News

Mendel Rosenblum wins Inaugural ACM Thacker Breakthrough in Computing Award

CS alumnus Mendel Rosenblum (MS '89/PhD '92) has been honored with the inaugural ACM Charles P. “Chuck” Thacker Breakthrough in Computing Award.  Rosenblum, who is currently a professor at Stanford, is being recognized "for reinventing the virtual machine for the modern era and thereby revolutionizing datacenters and enabling modern cloud computing."   He is a co-founder of VMware,  where helped design and build virtualization technology for commodity computing platforms.  The Breakthrough in Computing Award "recognizes individuals or groups who have made surprising, disruptive, or leapfrog contributions to computing ideas or technologies." Rosenblum will formally receive the award at ACM’s annual Awards Banquet in June.

ECE Distinguished Alumni

Professor Constance Chang-Hasnain wins UC Davis ECE Distinguished Alumni Award

The Electrical and Computer Engineering department (ECE) at UC Davis has awarded Prof. Constance Chang-Hasnain with the ECE Distinguished Alumni Award. The award recognizes outstanding alumni “whose professional and personal achievements bring special honor to the department.” In 2018, in addition to being elected as the Vice-President of Optical Society of America, Prof. “Connie” Chang-Hasnain was also inducted as a member of the National Academy of Engineering, a fellow of the National Academy of Inventors (NAI) and was a recipient of the prestigious Okawa Prize, “for pioneering and outstanding research of VCSEL photonics through the development of their novel functions for optical communications and optical sensing.”

2019 American Academy of Arts and Sciences Member
Professor Claire Tomlin

Claire Tomlin elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences

Professor Claire Tomlin (Ph.D. ‘98) has been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. The academy is one of the oldest learned societies in the United States and serves the nation as a champion of scholarship, civil dialogue and useful knowledge. Members are nominated and elected by peers, and membership has been considered a high honor of scholarly and societal merit ever since the academy was founded in 1780. Professor Tomlin was also inducted into the National Academy of Engineering (NAE) earlier this year, “For contributions to design tools for safety-focused control of cyberphysical systems.” In 2017, she won the IEEE Transportation Technologies Award.

Nolan Pokpongkiat wins third place David L. Kirp Prize

Third-year Computer Science undergraduate Nolan Pokpongkiat is the third place winner of the KIDS FIRST: David L. Kirp Prize, funded by the U.C. Berkeley Institute for the Study of Societal Issues.  The prize recognizes "students who have developed innovative strategies to increase opportunities for children and youth, as well as students who have demonstrated a commitment to improving the future of children and youth."  Pokpongkiat co-founded Helix, a non-profit organization with the goal of diversifying the healthcare field by empowering young people to pursue futures in medicine. As Managing Director, Nolan brought together a team to design a month-long summer program where high school students spend a week living at UC Berkeley training in basic clinical skills, getting CPR-certified, and learning about possible healthcare careers. Then, through partnerships with UCSF Health, John Muir Health, and Kaiser Permanente, along with a network of over 160 medical professionals, students rotate through shadowing placements in the hospital, on the ambulance, and in community clinics for the remainder of the month.

EECS department mourns the loss of Jean Paul Jacob and Elwyn Berlekamp

The EECS department lost two beloved faculty emeriti this month:  Jean Paul Jacob on April 7 and Elwyn Berlekamp on April 9.  Jacob was born in Brazil and spent a number of years working in industry before attending Berkeley (MS '65/PhD '66, advisor: Elijah Polak).  He was a world expert on Informatics and had a career at IBM that spanned over 40 years.  He returned to Berkeley as Faculty-in-Residence in 1971 where he actively promoted diversity initiatives and helped found the Center for Information Technology Research in the Interest of Society (CITRIS) in 2001.  Jacob won the EE Distinguished Alumni award in 1992.  Berlekamp was known for his work in coding theory and was one of the founders of combinatorial game theory.  He co-invented  the Berlekamp-Welch algorithm (which finds the shortest linear feedback shift register for a given binary output sequence) and the Berlekamp-Massey algorithm (which is used to implement Reed–Solomon error correction).  He bought out the controlling interest in Axcom Trading Advisors in 1989 and vastly increased the returns after rewriting the trading algorithms: returns to all investors in 1990 exceeded 55%, net of all trading costs and performance fees. He sold his interest in Axcom in December 1990.

Professor Alberto Sangiovanni-Vincentelli

Alberto Sangiovanni-Vincentelli wins Physical Design Lifetime Achievement Award

Professor Alberto Sangiovanni-Vincentelli has been awarded the 2019 International Symposium on Physical Design Lifetime Achievement Award. The ISPD Lifetime Achievement Award is the highest distinction in the field of physical design automation and is given to individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the field over multiple decades. The purpose of the award is to recognize lifetime achievements and contributions in terms of research work, education, and professional service. Previous recipients of this award include former EECS Chair and COE Dean, Ernest S. Kuh.  

Largest, fastest array of microscopic ‘traffic cops’ for optical communications

Prof. Ming Wu, post-doc Kyungmok Kwon, and grad students Johannes Henriksson and Jianheng Luo (along with co-lead author Tae Joon Seok of the Gwangju Institute) have built a new photonic switch that can control the direction of light passing through optical fibers faster and more efficiently than ever.  The photonic switch is built with more than 50,000 microscopic “light switches” etched into a silicon wafer. Each light switch directs one of 240 tiny beams of light to either make a right turn when the switch is on, or to pass straight through when the switch is off. This optical “traffic cop” could one day revolutionize how information travels through data centers and high-performance supercomputers that are used for artificial intelligence and other data-intensive applications.

EECS department honored with NCWIT Transformation (NEXT) Award for increasing women’s participation in computing

The L&S CS Major in the EECS Department has won the second place 2019 NCWIT Extension Services Transformation (NEXT) Award for Excellence in Promoting Women in Undergraduate Computing.  The team includes Director of Undergraduate Instruction Christopher Hunn, Director of Diversity Audrey Sillers, and CS Scholars Program Associate Director Charlene Hughes. The award comes with a prize of $50K to be used for diversity efforts.  NEXT awards are given to ES client organizations (department, departments, or college) that demonstrate a strong commitment to and proven results in recruiting and retaining women into undergraduate computing programs.  Between 2013 and spring 2018, the number of female Berkeley CS majors grew from 103 to 452. L&S CS produces more female CS graduates than all but three other universities in the nation, and the L&S CS major ranks 15th in the nation in terms of proportion of women in the major.  The award will be presented at the NCWIT Summit in May.

Two papers selected as 2018 IEEE Micro Top Picks

Two papers by EECS faculty have been named 2018 IEEE Micro Top Picks by the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Special Interest Group on Computer Architecture (SIGARCH).  The papers were "A Hardware Accelerator for Tracing Garbage Collection," co-authored by Profs. Krste Asanović and John Kubiatowicz (along with Martin Maas), and "FireSim: FPGA-Accelerated Cycle-Exact Scale-Out System Simulation in the Public Cloud," co-authored by Profs. Borivoje Nikolić, Randy Katz, Jonathan Bachrach, and Krste Asanović (along with Karandikar, Mao, Kim, Biancolin, Amid, Lee, Pemberton, Amaro, Schmidt, Chopra, Huang and Kovacs).  Top Picks represent "the most significant research papers in computer architecture based on novelty and potential for long-term impact."  The papers will be published in IEEE Micro's annual “Top Picks from the Computer Architecture Conferences” issue in May/June 2019.

4 EECS faculty and 3 alumni to participate in Fields Institute symposium celebrating work of Stephen Cook

CS Prof. Shafi Goldwasser, CS Profs. Emeriti Richard Karp,  Manuel Blum and Christos Papadimitriou, and alumni Michael Sipser (2016 CS Distinguished Alumnus, PhD '80, advisor: Manuel Blum), Scott Aaronson (CS PhD '04, advisor: Umesh Vazirani), and James Cook (CS PhD '14, advisor: Satish Rao) will all be speaking at The Fields Institute for Research in Mathematical Sciences Symposium on 50 Years of Complexity Theory: A Celebration of the Work of Stephen Cook.  The symposium, which will be held May 6-9, 2019 in Toronto, Canada, celebrates 50 years of NP-Completeness and the outstanding achievements of Stephen Cook and his remarkable influence on the field of computing.