User Experience Office helps campus technology fulfill its promise

Before Princeton University’s Pace Center for Civic Engagement revamped its website this past year, the center’s Communications Coordinator Gwen McNamara wanted to know more about who was visiting the site and how to make it a better resource for the entire campus. Representatives of the New Jersey Commission for the Blind and Visually Impaired demonstrate special screen readers for people with visual impairments at the workshop “Introduction to Accessibility,” one of six courses offered to Princeton University employees through the User Experience Office.

Maybe the first plague wasn’t that bad, say researchers

Researchers from Princeton’s Climate Change and History Research Initiative investigated pollen counts, coinage and burial practices, and many other data sets to study the first plague. They concluded that the first major plague of late antiquity, also known as the Justinianic Plague, may have had its effects overestimated.

New modeling will shed light on ways policy decisions affect human migration from sea level rise

A new modeling approach can help researchers, policymakers and the public better understand how policy decisions will influence human migration as sea levels rise around the globe, a paper published Nov. 26 in Nature Climate Change suggests.

Conley and Tilghman named AAAS Fellows

Dalton Conley, the Henry Putnam University Professor in Sociology, and Shirley M. Tilghman, president of the University, emeritus, and professor of molecular biology and public affairs, have been named 2019 fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) for their scientifically or socially distinguished work.

Princeton’s annual technology celebration spotlights innovation and societal impact

Speaking at Princeton’s annual technology showcase on Nov. 14, Princeton’s inaugural Vice Dean for Innovation Rodney Priestley delivered Princeton’s vision for engaging in entrepreneurship in ways that have societal impact. “Princeton’s informal motto is ‘In the nation’s service and the service of humanity,’” said Priestley, who is also a professor of chemical and biological engineering. “Our innovation efforts are very much in support of that motto.”

Princeton alumni Berlin, Tenkiang named Mitchell Scholars

Kyle Berlin, Princeton University’s 2018 valedictorian, and Achille Tenkiang, a University trustee, have been named George J. Mitchell Scholars. Twelve Mitchell Scholarships were awarded to students nationwide by the nonprofit U.S.-Ireland Alliance based in Arlington, Virginia.

Two million-year-old ice cores provide first direct observations of an ancient climate

Princeton University-led researchers have extracted 2 million-year-old ice cores from Antarctica that provide the first direct observations of Earth’s climate at a time when the furred early ancestors of modern humans still roamed.

Statistics show: Vocal music really is universal

Nearly 200 years ago, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow claimed that “Music is the universal language of mankind.” Over the past several years, an international team of researchers has explored music from around the world to determine whether that is true or merely cliché — and a Princetonian crunched the numbers.

Pioneering NASA engineer Darden shares her journey from ‘human computer’ to expert in supersonic flight

In the late 1960s, Christine Darden was one of many women working as “human computers” at NASA’s Langley Research Center. Male engineers assigned her team to perform calculations that enabled the Apollo spaceflight missions to take humans to the moon and return them safely to Earth.

Boosting wind farmers, global winds reverse decades of slowing and pick up speed

In a boon to wind farms, average daily wind speeds are picking up across much of the globe after about 30 years of gradual slowing. Research led by a team at Princeton University shows that wind speeds in northern mid-latitude regions have increased by roughly 7% since 2010.

Schmidt DataX Fund supports research projects that harness data science to speed up discovery

Nine data-driven research projects have won funding from Princeton University’s Schmidt DataX Fund, which aims to spread and deepen the use of artificial intelligence and machine learning across campus with the aim of accelerating discovery.

Achieving climate goals requires setting a price on carbon, experts say at Andlinger Center meeting

Cutting carbon emissions quickly requires a price on carbon, experts from industry, government and academia said at the annual meeting of the Andlinger Center for Energy and the Environment last week. A carbon fee would provide a dual benefit: offer direct incentives to cut emissions, and also create a new market for firms that can monetize carbon dioxide as a resource by transforming the gas into products and fuels.

President Eisgruber honored as innovation leader in New Jersey

Princeton President Christopher L. Eisgruber was recognized as the 2019 Educator of the Year by the Research and Development Council of New Jersey at the council’s 40th annual Thomas Alva Edison Patent Awards. Eisgruber was honored for his leadership of the University’s efforts to connect research to real-world problems and solutions.

How to make better biofuels? Convince yeast it’s not starving

Yeast already helps make bread and beer and cranks out the biofuel ethanol, but scientists believe it can be used to create an even more efficient fuel called isobutanol. Normally, yeast only creates a tiny amount of isobutanol. Now researchers at Princeton University have discovered a genetic switch that significantly ramps up production.