April 7, 2016

Congratulations to John Winder for being accepted to the IJCAI-16 Doctoral Consortium, to be held at IJCAI in New York this July. John received very positive reviews for his proposal to develop an extended MDP framework using concept formation to create new abstractions in complex domains.

December 9, 2015

Congratulations to Robert Holder for successfully defending his Ph.D. dissertation today! After 12 years of perseverance as a part-time Ph.D. student, we are all very proud of Rob's terrific work and contributions to creating plan libraries for rapid real-time replanning in dynamic domains.

April 12, 2013

Congratulations to former MAPLE postdoc Fusun Yaman, who is expecting twins in August, and had not one but three papers accepted to AAAI! (None of which she will be able to present, since her doctor absolutely forbids her from traveling in late September...)

February 1, 2013

After nearly eight years in the lab, James MacGlashan defended his Ph.D. dissertation with flying colors last Friday, January 25. (For posterity, I dug up James's very first email to me, back in 2005:


I would like to apply. I believe I would be most qualified for the first project (assembling radio playlists). I've been working with websites for quite some time and would be able to start during the summer. Below I have my resume attached.

Thus begins an era... Eventually we taught him how his words in English correctly to order.)

James will stick around the lab for a few months before moving on to a postdoc with Michael Littman at Brown University. Congratulations, James -- we will miss you!

August 21, 2012

Congratulations to Yasaman Haghpanah, who successfullly defended her Ph.D. dissertation today! (And just in time... Yasaman is also expecting a baby in a few weeks!)

August 16, 2012

The second annual UMBC Google CS4HS Workshop was a great success -- check out the photos on the website, and the workshop materials that are linked from the schedule page. Be sure to check back later for our wonderful event video produced by Shelby Clarke! Immediately following the workshop was our CE 21--Maryland Minisummit, which brought together around 50 educators, administrators, and industry professionals to talk about the state of CS education in Maryland, to build community, and to start working towards improved access and curriculum for CS education for all high school students in Maryland. Visit our minisummit website for more information about the event, and stay tuned for updates about our larger summit meeting to be held in Spring 2013!

Many thanks to the students who helped to make these events possible: Shelby, James MacGlashan, Shawn Squire, Abigail Williams, and Rebecca Chhay.

For those who haven't heard, Marie, along with longtime Friend-of-MAPLE Michael Littman, will be co-chairing AAAI-13, which will be held in Bellevue, Washington, from July 14-18, 2013. Join us!

Coming soon: Yasaman Haghpanah will be defending her Ph.D. dissertation on Tuesday, August 21, at 11am in ITE 325B. Come out and show your support!

April 27, 2012

Congratulations to all of this week's student presenters from MAPLE! Alex Morrow did a terrific job at what I think was his first public research presentation on Wednesday at URCAD. Today, Yasaman Haghpanah gave an extremely polished presentation of her dissertation research at the oral presentation session of the GRC. (She handled the Q&A session especially well -- the next speaker was a no-show, so she got 10 extra minutes of grilling and dealt with it very gracefully!)

Petr Babkin, Zachary Kurtz, and Max Morawski all had terrific posters (each with exactly one uncaught typo) and gave very clear and interesting presentations. Even though the poster judges had essentially no background in computer science, you could tell that they understood the general ideas of the work and why it would be useful for real applications.

Also, congratulations to Yasaman for having her paper on rating methods for SmartGrid markets accepted as a short paper at the International Conference on Electronic Commerce, and to James MacGlashan, Kevin Winner, and Richard Adjogah (on what I assume is his first publication!) for their paper that will be presented at the AAAI Workshop on Grounding Language for Physical Systems in July.

Great job, everyone -- you did yourselves and MAPLE proud!

November 2, 2011

Joe Tuzo (CMSC BS '11) and JJ Seymour (CMSC BS '12) will be presenting papers at the upcoming AAAI Fall Symposium on Complex Adaptive Systems, to be held in Arlington, VA, on November 4-6. Joe's paper (co-authored with JJ and Prof. desJardins), " Using a Cellular Automaton Simulation to Determine an Optimal Lane Changing Strategy on a Multi-Lane Highway," and JJ's paper (co-authored with Joe and Prof. desJardins), "Ant Colony Optimization in a Changing Environment," were both based on the students' class projects for Prof. desJardins's "Computation, Complexity, and Emergence" course in Spring 2011.

November 2, 2011

Yasaman Haghpanah (CMSC Ph.D. Candidate) will present her research on "A Trust and Reputation Model for Supply Chain Management" in the PhD Forum at the Grace Hopper Celebration for Women in Computing, which will be held November 9-12, 2011, in Portland, Oregon. Dr. desJardins will also attend the conference as a participant in the Grace Hopper Senior Women's Summit.

May 2, 2011

Congratulations to Amy Ciavolino, Robert Deloatch, and Eliana Feasley for winning the CSEE Research Review Day Undergraduate Research Award! Amy, Robert, and Eliana (who are part of MAPLE's "Playing to Program" group, along with David Walser) also presented their work at UMBC's URCAD in April, and have had a short paper accepted to the Second Annual Symposium on Educational Advances in Artificial Intelligence (EAAI-11), where they will present a short talk and a poster.

April 28, 2011

Congratulations to Peter Hamilton and David Walser for successfully defending their Master's theses today! They both passed with flying colors and only very minor changes to the thesis document. As the second student to defend today, David is officially Marie's 20th MS student!

April 4, 2011

Congratulations to Yasaman Haghpanah for hitting a Doctoral Consortium Trifecta -- she was invited to participate in the IJCAI, AAMAS, and AAAI/SIGART Doctoral Consortiums. Yasaman also had a paper accepted to the 2011 Workshop on Agent Mediated Electronic Commerce (AMEC 2011), collocated with AAMAS in Taipei. On top of all that, as part of the AAMAS Doctoral Consortium, she will also be spending two months in Rotterdam on an extended stay at Wolf Ketter's lab at ERIM.

November 18, 2010

Congratulations to Yasaman Haghpanah for passing her preliminary examination with flying colors and advancing to candidacy. Welcome to ABD Land!

August 6, 2010

Congratulations to Patti Ordonez for having her paper (with Marie, Michael Lombardi, Christoph Lehmann, and Jim Fackler), "An animated multivariate visualization for physiological and clinical data in the ICU." accepted to the 1st ACM International Health Informatics Symposium (IHI-10).

Congratulations as well to alumnus Eric Eaton, who has accepted a Visiting Assistant Professor position in the computer science department at Bryn Mawr College!

May 20, 2010

The MAPLE Game Playing System is available for download!

May 13, 2010

Congratulations to James MacGlashan for a successful (and very well presented) preliminary exam. Welcome to candidacy!

April 23, 2010

Congratulations to Don Miner for successfully defending his Ph.D. dissertation!

March 23, 2010

Congratulations to Yasaman Haghpanah for having her AAAI student abstract accepted to AAAI-2010, and to James MacGlashan for being accepted to the 2010 AAAI/SIGART Doctoral Consortium. We're off to Atlanta! April 20, 2010: Late-breaking Atlanta news: Yasaman will also be presenting a paper at the AAAI-10 Workshop on Interactive Decision Theory and Game Theory. Nice job!

January 15, 2010

Please put Friday, February 26February 5 (10:00-2:00 in ITE 325B) on your calendars for the Spring 2010 MAPLE Research Colloquium! (Please RSVP to Marie if you plan to attend.)

May 14, 2009

...and still more congratulations, today to Patti Ordoñez for successfully passing her preliminary examination (dissertation proposal defense)!

April 29, 2009

Still more congratulations are in order, this time to Blazej Bulka for successfully defending his dissertation today. That's a four-for-four sweep, so I'll offer a blanket congratulations to our four new doctors-to-be (Blaz, Adam, Eric, and Mike) and I'll take one for myself, for tripling my total lifetime Ph.D. production in a single semester.

April 28, 2009

Congratulations to Peter Hamilton for receiving the 2009 CSEE Research Review Award for the Best Research by a CSEE Undergraduate, and to Adam Anthony for the 2009 CSEE Research Review Honorable Mention for Research by a CSEE PhD Student. Please join us at UMBC's South Campus on Friday for the Research Review Day , where Adam will give a talk on his research, and Peter will present his research in the poster session, and postdoc alumna Fusun Yaman will give a talk on her research on preference learning.

April 23, 2009

Congratulations to Patti Ordonez for receiving the 2009 Jessica Soto Peres Award, given by UMBC's Graduate Student Association to a student who contributes to the graduate community and to graduate student success.

Also, congratulations to Mike Smith, who is the first of this spring's crop of Ph.D. students to completely finish: Mike successfully defended his dissertation on March 27, and I turned in the signed approval sheet for the final version of his dissertation earlier this week.

March 26, 2009

Congratulations to Don Miner, who passed his preliminary examination on February 18 and officially advanced to candidacy on March 24. We also have exciting news from Patti Ordonez, who has been invited to spend two months working in Prof. Roger Marks' lab at MIT this summer.

Meanwhile, get ready for a flurry of news in the next few months, with four Ph.D. students defending their dissertations by the end of April (Mike Smith, Eric Eaton, Adam Anthony, and Blaz Bulka), and one more taking her preliminary examination in May (Patti Ordonez)!

February 9, 2009

Congratulations to Adam Anthony for receiving a tenure-track offer from Baldwin-Wallace College in Berea, Ohio (outside of Cleveland)!

We have a bumper crop of conference papers this year. Accepted papers include a FLAIRS-09 poster paper by Adam, Marie, and undergraduate Michael Lombardi, a paper at AGI-09 (the Second Conference on Artificial General Intelligence) by Don Miner, Marc Pickett, and Marie, and a joint paper with colleagues at SRI International, Fusun Yaman, and myself at the AAAI Spring Symposium on Agents that Learn that from Human Teacher. Submitted papers include two papers under review at ICML (one with Kiri Wagstaff at JPL and James MacGlashan, and one by Eric Eaton, Marie, and Terran Lane at UNM), two under review at IJCAI (one with Eric and one with Don Miner), plus a paper with Kiri and Eric under review at JETAI. Papers in preparation include a special issue of the AI Journal on preferences (Fusun and former UMBC undergraduate Tom Walsh, who's now working with Michael Littman at Rutgers) and two papers for KDD-09, both with Adam. Plus many more in the pipeline. Whew!

August 25, 2008

A belated congratulations to Brandon Wilson for successfully defending his master's thesis in early August. Brandon has the distinction of receiving the 20th graduate degree to be awarded to Dr. desJardins' students! (12 MS theses, 6 MS projects, and 2 PhD dissertations)

Eric Eaton has moved to Philadelphia and joined the research staff at Lockheed-Martin's Advanced Technology Laboratories in Cherry Hill, NJ, but is still officially a member of the lab until he defends his dissertation (target date: October).

Welcome to new PhD student James MacGlashan and MS student Wesley Griffin. With PhD students Don Miner and Patti Ordonez, who both joined last year, and long-timers Adam Anthony and Blaz Bulka, plus in absentia Eric and part-timer Mike Smith, that brings the lab total to 7 PhD students and one MS student, plus a handful of undergraduates. We have a freshly cleaned lab, new desk assignments, and lots of spiffy-looking posters on the lab walls to mark the "new generation" of MAPLEites!

June 18, 2008

Congratulations to Eric Eaton for his ECML-2008 paper, Brandon Wilson for his ICAPS-08 paper (co-authored with Mark Roberts and Adele Howe of Colorado State University), Patti Ordonez for her AMIA-2008 paper, and Don Roberts and Peter Hamilton for their AAAI-2008 student abstract!

May 20, 2008

Lots of opportunities to congratulate MAPLE members:

May 4, 2007

Congratulations to Adam Anthony and Jon Labin, who both successfully defended their master's theses on Monday. (It was a busy day!) Also congratulations to Soumi Ray, honorary MAPLE member (actually a CORALite, but we'll overlook that) for successfully defending her thesis (supervised by Tim Oates) on Wednesday.

This week was a banner week in MAPLE: Marie also received word that the University Faculty Review Committee unanimously voted to recomment that she be granted tenure, and Fusun Yaman's paper (co-authored by Marie) on "More-or-Less CP-Networks" was accepted to Uncertainty in Artificial Intelligence. This year's conference had a 32% acceptance rate. Nice job, Fusun!

March 7, 2007

Congratulations to Eric Eaton, who has passed his preliminary exam (and will advance to candidacy when the paperwork clears...!

Congratulations also to Ryan Carr '07, who was accepted to the CS Ph.D. program at College Park, and will start there this fall. This was a very competitive year, with nearly 1000 applications received from what I heard, so the competition was tough!

January 19, 2007

Congratulations to Blazej Bulka, who has successfully passed his preliminary exam and advanced to candidacy!

July 25, 2006

Congratulations to Dr. Qianjun Xu for having the final copy of her dissertation signed and handed off to the graduate school!

May 26, 2006

Congratulations to Qianjun Xu, who successfully defended her dissertation today!

April 2, 2006

The latest excitement in the lab:

November 28, 2005

Congratulations to the following recent student accomplishments:

Also, a belated congratulations to Qianjun Xu for receiving the first annual Carl Smith Award for the best student paper in Discovery Science'05.

May 2, 2005

The following papers were all accepted in the last couple of weeks:

Way to go!

December 5, 2004

Qianjun passed her preliminary exam today, and will advance to candidacy after the paperwork works its way through the bureaucracy. Congratulations!

September 3, 2004

After passing his preliminary exam on August 30, Matt Gaston was officially advanced to candidacy for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy. Matt is the first MAPLE student to advance to candidacy. Congratulations!

August 12, 2004

Yan passed her Master's Thesis defense today! Congratulations to her! Unlike another recent Master's recipient, who lied about Disney Land, Yan really will travel to California for a relaxing vacation before returning home to China.

August 6, 2004

Mithun Sheshagiri passed his Master's thesis defense and will graduate this semester. Congratulations!

April 30, 2004

Priyang successfully defended his Master's Thesis today and passed! Congratulations, Priyang! When asked what he was going to do next, he replied, "I'm going to Disney Land!" When asked what he was most looking forward to, he replied, "sleeping." Those interested in occupying his soon-to-be-empty desk should send their bribes and gifts directly to Priyang.


April 29, 2004

Congratulations to Priyang and Marie for having the following paper accepted to the AAAI 2004 Workshop on Forming and Maintaining Coalitions in Adaptive Multiagent Systems, which will be held in San Jose, CA, in August:

Priyang Rathod and Marie desJardins
"Stable Team Formation Among Self-Interested Agents"


Also, congratulations to Qianjun, Eric, and Marie for submitting the following papers to the 2004 European Conference on Machine Learning:

Qianjun Xu, Marie desJardins, Eric Eaton, and Kiri Wagstaff
"Efficient SVM-Based Preference Learning"

Eric Eaton and Marie desJardins
"Learning Multiple Concepts Online with an Ensemble of Classifiers"


Those on the VisARD project have been busy publishing, so congratulations to Poonam, Penny, Tim, and Marie for submitting the following papers:

"Visualizing Change in Attributes of Relational Data Graphs Over Time" (Submitted to InfoVis'04)

"Visualizing Multi-Valued and Uncertain Attributes Using Glyphs"
(Submitted to Vis'04)


January 16, 2004

Undergraduate Research Position Open (This position has been filled)

Dr. desJardins is looking for one or two CMSC undergraduates to work on an NSF-funded research project. The project, which is a collaborative effort with Dr. Kiri Wagstaff at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in California, is investigating ways to incorporate background knowledge into machine learning techniques. Our current application areas are classifying and clustering sky catalog data, and identifying earth-science images for downloading across a limited-bandwidth channel. Involvement with the project could be through an independent study project (499) or as a paid hourly position.

Minimal qualifications are:
- Junior or senior standing (preferably graduating December 2004 or May 2005)
- A GPA of at least 3.5

Strongly preferred qualifications are:
- An A in CMSC 341
- CMSC 441 and 471
- Some background in astronomy

If you are interested in learning more about the project, the MAPLE Lab, or applying for a position, please contact Dr. desJardins by e-mail, or phone (410-455-3967), or stop by ITE 337 if her door is open.


December 17, 2003
At 10:34 am, this beautiful bouncing baby website was born, weighing in at 0 lbs 0 oz and 725,838 bytes.