ISIS anniversary event celebrates 10th anniversary

Curious about the impact that the digital revolution is having on the battlefield?  Maybe you would like to meet Betty, the computer character that middle school students are asked to teach about various science subjects, a process that teaches them how to learn? Or perhaps you would be interested in discovering how the latest software can improve the way that hospitals manage infectious diseases?

If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, consider visiting Vanderbilt on Friday, September 19, for a symposium celebrating the tenth anniversary of the Institute for Software Integrated Systems (ISIS). The meeting is being held in Ballroom C in the Student Life Center on the Vanderbilt campus. It begins at 9 a.m. and ends at 4:30 p.m.  The program and additional information are available on the ISIS website at

ISIS was established in 1998 in the School of Engineering. During the past decade, the center has become a nationally and internationally recognized for its impact on the science and technology of integrating computers with physical systems. It employs more than 100 researchers and students who work on joint projects with leading academic and industrial research institutions across the United States and the world.

One of the highlights of the meeting will be a series of short talks in the morning that highlight areas where ISIS researchers are making a difference. These include:

  • ISIS is playing an important role in the U.S. Army’s Future Combat Systems program, one of the largest software projects in history. Specifically, it has been developing a system for rapidly setting up secure and reliable systems for command, control, communications, intelligence and reconnaissance for battlefields of the future. A related project is development of a sensor network worn by individual soldiers that can identify the location of snipers in urban environments.
  • An animated computer program created by ISIS is being used in Nashville public school classrooms to teach science to middle school students. Fifth- and sixth-grade students teach a cartoon character named Betty about science topics. Then they test her to see if she has learned her lesson. Not only do they learn about science in this fashion, they are also taught how to learn.
  • ISIS technology is being used to improve the management of sepsis in acute care settings at Vanderbilt Medical Center. This part of a larger effort to standardize the care of patients with complex problems in hospital settings, which is a major challenge for physicians, nurses and other medical professionals.

The afternoon session will include technical talks on several of the research involved and an “undergraduate open house” designed for students who might be interested in graduate studies at the center.