Issue No. 11 - November (2011 vol. 44)
DOI Bookmark: http://doi.ieeecomputersociety.org/10.1109/MC.2011.333
Chuck Seitz Wins Cray Award
Charles L. (Chuck) Seitz is an architect and designer of innovative computing and communication systems, many of which exploit asynchrony and concurrency to achieve performance at the limits of available technology. Known for creating new disciplines of digital design, Seitz will receive the IEEE Computer Society's Seymour Cray Award in November at the annual SC conference in Seattle. His award citation reads "For innovations in high-performance message passing architectures and networks."
Seymour Cray Award
Established in 1997, the Seymour Cray Award recognizes innovative contributions to high-performance computing systems that best exemplify the creative spirit demonstrated by supercomputer pioneer Seymour Cray. Winners receive a crystal me-mento, an illuminated certificate, and a $10,000 honorarium.
Contributions to Computing
Seitz become fascinated with digital design during the 1960s at MIT, where he earned a BS, MS, and PhD in electrical engineering. While a graduate student, he taught courses in switching and automata theory, developed MIT's digital-system project-laboratory course, and received the MIT Goodwin Medal "for conspicuously effective teaching." Seitz's PhD thesis on asynchronous logic helped to expose and explain the fundamental problems of mutual exclusion and of synchronizing asynchronous signals to a free-running clock.
Seitz later became an assistant professor of computer science at the University of Utah and worked at the Evans & Sutherland Computer Corporation, designing high-performance graphics engines. He then moved to California to perform research for Burroughs on aperture filtering digital-video techniques for character and geometric display.
In 1977, Seitz joined the computer science faculty at Caltech, where his research and teaching focused on VLSI design and concurrent computing. Under DARPA sponsorship, Seitz and his students developed the first multicomputer, the Cosmic Cube; devised the key programming and packet-switching techniques for the second-generation multicomputers; and transferred these technologies to industry. The Intel Paragon, ASCI Red, and Cray T3D/E employ message-passing techniques licensed from his Caltech patents.
Seitz's 1992 election to the National Academy of Engineering carried the citation "for pioneering contributions to the design of asynchronous and concurrent computing systems."
Computer Society Awards
The IEEE Computer Society recognizes outstanding work by computer professionals who advance the field through exceptional technical achievement and service to the profession and to society.
In the technical area, awards recognize pioneering and significant contributions to the field of computer science and engineering. Service awards honor both volunteers and staff for well-defined and highly valued contributions to the Society. In most cases there are no eligibility restrictions on the nominee or nominator.
Nomination forms are available via the Society's website at www.computer.org/awards.
Cleve Moler Wins Fernbach Award
Cleve Moler, founder, chairman and chief scientist of MathWorks, was recently honored with the IEEE Computer Society Sidney Fernbach Award for high-performance computing.
Moler was a professor of mathematics and computer science for almost 20 years at the University of Michigan, Stanford University, and the University of New Mexico. At New Mexico, he was a professor in the mathematics department in the late 1970s and then chair of the computer science department in the early 1980s. During this time, he developed several packages of mathematical software for computational science and engineering that eventually formed the basis for MATLAB, a high-level technical computing environment.
In 1984, Moler and Jack Little founded MathWorks to commercialize and continue the development of MATLAB.
Before joining MathWorks full time in 1989, Moler spent five years with two computer hardware manufacturers, Intel Hypercube and Ardent Computer. At MathWorks, Moler has served as chief scientist, overseeing the mathematical aspects of the company's products. Moler is the one of the authors of the LINPACK and EISPACK scientific subroutine libraries, as well as author or coauthor of five textbooks on numerical analysis and computational science. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and a past president of the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics. Today, Moler works from his home office in Santa Fe, New Mexico, writing books, articles, and MATLAB programs.
The IEEE Computer Society Sidney Fernbach Award was established in 1992 in memory of one of the pioneers in the development and application of high-performance computers to the solution of large computational problems. Winners receive a certificate and $2,000 honorarium in recognition of outstanding contributions in the application of high-performance computers using innovative approaches.
Susan Graham Receives Kennedy Award
Susan L. Graham, a professor of computer science at the University of California, Berkeley, was recently honored with the IEEE Computer Society's 2011 Ken Kennedy Award winner for her contributions to computer programming tools that have significantly advanced software development. Her award citation reads, "For foundational compilation algorithms and programming tools; research and discipline leadership; and exceptional mentoring."
Research and Projects
Graham's research covers human-computer interaction, programming systems, and high-performance computing. Her work has led to the development of interactive tools that enhance programmer productivity as well as new implementation methods for programming languages that improve software performance.
As a participant in the Berkeley Unix project, Graham and her students built the Berkeley Pascal system and the widely used gprof program profiling tool. Her most recent projects include Harmonia, a language-based framework for interactive software development, and Titanium, a Java-based parallel programming language, compiler, and runtime system that supports high performance scientific computing on large-scale multiprocessors.
Graham currently serves as vice-chair of the Council of the Computing Community Consortium, which is sponsored by the National Science Foundation.
Ken Kennedy Award
The Kennedy Award was estab-lished in 2009 to recognize substantial contributions to programmability and productivity in computing as well as significant community service and mentoring activities. The award was named for high-performance computing expert Ken Kennedy, founder of Rice University's computer science program. Previous recipients of the Kennedy Award include David Kuck of the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign and Francine Berman of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Winners receive a $5,000 honorarium.