Long-Lost 17th-Century Poet Gets Digital Treatment

By Jeffrey Day

For a long time, analyzing a literary work consisted of creating a “definitive edition,” which might be supplanted a decade or two later. Or maybe never. English professor Frances Dolan is part of a project that offers a new approach for literary analysis, one better aligned with the high-speed information exchange possible today.

Hester Pulter’s poems were recently discovered in a university library. (University of Leeds Brotherton Collection)

Success Is Not Just How You Play Your Cards, But How You Play Your Opponents

  •  Poker-playing techniques can apply to strategies in many situations
  • Study can influence scientific approaches to negotiation
  • By Karen Nikos-Rose

    In high-stakes environments, success is not just about playing your cards right, but also playing your opponents right.

    Looking at how more than 35,000 individuals interacted when playing millions of poker hands online during a three-week period, a University of California, Davis, study published today reveals that game experts are an excellent source of insight into how people process strategic information in competitive settings.

    LASER Art/Science Series Reboots

    By Jeffrey Day

    A series at UC Davis that brings together art and science restarts with a new format, location, time and leadership. The Leonardo Art, Science, Evening Rendezvous (LASER) will be re-launched Nov. 10 at 6 p.m. in the Art Annex room 107.laser-logo

    Free and open to the pubic, LASER at UC Davis is being co-directed by Timothy Hyde, assistant professor, Department of Art and Art History, and Jiayi Young, assistant professor, Department of Design.

    Latest Caterpillar Poll: Woolly Bears Are Undecided

    With the third and final debate over, those voters who haven’t yet made up their minds will be focusing on their choice for President. But what do the woolly bear caterpillars of Bodega Bay have to say about the election?

    Caterpillar

    Woolly bear caterpillars are having a hard time picking the outcome of the 2016 Presidential election. (Eric Lo Presti/UC Davis)

    The caterpillars shot to fame a few months ago when UC Davis graduate student Eric Lo Presti pointed out in a blog post that cycles in the caterpillar population tracked with the fortunes of political parties in presidential election years. Going back as far as 1984, Democrats won the White House in years when the caterpillars were abundant in March, and Republicans when the caterpillars were less prolific.

    Chemwiki free textbook effort expands with $600,000 grant

    By Becky Oskin

    College students in the STEM fields could see sizable savings thanks to a $600,000 grant awarded to an open source textbook project developed at the University of California, Davis.

    The ChemWiki project recently received $600,000 from the National Science Foundation to support further expansion of its open source textbooks into fields including statistics, math, geology, physics, biology and solar energy.

    Digital course materials are steadily climbing in use in response to textbook cost concerns, according to an annual survey released in July by the National Association of College Stores. In August, the University of Maryland announced plans to completely eliminate print textbooks this academic year.

    Engineering student builds machines for battlebots

    Travis Smith has always been interested in building things. This summer, the UC Davis graduate student will be on national television building robots and then watching his creations stand up to spikes, chainsaws and flamethrowers as a team member in the sixth series of “Battlebots” on the ABC network.

    Travis Smith, a Ph.D. student in engineering, is taking part in the sixth season of the TV show "Battlebots."

    Travis Smith, a Ph.D. student in engineering, is taking part in the sixth season of the TV show “Battlebots.”

    In the show, teams build armed robots that fight it out in an arena full of hazards. Think FIRST Robotics, but with chainsaws.

    “Real Revolutionaries Carry a Banjo:” Jesse Drew on Pete Seeger

    Jesse Drew of the Cinema and Technocultural Studies program at UC Davis met legendary musician Pete Seeger several times, most recently during filming of his documentary, “Open Country.” Seeger died Jan. 27, and Prof. Drew just posted a remembrance, “Real Revolutionaries Carry a Banjo.”

    Seeger should be considered a founder of country music, Drew argues:

    Not folk music, mind you, as that has been around for some time. Coun­try music. Nashville, I believe, owes Pete a statue in the cen­ter of town.

    Read the whole article here.

    Seeger also recorded an intro for Davis community radio station KDRT:

    Alumn judges the Big Brains on TV

    UC Davis multi-alumna Christine Gulbranson is bringing her talents to a new challenge starting today, May 1: She is one of two regular judges on a new reality TV show, “Big Brain Theory: Pure Genius” which begins an eight-week run on the Discovery Channel tonight.

    Gulbranson said she hopes the show can help get young people excited about in careers in science, technology, engineering and math.

    “In my experience, it was when I was working in a physics lab, doing things, that a lightbulb clicked on and I realized, ‘I can do this,'” she said.

    Great new apps on the move: Mileage and music

    Jason Moore and Tai Stillwater, two researchers at the UC Davis Institute of Transportation Studies, have developed a neat little smartphone app that monitors fuel economy as you drive. They have already been awarded $2,000 in phase one of the White House Apps for Vehicles Challenge and are in the running for $34,000 in phase two. Vote for Drive5 here and help them to their goal!

    Rock to Renaissance musicologist wins UC Davis teaching prize

    The “History of Rock” class taught by Professor Christopher Reynolds of the music department was interrupted this morning by Chancellor Linda Katehi, bringing a cake styled like a Fender electric guitar. guitar-cake-lg

    Yes, Reynolds is the 2013 winner of the  UC Davis Prize for Undergraduate Teaching and Scholarly Achievement.

    Established in 1986, the $45,000 prize is believed to be the largest of its kind in the country and is funded through philanthropic gifts managed by the UC Davis Foundation. The winner is selected based on the nominations of other professors, research peers, representatives from the UC Davis Foundation Board of Trustees, and students.