Profile: Min Wu

Name: Min Wu

Title: Associate professor

Organization: University of Maryland, College Park

Age: 32

Industry: Education

Where to find her: www.ece.umd.edu/~minwu

30-second biography: Wu's research interests include information security and forensics, and multimedia signal processing and communications. She has published about 80 journal and conference papers and holds five U.S. patents on media security and communications. She has co-authored two books, Multimedia Data Hiding and Multimedia Fingerprinting Forensics for Traitor Tracing. Wu received bachelor's degrees in electrical engineering and in economics from Tsinghua University in Beijing, and a Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Princeton University. Since 2001, she has been on the faculty of the electrical and computer engineering department and the Institute of Advanced Computer Studies at the University of Maryland, College Park, where she is currently an associate professor. Wu has received numerous awards, including a CAREER award for faculty early-career development from the National Science Foundation, a George Corcoran Education Award from the University of Maryland, and a Young Investigator award from the U.S. Office of Naval Research.

Current project: "Along with my colleagues and research team at University of Maryland, we have developed a series of multimedia forensic technologies. These forensic studies can provide useful evidence to help answer a number of questions arising from law enforcement, intelligence operation, journalism and technology intellectual property protection. For example, did one company's new product infringe an existing patent by its competitor? How did a terrorist group make a propaganda video aired in the Middle East? Our new technologies of traitor-tracing forensics, device forensics and content forensics showcase the excitement of Sherlock Holmes in the 21st century."

Who in the technology industry most influenced your career? "My father, who is an electrical engineer by training and a research professor emeritus in IT areas at Chinese Academy of Sciences. He believes in me and has made me believe in myself, especially to excel as a female professional in engineering."

Most-critical technologies for IT this year: "The security and forensic technologies in the digital information world will be one of the most critical pieces of the puzzle in the IT industry in the coming years.'

The best thing about today's technology: "Every technology has its time: In the past decades, we have witnessed advances in communication and networking infrastructure, followed by the development of multimedia compression and coding standards, and then the demands of content search and retrieval."

The worst thing about today's technology: "This path of technological evolution has naturally led to an unsolved critical issue -- information assurance and forensics. The goal of multimedia forensics is to reconstruct what has happened to the content to discover who has done what, when and how."

Technology can... "Fundamentally change the ways we live and think."

What sets you apart? "My knowledge, skills and experiences at the intersection of several (conventionally separated) fields related to IT, my innovative and strong problem-solving skills, and my determination and pursuit of excellence."

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