Nebraska Press.

Ross Coen, UW doctoral student in history, discusses his book “Fu-Go: The Curious History of Japan’s Balloon Bomb Attack on America.”


March 30, 2015

UW faculty team for five-year study of Seattle’s minimum wage increase

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What will be the effects of the city of Seattle’s minimum wage ordinance? Faculty from the UW’s schools of public affairs, public health and social work are teaming up for The Seattle Minimum Wage Study, a five-year research project to learn that and more.


March 25, 2015

Labor Archives of Washington kicks off minimum-wage history project April 11

The Labor Archives of Washington, part of UW Libraries Special Collections Department, is creating an online resource called the Minimum Wage History Project to document the 2013-2014 campaign that succeeded in mandating a $15 minimum hourly wage in the cities of Seattle and Sea-Tac. The effort kicks off with a public program, “Preserving Solidarity Forever:…


March 23, 2015

Author Charles Johnson discusses new work — and the return of Emery Jones

"The Hard problem," the second book by Charles Johnson and his daughter, Elisheba Johnson, is now available.

Charles Johnson, English professor emeritus discusses three new books out, including the second children’s book in the Adventures of Emery Jones series, “The Hard Problem,” illustrated by Johnson himself.


March 18, 2015

Remembering architect, author, critic Norman Johnston, 1918 – 2015

Norman J. Johnston will be remembered as a dedicated and community-minded architect, city planner, teacher and critic. He died Monday, March 16, 2015, in his Seattle home. He was 96. Memorial for Norman J. Johnston 2 p.m. Sunday, May 31, University of Washington Club. Johnston earned a bachelor’s degree in art from the University of…


March 16, 2015

New ‘mediArcade’ in Allen Library supports multimedia work, play

UW Libraries has opened up a new multimedia space on the third floor of Allen library for the use of students, faculty and staff. It’s called the mediArcade, and is open weekdays 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. to those with a Husky card. With iMacs, large televisions and DVDs, video game consoles, several media editing…


March 13, 2015

iSchool’s Technology & Social Change Group to study online education in developing countries

Online education has great potential to improve lives, but few people in developing countries have access to such classes. The UW Information School’s Technology & Social Change Group will conduct research as part of a $1.55 million multiagency initiative to study and address this need. The project will include research on online course enrollment in…


March 11, 2015

‘Chaotic Earths’: Some habitable exoplanets could experience wildly unpredictable climates

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New research by UW astronomer Rory Barnes and co-authors describes possible planetary systems where a gravitational nudge from one planet with just the right orbital configuration and tilt could have a mild to devastating effect on the orbit and climate of another, possibly habitable world.



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