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Six UC Berkeley professors among 50 top women in science, 50 scientific visionaries chosen by national science magazines
15 November 2002

By Robert Sanders, Media Relations

Berkeley - Two national science magazines recently picked six University of California, Berkeley, faculty for their top-50 lists of leaders in science and technology.

In the November 2002 issue, Discover Magazine named three UC Berkeley scientists to its list of the 50 most important women in science. These "extraordinary women" included Ruzena Bajcsy, director of UC Berkeley's Center for Information Technology Research in the Interest of Society (CITRIS) and professor of electrical engineering and computer science; Margaret Conkey, professor of anthropology and director of the Archaeological Research Facility at UC Berkeley; and nuclear chemist Darleane Hoffman, professor in the graduate school and a researcher at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

The December issue of Scientific American debuted the annual "Scientific American 50," a list of individuals and organizations whose accomplishments demonstrate a "clear, progressive view of the technological future." That list included John Clarke, professor of physics; Alexander Pines, professor of chemistry; and John Kubiatowicz, assistant professor of computer science.

Clarke and Pines also are members of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory's Materials Sciences Division.

Bajcsy was honored by Discover for her work on robots that sense and respond to their environment, and for her current position heading "an innovative institute where researchers develop smart low-power sensors that both compute and communicate."

Conkey is an expert on prehistoric art who, according to the magazine, "encourages anthropologists to reinterpret ancient images and objects" from a female perspective. She heads a team that "surveys the landscape in southern France, searching for traces of the day-to-day lives of the cave painters."

Since the early 1950s, Hoffman has been a pioneer in the nuclear chemistry of the transuranic elements - elements heavier than uranium. She and her colleagues discovered the first plutonium 244 in nature, and she continues to lead a team that explores the mysterious properties of the very heaviest, though short-lived, elements.

Clarke and Pines were jointly chosen by Scientific American editors for their "innovations in magnetic resonance imaging with weak magnetic fields." Their technology combines superconducting quantum interference devices (SQUIDs) with modern developments in nuclear magnetic resonance to explore the possibility for mobile diagnostic scanning devices in materials and biomedicine, without the need for huge superconducting magnets.

Kubiatowicz was recognized as "chief architect of the innovative OceanStore system, which could lead to an Internet scale grid computing system linking processing and storage capabilities of millions of computers." He also is interested in various speculative approaches for constructing computer systems, including quantum computing, reconfigurable computing and biological computing.