Advances in three exciting areas of technological innovation–computer games, genomics, and network science–will be presented by faculty in the Baskin School of Engineering at the school’s annual Research Review Day on Thursday, October 20, at UC Santa Cruz. In addition to faculty research presentations, the event will include plenary talks by experts in the three focus areas and a graduate student poster session. The event is free, but advance registration at rr.soe.ucsc.edu is required.

“We are very excited about the lineup of speakers and topics for this year’s event. These are areas of research in which our faculty and students are making important contributions and where we have strong connections with Silicon Valley industry,” said Art Ramirez, dean of the Baskin School of Engineering.

Bill Mooney, studio vice president at Zynga, will give a plenary talk on “Behavioral psychology and economics in the virtual world: Giving people free stuff and controlling the variables.” Mooney will discuss interesting unanswered questions regarding optimal pricing of virtual goods, predicting user behavior, and other considerations in social games such as Zynga’s Farmville.

David Haussler, distinguished professor of biomolecular engineering at UC Santa Cruz and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator, will give a plenary talk on cancer genomics. As the cost of DNA sequencing continues to fall, cancer genome sequencing may become a widespread clinical practice. Haussler’s group is in the forefront of efforts to establish a national infrastructure for handling cancer genome sequencing data.

The plenary talk on network science will feature Cisco distinguished engineer Flavio Bonomi, vice president and head of advanced architecture and research at Cisco. Bonomi has led a number of Cisco’s advanced architecture activities and contributed to the establishment of Cisco’s virtual, distributed research organization, collaborating with a growing network of industry and university partners.

A broad range of faculty presentations will take place throughout the day. Speakers include Michael Mateas, associate professor of computer science and director of the Center for Games and Playable Media, who will describe fundamental work at the intersection of art, science, and design; Joshua Stuart, associate professor of biomolecular engineering, who will discuss analysis of integrated cancer genomics data; Nader Pourmand, associate professor of biomolecular engineering, who will discuss advances in DNA sequencing technologies; Hamid Sadjadpour, professor of electrical engineering, who will describe the interaction between social networks and wireless communication networks; and Luca de Alfaro, professor of computer science, who will discuss online reputation systems.

All presentations will be held in the Engineering 2 building on the UCSC campus. Additional information about Research Review Day, including a detailed program with a complete list of presenters and topics, is available online at rr.soe.ucsc.edu.