Monday, June 1, 2015
David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science alumnus Matei Zaharia has been awarded the 2014 ACM Doctoral Dissertation Award for his "innovative solution to tackling the surge in data processing workloads, and accommodating the speed and sophistication of complex multi-stage applications and more interactive ad-hoc queries," explains a press release by the Association for Computing Machinery.
"[Zaharia's] work proposed new architecture for cluster computing systems, achieving best-in-class performance in a variety of workloads while providing a simple programming model that lets users easily and efficiently combine them. Zaharia developed Resilient Distributed Datasets (RDDs). As described in his dissertation, An Architecture for Fast and General Data Processing on Large Clusters, RDDs are a distributed memory abstraction that lets programmers perform computations on large clusters in a fault-tolerant manner."
Zaharia received his BMath with a double major in Computer Science and Combinatorics and Optimization in 2007. It was during that time that he won a gold medal at the ACM International Collegiate Programming Contest (ICPC). In 2014, Zaharia was awarded the Faculty of Mathematics Young Alumni Achievement Medal. He is the co-founder of a red-hot startup, Databricks. Based on his thesis work on Spark, an open-source system for big data, it has made large-scale data manipulation and analysis accessible to nearly everyone.
Zaharia will receive the Doctoral Dissertation Award and its $20,000 prize at the annual ACM Awards Banquet on June 20 in San Francisco.
Financial sponsorship of the award is provided by Google Inc.