@UCSD: An Alumni Publication

An Alumni Publication   Archive vol1no3 Contact
Up Front: Letters to and from the editor
Campus Currents: UCSD Stories
Shelf Life: Books
Cliff Notes: Student life and sports
Class Notes: Alumni profiles
Campaign Update: Imagine the Future
Looking Back: Thoughts on UCSD
Credits: Staff and Contributors

Diego Rock
Autism: The Epidemic
It's the End of the      World As We Know It
Bear Essentials

Making Waves

Angel of Death Online
Bye-Bye Camp      Matthews
Da Vinci Part Deux
Hot Pursuit
Venice and Muddy      Waters
Eel City





Class Notes May 2004: Volume 1, Number 2


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Have you founded a company or worked at a company started by a UCSD alum? We want to know - for the stories behind these companies, for networking, for mentoring, and just for war stories about successes and failures. Drop us a note at startups@ucsd.edu so we can build a database of activity.


Support Group
Every great business or product started with an even greater idea. Develop your ideas at UCSD Triton Enterprise Network (UCSD TEN) meetings in the Bay Area. Founded by
entrepreneurial-minded UCSD alumni, this group is dedicated to promoting the growth and success of alumni professionals and entrepreneurs by connecting the UCSD community, ideas, technology and people. Recent grads to seasoned and highly successful entrepreneurs and business professionals attend quarterly events.
UCSD TEN is sponsored by the UCSD Alumni Association, Rady School of Management and VentureForth.

To learn more about UCSD TEN in the Bay Area, visit www.ucsdten.org. Interested in starting a group for entrepreneurs in your region? Contact our Alumni Chapter and Groups Manager at mwkaplan@ucsd.edu for
more information.



Chris Parrish, M.A.’72, Ph.D. ’74.
Chris Parrish has an iPod. But you might be surprised at his choice of songs. Bird songs. He has stored more than 20,000 of them. Parrish’s passion for birds started when he was 11, and started working on his Boy Scout merit badges in a Los Angeles suburb. It took him six months of climbing trees and peering through his grandmother’s old double-magnification opera glasses to identify the 40 bird species required for the badge. It was the beginning of a passion that has shaped much of his life. MORE

Ricardo Chavira, M.F.A. ’00
As a desperate husband of a Desperate Housewife, Ricardo Chavira finds himself enduring the slings and arrows of outrageous plotlines on Sunday nights at 10/9 p.m. central. Chavira plays Carlos Solis, the jerky husband of Gabrielle Solis (Eva Longoria) on ABC television’s saucy runaway hit Desperate Housewives. And he’s enjoying the ride. MORE

Joan L. Byer, '78
Juvenile delinquency is one of the major problems that Family Court Judge Joan L. Byer, ’78, confronts daily in her Louisville, Kentucky courtroom. And 95 percent of juvenile delinquents have had a truancy problem. MORE


Autism is reaching epidemic proportions. Currently, the only treatment can cost families between $40,000 and $100,000 a year, and there can be a two-year waiting list. Christina Whalen, B.A. ’95, M.A. ’96, Ph.D. ’01, saw something wrong with this picture. MORE

Hello, Goodbye
San Diego software company NetSift celebrated its first birthday with quite a present—$30 million in cash and options—when technology giant Cisco Systems bought the company in June. NetSift, was founded by Computer Science and Engineering professor George Varghese and Sumeet Singh, ’02, in June 2004. With the assistance of the Jacobs School’s William J. von Liebig Center for Entrepreneurism and Technology Advancement, they were able to get financing from Enterprise Partners Venture Capital.

The von Liebig Center works with UCSD faculty and research staff to foster innovation and accelerate commercialization of new ideas. “The Center helped us get the initial pitch together,” says Varghese. “Venture capital firms tell you that the technology is good, but what you really need is a business plan.”

“The success of NetSift helps validate the seed-stage investing model that we have adopted to help faculty turn their innovative ideas into innovative products and companies,” says Paul Kedrosky of the von Liebig Center. “The traditional criticism of seed-stage investing is that it usually takes eight years and $70 million to take a company from startup to exit. In NetSift’s case, that process took barely a year.”

The ink was scarcely dry on the stationary before they were approached by Cisco. NetSift’s unique systems, developed from their research at UCSD, will be incorporated into Cisco’s products.

NetSift’s software will protect customers from large-scale worm and virus attacks and will help accelerate the integration of high-speed packet processing capabilities into future core Cisco platforms. Most of the company’s 15 employees will be absorbed into Cisco’s Internet Systems Business Unit, while several remain in San Diego. Varghese will extend his leave of absence from the University to work at the San Jose facility. Part of the deal with Cisco included his remaining with the company for another year.


Wow! Photos
Describing his new book Phantograms From Nature, Western USA, Barry Rothstein, ’75, says, “It’s a hobby gone mad.” The innovative book employs a technique of 3D photography called phantograms, which are viewed from a 45 degree angle rather than straight on.

The book features scenes from nature—autumn leaves, driftwood, cactus—mostly taken in parks near Rothstein’s home. But viewed through the 3D glasses included in the book, these everyday scenes lift from the page in amazing detail. As Rothstein says, there is a definite “wow factor.”

His one-man company, 3dDigitalphoto.com, was born out of his hobby. The website includes several galleries of photographs, as well as information on creating 3D images. Rothstein predicts this style of photography could even find application in school textbooks. “Just think, you could really examine a dandelion,” he says. “Who takes the time to do that?” Rothstein’s next foray is into the world of children’s books. He is already developing some ideas that incorporate his unique photographic style.

This isn’t Rothstein’s first entrepreneurial venture. In 1975 he set up a bagel cart that traveled from Muir to Revelle selling a bagel and cream cheese for just 25 cents.