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  1. The topic of robustness is experiencing a resurgence of interest in the statistical and machine learning communities. In particular, robust algorithms making use of the so-called median of means estimator were shown to satisfy strong performance guarantees for many problems, including estimation of the mean, covariance structure as well as linear regression. In this work, we propose an extension of the median of means principle to the Bayesian framework, leading to the notion of the robust posterior distribution. In particular, we (a) quantify robustness of this posterior to outliers, (b) show that it satisfies a version of the Bernstein-von Mises theorem that connects Bayesian credible sets to the traditional confidence intervals, and (c) demonstrate that our approach performs well in applications. 
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  2. null (Ed.)
    The disastrous vulnerabilities in smart contracts sharply remind us of our ignorance: we do not know how to write code that is secure in composition with malicious code. Information flow control has long been proposed as a way to achieve compositional security, offering strong guarantees even when combining software from different trust domains. Unfortunately, this appealing story breaks down in the presence of reentrancy attacks. We formalize a general definition of reentrancy and introduce a security condition that allows software modules like smart contracts to protect their key invariants while retaining the expressive power of safe forms of reentrancy. We present a security type system that provably enforces secure information flow; in conjunction with run-time mechanisms, it enforces secure reentrancy even in the presence of unknown code; and it helps locate and correct recent high-profile vulnerabilities. 
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  3. In metals, orbital motions of conduction electrons on the Fermi surface are quantized in magnetic fields, which is manifested by quantum oscillations in electrical resistivity. This Landau quantization is generally absent in insulators. Here, we report a notable exception in an insulator—ytterbium dodecaboride (YbB12). The resistivity of YbB12, which is of a much larger magnitude than the resistivity in metals, exhibits distinct quantum oscillations. These unconventional oscillations arise from the insulating bulk, even though the temperature dependence of the oscillation amplitude follows the conventional Fermi liquid theory of metals with a large effective mass. Quantum oscillations in the magnetic torque are also observed, albeit with a lighter effective mass.

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