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Last February, Prof. Sharon Gannot gave a keynote lecture at the LVA-ICA conference held in France. Gannot, 52, who specializes in speech signal processing, referred in his lecture to the problem of speaker localization in reverberant rooms. "Usually, when a person speaks in a room or a closed space, we hear it both directly and as a returning echo from objects in the room. This phenomenon, called reverberation, affects the ability to recognize the location of the speaker, because the voice signal actually comes from many places at the same time. This is a classic problem in signal processing, and it is relevant when you want to pinpoint the exact location of speakers - for example, when you want to automatically turn a camera on to a lecturer speaking on stage, or to a speaker in a conference room."
Despite remarkable technological advances, cures for diseases and other developments, science has yet to find a way to quantify and qualify odors. Animals have already gotten the hang of it. Ants build roads, dogs can track people, drugs and other substances, parrots can identify fellow parrots, all based on their sense of smell. Dr. Rafi Haddad, who joined BIU’s Gonda (Goldschmied) Multidisciplinary Brain Research Center following a post-doc stint at Harvard, is working on revolutionizing our ability to measures smells, as head of BIU’s Neural Circuits, Neural Coding, Neural Computations and Olfaction lab.