Updates and News

The European Branch of Kagakusha.net

posted Jan 30, 2013, 4:47 AM by Akihiro Nakashima   [ updated Feb 4, 2013, 5:25 PM ]

I gave a short presentation about the establishment of the European branch of kagakusha.net at the 8th Meeting for Japanese Researcher based in the UK hosted by JSPS London on the 28th Jan, 2013. In addition to the announcement, the first project proposal planned as the European branch was presented to the other researchers to ask for their opinions. Please feel free to send me an email to ask any question regarding this branch or the project.

What is Kagakusha Network?

Kagakusha Network (or "Scientist Network") is a group of young Japanese scientists and students who have studied or aspire to study abroad. 

Our aim is first to enhance interdisciplinary communications between Japanese researchers all over the world, and second, to encourage young people in Japan to challenge the world by sharing members' experiences and valuable information with them. 

In the era of expanding globalization, we believe that people who are internationally-minded and are able to flexibly cope with the dynamically changing environment are in need. At the same time, people who are willing to challenge any difficulty with deep specialty are expected. We believe that studying abroad provides a way to achieve it. 

Since its establishment in 2000, the Kagakusha Network has been dedicated to these aims through sending out periodical e-mail newsletters, articles, publications, events, etc. The network is currently run by more than 20 volunteers around the world, and more than 400 people are subscribing our mailing list. 

In 2012, we successfully held our first conference at the Tokyo International Forum. We also announced the establishment of a European branch as well as the launch of various collaborations with different organizations to further promote globalization. Please feel free to contact us if you are interested in being a part of our activities or wish to be a collaborator in the future. 

LinkedIn Group page (just launched on 5th Feb, 2013)

Publication: Object Recognition Based on Shape and Function

posted Sep 10, 2012, 5:59 AM by Akihiro Nakashima   [ updated Sep 10, 2012, 6:19 AM ]

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark -- The following information was released by the University of Arkansas:

Eguchi publishes in UA's Inquiry Journal of Undergraduate Research.

Akihiro Eguchi published his recent paper "Object Recognition Based on Shape and Function: Inspired by Children's Word Acquisition" in University of Arkansas' Inquiry Journal of Undergraduate Research, which is now available on the web:  http://inquiry.uark.edu.   Eguchi's paper uses the Microsoft Kinect to recognize common objects and common gestures (form and function) and finds that, for object recognition by computer, both kinds of evidence taken together are better than either taken alone.

The second diploma

posted Aug 19, 2012, 6:46 AM by Akihiro Nakashima   [ updated Jan 9, 2014, 11:02 PM ]

It took a while to get here, but I finally received the second diploma from the University. I received the first degree in B.S. computer science with highest honor (summa cum laude) in 2011. Then, this time, the second degree was in B.A. psychology, again summa cum laude.
I thank many people who had been caring about me in this four years. I especially thank Dr. Thompson and Dr. Behrend for their kindness and support in all our interactions. Without their guidance and encouragement, my time as an undergraduate student would have been far less exciting.
Finally, I am grateful to my parents, Koichi and Yoshiko, for always caring about me from overseas and for making possible my study in the United States.
I will keep trying my best when I go to the U.K. and hope I can return many great things back to all of you.
Thank you.

Everything is alive: towards the future wisdom Web of things

posted Aug 11, 2012, 1:26 AM by Akihiro Nakashima   [ updated Aug 11, 2012, 8:23 PM ]

My last work at the U of Ark. was accepted by World Wide Web journal and is now available at Springerlink.com:

Journal: WORLD WIDE WEB (IF 1.76 / H-index 40)
Year: 2012
DOI: 10.1007/s11280-012-0182-4
TitleEverything is alive: towards the future wisdom Web of things
Authors: Akihiro Eguchi, Hung Nguyen and Craig W. Thompson
The Everything is Alive (EiA) project at University of Arkansas is focused on pervasive computing. We consider that every physical object can be a living smart object and any services can be a living phenomenon. The goal of EiA is to make everything alive to make our lives revive with the objective to make use of all objects and services surrounding us to make our life better. Our project is goal-oriented, and the scope of this project is broad, encompassing Ubiquitous Intelligence, Cyber-Individual, Brain Informatics, and Web Intelligence. In this paper, we discuss how those technologies can be integrated together and fit into a seamless cycle like the one proposed in the Wisdom Web of Things (W2T). We also provide two case studies from our EiA project. The first case study is to demonstrate how a concept first tested in a virtual environment can be successfully implemented in the real world later when technological advances finally caught up. The data collection step and the ability to manually control smart objects of the W2T cycle are fulfilled in this step. The second case study is to show how the software simulator and hardware implementation are abstracted from the underlying algorithm, and thus, it serves as an example of how virtual worlds can be used as a test bed for W2T, especially with regards to the development of the remaining steps of the W2T cycle. 

Attending as a panelist at a seminar on “A Guidepost for Aspiring Global Leaders in Science” on July 22 in Tokyo

posted Jul 13, 2012, 8:31 AM by Akihiro Nakashima   [ updated Jan 31, 2013, 3:46 PM ]

New York, NY -- The following information was released by the Friends of Today, inc.:

Kagakusha Network (or “Scientist Network”),  a group of young scientists and students who have studied or aspire to study abroad, will organize a symposium entitled ”A Guidepost for Aspiring Global Leaders in Science” on July 22, 2012 (Sun), 1:30 pm-5 pm at the Tokyo Kokusai Forum, as a major public  event combined with their First Annual Meeting.

Dr. Keiko Sugimoto (Institute of Physical and Chemical Research, Japan) and Prof. Yuichiro Anzai (President of JSPS, the past President of Keio University) will be keynote speakers, and researchers who have earned their Ph.D. degrees will provide valuable information based on their experiences to those who wish to study abroad.   Admission is free. Advance reservations are required.

For details, see http://www.kagakusha.net/conference

The slide presented at the conference is uploaded. [view download]

Done with the second thesis defense for Psychology degree

posted Apr 21, 2012, 2:49 PM by Akihiro Nakashima

I have successfully completed my thesis defense for the second bachelor degree in Psychology on April 12th. The thesis title was cultural bias during word acquisition. Children are known to use various learning biases to efficiently develop their language skills.  Prior studies have confirmed that young children keep track of reliability histories of possible teachers in order to selectively learn words. Furthermore, it has been shown that they are less likely to learn from foreign language speakers or foreign names of objects. Recent studies even indicated that children seem to change their patterns of learning just by hearing the cultural background of the target objects. The purpose of this thesis is to investigate the cultural bias in word learning among 2- to 3-year-olds. We hypothesized that children would be less likely to learn object names and functions when they were told those objects and/or the teacher were from another country. The result of the experiment showed no evidence to support this hypothesis; however, we found that participants performed very poorly in the novel word learning task, yet very well on the novel function learning task.  Possible reasons for these findings are discussed.

Accepted Into Oxford DPhil Program

posted Apr 21, 2012, 2:33 PM by Akihiro Nakashima

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark -- The following information was released by the University of Arkansas:

Senior CSCE and Psychology double major, Akihiro Eguchi, spent last weekend on an invited trip to Oxford and the result is that he has been accepted into their DPhil program in computational neuroscience at Oxford Foundation for Theoretical Neuroscience and Artificial Intelligence.

Last year Akihiro completed his CSCE BS thesis under Dr. Craig Thompson using the Microsoft Kinect to recognize objects like a toothbrush and gestures like brushing your teeth that are the first steps in recognizing sequences of gestures like those that make up complex workflows like getting ready for work. Computers do not deal well with this kind of information but Akihiro provided some excellent first steps.

This year Akihiro is completing his Psychology BA thesis on children’s language acquisition under Dr. Douglas Behrend and is learning from real human behavior. At the University of Oxford, his research will focus on the grand challenge question of how computers can think like humans. In particular, his work will focus on the development of biologically accurate computer models of visual processing in the primate brain.

In the field of computer science, transform invariant visual object recognition can be implemented by storing a model of target objects described as a set of coordinates in three-dimensional space and applying computational algorithms to perform various transforms like translation, rotation, and scaling. His interest is in understanding at the neuronal and synaptic level, how our brain performs these kinds of visual tasks. He believes that this question can be answered through computer modeling by accurately simulating the behavior of individual neurons, the interactions between these neurons, and the concurrent learning at the synaptic connections as the network is exposed to visual input.

Received the Diploma

posted Feb 13, 2012, 6:50 PM by Akihiro Nakashima   [ updated Feb 13, 2012, 6:52 PM ]

     I received the diploma for my undergraduate degree in B.S. computer science today. Thanks to all the support from many people, I'm so glad that I could graduate with Summa Cum Laude as well as being recognized as the outstanding graduating senior of computer science in 2011. I also received an invitation from an engineering honors society, Tau Beta Pi, today, and I am pretty happy with those news.
     I am currently finishing up my second degree in B.A. Psychology. Conducting an experiment with children is very different experience from what I had been working on in the field of computer science, but I really enjoy doing that. I hope it is going to be the great last semester at U of A.

Young Children Needed for Language Development Study

posted Jan 20, 2012, 9:52 PM by Akihiro Nakashima   [ updated Nov 9, 2012, 1:27 PM ]

The Wordplay Lab, under the direction of Dr. Douglas Behrend in the department of psychology, is seeking children from 2 to 3 years of age to participate in a study of word learning this semester.

The study will examine children’s attention to speaker and object characteristics during word learning, will take place on campus, and take between 15 and 20 minutes to complete.

If you are the parent or guardian of a young child and are interested in participating or have any questions about this study, please contact Akihiro Eguchi at **** or Behrend ****, or call the department of psychology at 575-4256. You can also visit the lab's homepage at ****. Parents of older children who are interested in participating in our other studies can complete the Family Information on the Wordplay Lab's homepage. Thank you in advance for your help.

Smart Household Robot with Android

posted Dec 16, 2011, 12:17 AM by Akihiro Nakashima   [ updated Dec 17, 2011, 11:56 PM ]

We presented our first demo of smart household Robot with Android at A.I. class on 8th. Here is the link to the presentation file I used at that day [View Download], and the video recorded demo is the following.
We are currently working on the paper.

For more info: project page

1-10 of 19