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Computer Society Connection

Pages: pp. 71-73

Miura Wins Cray Award

Kenichi Miura, a professor at Japan's National Institute of Informatics, recently received the IEEE Computer Society's prestigious 2009 Seymour Cray Computer Science and Engineering Award during the SC09 conference in Portland, Oregon.

Miura's citation reads. "For leadership in developing groundbreaking vector supercomputing hardware and software."

Key Contributions

In 1983, Miura made seminal contributions to the Fujitsu VP-100/200 vector processing system, a major milestone in the history of supercomputer design. The supercomputer design showed how effective vectorizing compilers could exploit architectural features. Miura was the first to vectorize Monte Carlo radiation transport using the technique.

"The IEEE Computer Society is honored to recognize Dr. Miura's ingenuity in developing supercomputer software and hardware that advanced the state of the art in technical computing," said Susan K. (Kathy) Land, CSDP, Computer Society president for 2009.


Figure    Kenichi Miura is a visiting researcher on the Next-Generation Supercomputer project at RIKEN.

Daniel Reed, chair of the Cray Award selection committee, wrote that "Dr. Miura was one of the key leaders of the Japanese supercomputing designs, which were the only peers of the pioneering designs created by Seymour Cray."

Miura received a BS in physics from the University of Tokyo and an MSEE and a PhD in computer science from the University of Illinois. He has authored many technical publications and was the 2008 recipient of the SC Cornerstone Award. Miura is also a member of the Engineering Academy of Japan.

Seymour Cray Award

Established in 1998, the Seymour Cray Award is given each year to individuals whose innovative contributions to high-performance computing systems best exemplify the creative spirit demonstrated by the late Seymour Cray. The award includes a crystal model, certificate, and $10,000 honorarium.

Convey Computer cofounder Steven Wallach was the winner of the 2008 Seymour Cray award. Other previous recipients of the Seymour Cray Award include John Cocke, Glen Culler, Monty Denneau, John L. Hennessy, and Burton J. Smith.

Car and Parrinello Named 2009 Fernbach Winners

Roberto Car and Michele Parrinello, developers of the Car-Parrinello molecular dynamics approach, recently received the 2009 IEEE Computer Society Sidney Fernbach Award.

CPMD has become the leading code used in high-performance computing. The algorithm, a breakthrough in computer simulation, is at the root of other combined quantum/classical simulations. CPMD unifies two separate scientific communities—classical computer simulations and electronic structure calculations.

Car and Parrinello's citation reads, "For leadership in creating the modern theoretical and practical foundations for modeling the chemistry and physics of materials. The software resulting from this work is one of the enabling tools for materials science modeling."

"The Fernbach Award recognizes the leadership of doctors Car and Parrinello in creating the modern theoretical and practical foundations for materials modeling," said IEEE Computer Society President Susan K. (Kathy) Land, CSDP.

"The CPMD approach is a one of the key enablers of complex materials modeling and a workhorse of computational science," said Fernbach Award selection committee chair Daniel Reed.

Roberto Car

Roberto Car is the Ralph W. Dornte Professor of Chemistry at Princeton University. He is a Fellow of the Princeton Center for Theoretical Science. He received a PhD in physics from the Milan Institute of Technology. Car is a Fellow of the American Physical Society and of the UK's Royal Society of Chemistry, and was recently honored with the 2009 Dirac Medal from the International Centre for Theoretical Physics. He received a Humboldt Foundation research award in 2008.

Car's research focuses on the physical and chemical properties of matter, in both condensed and molecular phases, using computational methods based on microscopic quantum theory.


Figure    Roberto Car heads the CAR Group at Princeton University.


Figure    Michele Parrinello holds the Raman Prize for Computational Physics from the American Physical Society.

Michele Parrinello

Michele Parrinello, a professor of computational science at ETH Zurich, served as director of the Swiss Center for Scientific Computing. Prior to joining ETH, he was director of the Max Planck Institute for Solid State Research in Stuttgart, Germany, a manager at IBM Research in Zurich, and a professor at the International School for Advanced Studies in Trieste, Italy.

Parrinello also received the 2009 Dirac Medal from the International Centre for Theoretical Physics. The Italian Physical Society presented him with its Somaini physics prize in 2006. He is a member of the UK's Royal Society, Italy's Accademia dei Lincei, Germany's Max Planck Institute, and the American Physical Society.

Parrinello's scientific interests include the study of complex chemical reactions, hydrogen-bonded systems, catalysis, materials science, and large-scale motion in proteins.

Society Launches New Student Design Competition

The IEEE Computer Society is launching a new design competition for undergraduates. Teams of three to five undergraduates will be invited to design a CPU simulator, a program used in many architecture courses to illustrate how computers work. Prizes total $10,000.

Focus on Excellence

The purpose of the competition is to promote excellence. The competition requires the skills of students who have taken a course in architecture and the experience of programmers and software engineers who can turn a specification into a working program. The competition will last several months. Upon completion, teams will submit both a report on their methods and a working program for judging.

"This is an exciting competition because it cuts across traditional boundaries by combining architecture with program design and software engineering—just like real life," said Computer Society vice president Alan Clements, professor of computer science at the UK's University of Teesside. "All you have to do is to write a program. Well, that's not quite all. You have to write an excellent program using professional design techniques."

$10,000 in Prizes

The top 10 teams will be awarded certificates of achievement. These 10 teams will be free to participate in the final stage of the competition, when they will compete against each other for four prizes. Projects will be judged on originality of the architecture designed; the functionality, quality, and versatility of the simulator; and the use of software engineering in the simulator design. Prizes of $1,000 will be awarded to the winning team in each of these categories, and a $7,000 prize will be awarded to the overall winning team. No team will be judged an overall winner unless its use of software engineering in the design and creation of the simulator is judged to be of high quality.

For additional information, contact Alan Clements at, or visit

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