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Distinguished Alumni

Allen Adham
B.S. 1990
Current: Blizzard Entertainment cofounder and founder of Tenfold Capital Management, Inc.,

Charles Alpert
Ph.D. 1996; advisor Andrew B. Kahng
Current: Manager of Design Productivity Group, IBM Austin Research Laboratory
Honors: IEEE Fellow 2005, three time winner of best paper award, design automation conference, two time winner of SRC Mahboob Khan Mentoring award.
Interests: Basketball, volleyball, chess, behavioral economics, Connect4 with my daughter.

Vladimir Braverman
Ph.D. 2011; Advisor Rafail Ostrovsky
Current: Assistant Professor, Johns Hopkins University

Deming Chen
Ph.D. 2005; advisor Jason Cong
Current: Assistant professor, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Honors: Achievement for Excellent Teamwork (Aplus Design Technologies 2001); Arnold O. Beckman Research Award (UIUC 2007); NSF CAREER Award (2008).
Interests: CAD for FPGA, nano-systems design and nano-centric synthesis, microprocessor architecture design under process variation, and reconfigurable computing.
Info: Web site not available

Josephine Cheng
M.S. 1975; advisor Richard Muntz
Current: VP, IBM Corporation
Honors: IBM Fellow (2000), YWCA’s Tribute to Women in Industry award (1996), honorary professorship from Shanghai University (2000-2003); Women of Color Technology Innovation award (2001), Asian American Engineer of the Year award (2003). National Academy of Engineering (2006).
Interests: Relationship database technology, advanced technologies for IBM database products in pervasive computing.

Ryan Cunningham
M.S. 2005; advisor Eddie Kohler
Current: Founder of “Jumpcut,” a pioneer in video editing technology that enhances the online video world by enabling anyone to become a creator. Jumpcut acquired by Yahoo! in 2006.

Rina Dechter
Ph.D. 1985; advisor Judea Pearl
Current: Professor, University of California, Irvine
Honors: Presidential Young Investigator award (1991), AAAI Fellow, Radcliffe Fellow (2005-2006), authored one book and over 100 papers, editorial board member of several AI publications.
Interests: Computational aspects of automated reasoning and knowledge representation, including search, constraint processing and probabilistic reasoning.

Milenko Drinic
Ph.D. 2004; advisor Miodrag Potkonjak (UCLA) and Darko Kirovsk (Microsoft)
Current: Microsoft Research Corp.
Interests: Hypermedia-aided design, code optimization for code compression, trusted software integrity.

Yiping Fan
Ph.D. 2006; advisor Jason Cong
Current: Cofounder and director of engineering, AutoESL Design Technologies
Interests: System-level synthesis, high-level synthesis, platform-based designs

David Feng
Ph.D. 1988; advisor Joseph DiStefano
Current: Professor, associate dean of faculty, University of Sydney; honorary research consultant, Royal Prince Alfred Hospital; chair-professor of information technology, Hong Kong Polytechnic University; advisory professor, chief scientist, chief scientific advisor and chair of scientific advisory board of Med-X Research Institute, Shanghai JiaoTong University; guest professor, Northwestern Polytechnic University, Northeastern University, Beijing Post and Telecommunication University, and Tsinghua University.
Honors: Crump Prize for Excellence in Medical Engineering (UCLA); Fellow of Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering; ACS, HKIE, IET, and IEEE; special area editor of IEEE Transactions on Information Technology in Biomedicine; chairman of International Federation of Automatic Control (IFAC) Technical Committee on Biological and Medical Systems.
founder and director of BMIT Research Group; over 400 scholarly research papers.
Interests: Biomedical & multimedia information technology, computer modeling & simulation,
functional imaging, visualization & vision, data compression, video data processing & management.

Chris Ferguson
Ph.D. 1999; advisor Leonard Kleinrock
Current: World-class poker champion
Honors: Winner of the 2000 World Series of Poker; winner of the 2001 and 2003 Omaha Hi/Lo Split; winner of more bracelets (5), more final tables (25), and more money finishes (42) than any other player. Helped launch online poker site “Full Tilt Poker.” Live tournament winnings exceed $6M.
Interests: Poker and swing dancing.

Hector Geffner
Ph.D. 1990; advisor Judea Pearl
Current: Researcher at Institucio Catalena de Recerca i Estudis Avancats and professor at Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Barcelona, Spain
Honors: AAAI Fellow, associate editor Journal of Artificial Intelligence Research
Interests: Models of reasoning, action, planning and learning

Dan Geiger
Ph.D. 1990; advisor Judea Pearl
Current: Professor, Technion: Israel Institute of Technology
Interests: Probabilistic models for intelligent systems, especially the study of Bayesian networks and their applications in bioinformatics and in other domains.

Vipul Goyal
Ph.D. 2009; advisors Rafail Ostrovsky and Amit Sahai
Current: Researcher, Microsoft Research, India
Interests: Position-base cryptograhy; location-based security
Honors: Featured by Forbes in their top “30 Under 30” in the field of Science and Healthcare

Lei He
Ph.D. 1999; advisor Jason Cong
Current: Professor, University of California, Los Angeles
Honors: Outstanding Ph.D. Award (UCLA 1999); NSF CAREER Award (2000); Chancellor’s Faculty Development Award (UCLA 2003); IBM Faculty Award (2003); Northrop Grumman Excellence in Teaching Award (2005).
Interests: Computer-aided design of VLSI circuits and systems, interconnect modeling and design, power-efficient computer architectures and systems, programmable logic devices, circuits and systems in nano technologies, and numerical and combinatorial optimization.

Erin Kursun
Ph.D. 2006; advisor Glenn Reinman
Current: Reliability & Power-Award Microarchitecture Group, IBM T.J. Watson Research Center
Interests: Technology-aware microprocessor design, power and thermal management for microprocessor architectures and three-dimensional integration.
Info: Web site not available

Jin Hyung Kim
Ph.D. 1983; advisor Judea Pearl
Current: Professor of Information Science, Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology.
Honors: President of Korea R&D Information Center, member National Academy of Engineering of Korea, member Korean Academy of Science and Technology, International Association of Pattern Recognition Fellow, author of mre than 200 ppers in the area of artificial intelligence and pattern recognition.
Interests: Bayesian networks and hidden Markov models for the understanding of handwriting and recognition-based HCI

Darko Kirovski
Ph.D. 2001; advisor Miodrag Potkonjak
Current: Senior researcher, Microsoft Research Corp.
Honors: Microsoft Research Graduate Fellowship, ACM-IEEE DAC Graduate Fellowship, ACM Outstanding Ph.D. Dissertation in Electronic Design Automation, ACM Multimedia Best Paper.
Biometric systems for identification, multimedia forensics, content screening, image annotation.
Info: Web site not available

Cheng-Kok Koh
Ph.D. 1998; advisor Jason Cong
Current: Associate professor, Purdue University
Interests: General area of Computer Aided Design (CAD) for Very Large-Scale Integration (VLSI)

Farinaz Koushanfar
M.S. UCLA 2000; advisor Miodrag Potkonjak and A. Sangiovanni-Vincentelli : Ph.D. Berkeley 2005
Current: Assistant professor, Electrical & Computer Engineering, Rice University
Honors: ACM SIGDA Outstanding New Faculty Award (ONFA), Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE), Office of Naval Research (ONR) Young Investigator Program (YIP) Award, National Science Foundation (NSF) CAREER Award, Young Faculty Award from Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), MIT Technology Review TR-35 Award (World’s Top Innovators Under 35), Principal Director of Texas Instruments (TI) DSP Leadership University, National Academy of Engineering (NAE) “Frontiers of Engineering” Invitee, Coordinated Science Lab (CSL) Visiting Faculty Fellowship at UIUC, INTEL Open Collaborative Research (OCR) Fellowship, Best Student Paper Award at ACM SIGMOBILE (Mobicom), National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Student Research Fellowship, UCLA WOMAN4CHANGE Student Leadership Award
Interests: Hardware-based system security, customizable and adaptive system design, emerging technologies, energy-efficiency, optimization, and statistics.

Kim K. Leung
Ph.D. 1985; advisor Wesley Chu
Current: Professor, Electrical & Electronic Engr & CS Departments, Imperial College, London.
Honors: Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit Award (2004-2009), IEEE Fellow (2001), Lanchester Prize Honorable Mention (1997), Bell Labs Distinguished Staff Award (1994)
Interests: Wireless communications, technologies & networks; stochastic modeling & queuing theory.

Guojie Luo
Ph.D. 2011; advisor Jason Cong
Current: Assistant Professor, Peking University
Honors: ACM SIGDA Outstanding PhD Dissertation Award in electronic design automation
Interests: Placement and design planning for 3D integrated circuits

Sung-Kyu Lim
Ph.D. 2000; advisor Jason Cong
Current: Associate professor, Georgia Institute of Technology
Honors: DAC Graduate Scholarship (2003), NSF Early Career Development Award (2006), Outstanding Junior Faculty Member Award (2007)
Interests: Physical design for 3D IC/SIP, embedded passive circuits, microarchitectural floorplanning, and field programmable analog array.

Patrick Madden
Ph.D. 1998; advisor Jason Cong
Current: Associate professor, State University of New York at Binghamton
Interests: Optimization for NP-hard problems with applications to VLSI integrated circuit design, protein identification and cryptography.

Gustavo Marfia
Ph.D. 2012, Advisors Mario Gerla and Giovanni Pau
Current: Assistant Professor, University of Bologna, Italy

Igor L. Markov
Ph.D. 2001; advisor Andrew Kahng
Current: Associate Professor, University of Michigan Ann Arbor
Honors: IBM University Partnership Award, 2001, the IEEE/ACM Design Automation Conf. fellowship, 2001, the 2004 IEEE Circuits and Systems (CaS) Society Donald O. Pederson Award a paper in IEEE Trans. on Computer-Aided Design, the 2004 ACM SIGDA Outstanding New Faculty Award (presented at ICCAD in November 2004), best paper award at DATE 2005, NSF CAREER Award 2005, ACM SIGDA Technical Leadership Award, SIGDA member of Advisory Board 2005-2006 and Executive Board 2007, editorial boards of IEEE Trans. on CAD, IEEE Trans. on Computers, ACM Trans. on Design Automation, Comm. ACM., EECS Outstanding Achievement Award from the Univ. of Michigan, January 2008, Microsoft A. Richard Newton Breakthrough Research Award, March 2008, best paper award at ISPD 2008.
Interests: combinatorial optimization, algorithms and software tools for electronic design automation, quantum information processing.

Tony Martinez
Ph.D. 1986, advisor Jacques Vidal
Current: Professor and department chair, CS Department, Brigham Young University
Honors: BYU Excellence in Teaching Award (1991), BYU College of Physical & Mathematical Sciences Excellence in Teaching Award (1997); BYU Karl G. Maeser award for research & creative arts (1997); faculty election to honor society of Phi Kappa Phi (1998)
Interests: Neural networks, computational intelligence and natural computing, machine learning. Over 100 refereed journal and conference papers.

Dan Massey
Ph.D. 2000; advisor Lixia Zhang
Current: Program Manager, Cyper Security Division, US Department of Homeland Security
Honors: Early Career Teaching Award (Colorado State Univ, 2006)
Interests: Security and resiliency for large-scale distributed systems, global Internet BGP routing system, DNS naming system, and designs for future Internet architectures.

Seapahn Megerian
Ph.D. 2005; advisor Miodrag Potkonjak
Current: Google Corp.
Interests: Networked embedded systems, wireless sensor networks, smart spaces and environment control, automated design space exploration, application-specific compilation, watermarking and computational security

Risto Miikkulainen
Ph.D. 1990; advisor Michael Dyer
Current: Professor, Computer Science Department, University of Texas at Austin
Honors: Author of three books and over 200 publications.
Interests: Biologically inspired computation such as neural networks and evolutionary computation..

Michael Minock
Ph.D. 1997; advisor Wesley Chu
Current: Associate professor, University of Umea, Sweden
Honors: Program chair for ASIS 2006, reviewer for Data and Knowledge Engineering nd
Journal of Natural Language Engineering
Interests: Natural language interfaces to relational databases, probabilistic and causal reasoning, machine learning.

Barzan Mozafari
Ph.D. 2012, Advisor Carlo Zaniolo
Current: Assistant Professor, University of Michigan

V. Krishna Nandivada
Ph.D. 2005; advisor Jens Palsberg
Current: Researcher at IBM India Research Laboratory, Delhi
Interests: Program analysis, programming language design applied to compiler optimizations, program reasoning, model checking etc.

Eric Osterweil
Ph.D. 2010; advisor Lixia Zhang
Current: Principal Scientist, VeriSign
Interests: Internet security and architecture, such as DNS-based DDoS attacks, BGP routing security, large-scale measurements.

David Pan
Ph.D. 2000; advisor Jason Cong
Current: Associate Professor, University of Austin, Texas
Honors: IBM Research Fellowship (1999); Dimitris Chorafas Foundation Award and SRC Inventor Recognition Award (2000); UCLA Outstanding Ph.D. Award (2001); IBM Research Bravo Award & IBM Faculty Award (2003-2006); ACM Recognition of Service Award & NSF Career Award (2007).
Interests: Nanometer physical CAD, design for manufacturability (DFM), variation-tolerant designs, VLSI interconnects, novel circuitry and CAD for low power, vertical integration of architecture, circuit and technology.

David A. Patterson
Ph.D. 1976; advisor David Martin
Current: Professor, University of California, Berkeley
Honors: Fellow of ACM and IEEE; National Academy of Engineering; Japan’s Computer & Communication award (2005); Silicon Valley Engineering Hall of Fame (2005); American Academy of Arts and Sciences and National Academy of Sciences; Computing Research Association’s Distinguished Service Award (2006); Fellow of the Computer History Museum and of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (2007).
Interests: Design and implementation of RISC I—became the foundation of the SPARC architecture; leader of Redundant Arrays of Inexpensive Disks (RAID) project—led to reliable storage systems from many companies; Network of Workstations (NOW)—led to architectures used by Internet companies such as Inktomi; parallel computing and reliable adaptive distributed systems.

Michael Pazzani
Ph.D, 1987; advisor Michael Dyer
Current: Professor computer science, Rutgers State University; VP of research and graduate and professional education.
Honors: Fellow AAAI. Author of two books and over 100 publications
Interests: Information and intelligent information systems.

Dan Pei
Ph.D. 2005; advisor Lixia Zhang
Current: Senior member, technical staff, AT&T Research Labs
Interests: Network measurement and security
Info: Web site not available

Frank Pearce
B.S. 1990
Current: Senior Vice President, Product Development, Blizzard Entertainment Inc.

Chunyi Peng
Ph.D. 2012, Advisor Songwu Lu
Current: Assistant Professor, Ohio State University
Info: Web site not available

Hamid Pirahesh
Ph.D., Advisor Alfonso Cardenas
Current: Manager of Database Technology, IBM Almaden Research Center
Honors: IBM Fellow, IBM Master Inventor
Interests: Various aspects of database management, from research to product delivery; e-business and e-commerce; query optimization for complex query processing; OLAP cubes; complex data analysis; XML and web oriented database systems (XML, B2B and B2C); information integration systems.

Jon Postel
Ph.D. 1974, advisor Richard Muntz
Current: Deceased. Former director of ISI’s Computer Networks Division
Honors: Instrumental in beginnings of ARPANET and development of Network Measurement Center; editor of Request for Comment(RFC) document series. The Internet Society‘s Postel Award is named in his honor, as is the Postel Center at Information Sciences Institute.
Interests: Multi-machine Internet applications, multimedia conferencing and electronic mail, very large networks, and very high-speed communications.

Gang Qu
Ph.D. 2000; advisor Miodrag Potkonjak
Current: Associate professor, University of Maryland
Honors: Outstanding Master of Science award (1998), DAC graduate scholarship award (1999), George Corcoran Award (2002), best paper award, MobiCom 2001.
Interests: Intellectual property reuse and protection, lower power system design, applied cryptography, computer-aided synthesis and sensor networks.

Gabriel Robins
Ph.D. 1992; advisor Andrew Kahng
Current: Professor of computer Science, University of Virginia
Honors: NSF Young Investigator Award, Packard Foundation Fellowship, SIAM Outstanding Paper Prize, All-University Outstanding Teaching Award, Faculty Mentor award, Walter N. Munster Endowed Chair
Interests: Computer–aided design of VLSI, algorithms, computational biology, combinatorial optimization, computational geometry, national security and military issues. Expert witness for patent litigations, infringement analysis, and other intellectual property legal issues.

Reza Sadri
Ph.D. 2006; adviser Carlo Zaniolo
Current: Chief Technical Officer, Digital Spectrum Solutions, Inc.; CTO of Clenova, startup company—Internet search and discovery for social network analysis.
Interests: Pattern matching, optimization of sequence queries in databases
Info: Web site unavailable

Anahita Shayesteh
Ph.D. 2006; advisor Glenn Reinman
Current: Microprocessor Technology Lab, Intel Corp, Santa Clara
Interests: Computer architecture and microprocessor design
Info: Web site not available

George Stiny
Ph.D. 1975; advisor Sheila Greibach
Current: Professor of design and computation, Department of Architecture, MIT
Interests: invention and refinement of the idea of shape grammars, and his work stands as a critique of the vast majority of existing computer-aided design systems.

Andreas Terzis
Ph.D. 2000; advisor Lixia Zhang
Current: Assistant professor, Johns Hopkins University
Interests: Sensor networks—from application development, to network protocol design, information processing, and data management; network security—modeling of large-scale self-replicating malware, forensic analysis, botnets, and emerging threats.
Info: Web site not available

Jin Tian
Ph.D. 2002; advisor Judea Pearl
Current: Assistant professor, Iowa State University
Honors: NSF Faculty Early Career Development Award (2004)
Interests: Artificial intelligence: bayesian networks, probabilistic reasoning, causal reasoning/learning.

Benjamin Titzer
Ph.D. 2007; advisor Jens Palsberg
Current: Software Engineer, Google, Munich, Germany
Interests: JVM implementation research, programming languages and compilers for embedded systems. Developed Avrora microcontroller/sensor network emulator and Virgil, an object-oriented programming language & compiler system for microcontroller systems.

Haixun Wang
Ph.D. 2000; advisor Carlo Zaniolo
Current: Technical Assistant, VP of Computer Science, IBM Research
Honors: ICDE’09 Demo PC Chair, APWeb’08 Industry PC Chair, ICDM’08 Exhibit and Demo Chair, SIGMOD’07 Sponsor Chair, SIGKDD’08 Senior PC member, VLDB’08 PC member, SDM’08 PC member, ICDM’08 PC member. Authored over 100 papers
Interests: Data mining, information retrieval, database system and language
Info: Web site not available

Lan Wang
Ph.D. 2004; advisor Lixia Zhang
Current: Assistant professor, University of Memphis
Interests: Fault-tolerance and security in network protocol design, network measurement techniques, scalable NW simulator design, routing protocol design, sensor NW protocols.

Wei Wang
Ph.D. 1999; advisor Richard Muntz
Current: Associate professor and member of Carolina Center for Genomic Sciences, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Honors: IBM Invention Achievement award (2000 and 2001), UNC Junior Faculty Development award (2003), NSF Faculty Early Career Development award (2005), Microsoft Research New Faculty Fellow (2005), Phillip and Ruth Hettleman Prize for Artistic and Scholarly Achievement (2007).
Interests: Data mining, bioinformatics, and dtabases.

Brent Waters
Ph.D. 2004, Princeton University; advisor Ed Felten and Amit Sahai
Current: Assistant Professor, University of Texas at Austin
Honors: Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists & Engineers (PECASE), Packard Fellowship, Microsoft Faculty Fellowship, Sloan Fellowship
Interests: Cryptography and computer security

Jennifer Wong
Ph.D. 2006; advisor Miodrag Potkonjak
Current: Assistant professor, SUNY Stony Brook University, NY
Interests: Non-parametric statistical modeling for optimization tasks, wireless distributed embedded systems, sensor networks, embedded systems and CAD.

Sarah Songjie Xu
Ph.D. 2000; advisor Jason Cong
Current: Intel Corporation
Interests: FPGA CAD and architecture, standard cell physical design, DFM
Info: Web site not available

Wenyao Xu
Ph.D. 2012 (EE), Advisors Majid Sarrafzadeh and Lei He (EE)
Current: Assistant Professor, SUNY Buffalo
Info: Web site not available

Beichuan Zhang
Ph.D. 2005; advisor Lixia Zhang
Current: Assistant professor, University of Arizona
Interests: Computer networks, including large-scale distributed networks, Internet routing, overlay networks, multicast, network measurement and performance evaluation, network security, and mobile and wireless networks.

Weixiong Zhang
Ph.D. 1994; advisor Richard Korf
Current: Associate professor, Computer Science & Genetics, Washington University, St. Louis
Honors: Grant from Alzheimer’s Association; editorial board of Artificial Intelligence,
Interests: Computational molecular and systems biology, artificial intelligence, combinatorial optimization.

Zhiru Zhang
Ph.D. 2007; advisor Jason Cong
Current: Assistant professor at Cornell ECE Department
Past Position: Cofounder and director of engineering, AutoESL Design Technologies
Interests: Platform-based HW/SW co-design for embedded systems, communication-centric behavioral synthesis, compilation techniques for reconfigurable systems