February Fourier Talks 2015

Richard Baraniuk

Rice University


Compressive Nonsensing


Sensing and imaging systems are under increasing pressure to accommodate ever larger and higher-dimensional data sets; ever faster capture, sampling, and processing rates; ever lower power consumption; communication over ever more difficult channels; and radically new sensing modalities. Since its discovery in 2004, compressive sensing (CS) has stimulated a re-thinking of sensor and signal processing system design. In CS, analog signals are digitized and processed not via uniform sampling but via measurements using more general, even random, test functions. In contrast with conventional wisdom, the new theory asserts that one can combine "sub-Nyquist-rate sampling" with large-scale optimization for efficient and accurate signal acquisition when the signal has a sparse structure. Despite the large and rapidly growing literature on CS, surprisingly little work has gone into quantifying its tradeoffs. In this talk, armed with the adage “if all this sounds too good to be true, it probably is” we will review the progress in the field over the last 11 years, with a special emphasis on the pros and cons of the technique.


Richard G. Baraniuk is the Victor E. Cameron Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Rice University. His research interests lie in new theory, algorithms, and hardware for sensing, signal processing, and machine learning. He is a Fellow of the IEEE and AAAS and has received national young investigator awards from the US NSF and ONR, the Rosenbaum Fellowship from the Isaac Newton Institute of Cambridge University, the ECE Young Alumni Achievement Award from the University of Illinois, and the Wavelet Pioneer and Compressive Sampling Pioneer Awards from SPIE. His work on the Rice single-pixel compressive camera has been widely reported in the popular press and was selected by MIT Technology Review as a TR10 Top 10 Emerging Technology. For his teaching and education projects, including Connexions (cnx.org) and OpenStax College (openstaxcollege.org), he has received the IEEE James H. Mulligan, Jr. Medal for Education, the C. Holmes MacDonald National Outstanding Teaching Award from Eta Kappa Nu, Tech Museum of Innovation Laureate Award, the Internet Pioneer Award from the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard Law School, the World Technology Award for Education, the IEEE-SPS Education Award, and the WISE Education Award.

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