C3SR Anniversary Celebration

31/7/2021 2-minute read

I was honored to be the MC of the Center for Cognitive Cocomputing and Systems Research (C3SR) 5-year anniversary celebration. C3SR was a joint research center between IBM and the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, co-directed by Professor Wen-Mei Hwu, Dr. Jinjun Xiong, and Professor Sanjay Patel. It was responsible for a lot of my funding and opportunities as a Ph.D student with Professor Hwu.

the original press release from April 15, 2016 (original, archive) describes a plan to “build and optimize integrated systems such as state-of-the-art cognitive computing systems modeled on IBM’s Watson technology.” I played a small part in this, working on projects related to improving productivity for developers of computing systems, and then more specifically on multi-GPU programming. I also got experience managing some “Minsky” machines, with 2x POWER8 CPUs and 4x Nvidia P100 GPUs, mentoring students (including a high schooler), and spent a fall and a summer at IBM’s T. J. Watson Research Center.

I was honored to recieve the Director’s Distinguished Service Award for my mentoring work, and the Best Research Award, for my ICPE paper. As with anything done in grad school, evefything I did was only possible thanks to the following people:

  • my advisor Wen-Mei Hwu
  • Prfessor Vladimir Kindratenko and Dawei Mu for the NCSA HAL computing system
  • I-Hsin Chung and Jinjun Xiong from IBM’s T. J. Watson research for their help and mentorship
  • Professors Steve Lumetta, Sanjay Patel, Luke Olson for serving on my Ph.D committe
  • Professor Rakesh Nagi for his advice and guidance on graph algorithms
  • Simon Garcia de Gonzalo, Mert Hidayetogu, and Omer Anjum for our many shared hours and discussions
  • Tom Jablin for mentoring me early in my Ph.D and expanding my knowledge of C++
  • the rest of the IMPACT research team that I didn’t mention, for their help and support during our many meetings together.

C3SR was successfull enough that IBM and Illinois are doing it again (original, archive). The Discovery Accelerator Institute will be similar to C3SR, but focused on ybrid cloud and AI, quantum information science and technology, andaccelerated materials discovery.