AI Student Ambassador Carlos Paradis: Applying AI Concepts to Cybersecurity and Environmental Issues

Published: 12/19/2018  

Last Updated: 12/18/2018

Intel® Student Ambassador Carlos Paradis is one of those people that can easily take an issue and see how to apply AI to analyze and then resolve the problem. His studies and research have taken his work in a variety of directions which only seem to enhance his drive to further his skills and do more to help improve the quality of life for people. Carlos took time out of his busy schedule to let us know a bit more about him and the work he is doing. 

Carlos standing in front of the NASA wind tunnel

Tell us about your background. 
While studying computer science at Federal University of Bahia in Salvador, Brazil, I was selected to participate in the pilot for a new program called Ciência sem Fronteiras (Science Without Borders). My country created this international exchange program for undergraduate students in STEM-related majors to stimulate research and innovation in scientific projects abroad. Being a part of the first group in the program and having never lived outside of my hometown, felt like I was being sent to the moon on an expedition. It was very exciting. 

I originally started my exchange at Stevens Institute of Technology in New Jersey, where I incidentally fulfilled the credit requirements as an undergraduate to later earn a Master’s in software engineering. Since I was self-funded through the exchange program I was also able to arrange for an internship at NASA Ames Research Center that year. This exchange program also served as the perfect opportunity to move forward in research with a professor at the University of Hawaii at Manoa who I met at an international conference on open source software in Brazil several years ago, and is now my PhD advisor. This experience has forever changed how I see technology and computer science as a whole. 

Newspaper clipping of Carlos and fellow classmates selected for Science without Borders project

What projects are you working on now?
My dissertation work focuses on proactively identifying cybersecurity and safety concepts in the wild (e.g. mailing lists and Twitter*), and organization reports (e.g. CERT, CVE*, ASRS) and mapping emerging concepts to specific code patterns in complex software projects. By researching how cybersecurity topics are disclosed in social media, and how their textual concepts relate to actual security and safety breaches in code to enable early action by stakeholders. I was able to present some of my work at the Intel booth at the Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems (NeurIPS) as well as the Intel® AI DevJam, and also recently published in the International Conference on Machine Learning and Applications (ICMLA 2018). More recently, I have been researching applications of my work on unmanned drones through my internship as a contractor for Stinger Ghaffarian Technologies (SGT) working at NASA Ames Research Center. 

As a side project, I have also been working with my colleagues in the Environmental Research and Design Laboratory (ERDL) of my university on a small air station. We’re using a Raspberry Pi* Air and Intel® Movidius™ Neural Compute Stick (NCS) to observe air quality and volcano smoke in Hawaii, as well as offer locals “deep” casts of poor air quality based on instant weather conditions. From pollen to volcano smoke, we have our share of particles that can trigger asthma and other complications here, and it would be useful being able to have an inexpensive local indicator of how bad it is in your area.

Carlos with the Intel Software robots at NeurIPS in Montreal

Tell us about a technology challenge you’ve had to overcome in a project. 
Without exception, every project I worked on with machine learning required teamwork to “divide and conquer” the problem at hand. From circuits to weather, knitting bits of information in a functional product has always been both a challenge and a passion. The strongpoint that I bring to the team is my resourcefulness. 

Carlos giving a presentation

What impact has the Student Ambassador Program had on you? 
While most of my research has focused on the software end, Intel has given me a much sought-after understanding of various types of new and upcoming hardware that I can implement to evolve my ideas into reality.  

Carlos with NeurIPS poster

How can Intel help students like you succeed?
Being an Intel Student Ambassador is empowering because there is a never-ending stream of new opportunities to challenge you to review and improve your research work. The student ambassador program has been invaluable to me in enabling to present early work of my dissertation at various events sponsored by Intel. 

Join the Intel® Student Ambassador Program for AI
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