About Me

I'm a Professor and the David R. Cheriton Chair in the David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science at the University of Waterloo. Previously, I was at the University of Maryland. I completed my Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at MIT in 2004.

My research aims to build tools that help users make sense of large amounts of data. I work at the intersection of information retrieval, natural language processing, and databases, with a focus on large-scale distributed algorithms and infrastructure for data analytics.

From 2010-2012, I spent an extended sabbatical at Twitter working on services designed to identify relevant content to users (search, recommendation, etc.) and analytics infrastructure to support data science (Hadoop tools, machine learning libraries, etc.). Follow me on Twitter here! I've also worked for Cloudera: In 2009, I was responsible for helping them build out a training and certification program; in fact, I wrote their very first certification exam!

At Waterloo, I've been active beyond the university. Presently, I serve as the Chief Technology Officer of Primal, a Waterloo-based synthetic semantic data company focused on creating meaning computers can understand. Previously, I was the Chief Scientist of RSVP, a Waterloo-based startup that builds deep natural language understanding technologies to facilitate seamless dialogues between users and systems.

Interesting tidbit: Friedrich Leibniz was my (grand-14)advisor.

Jimmy Lin headshot

Contact Information

Jimmy Lin
David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science
University of Waterloo
200 University Avenue West
Waterloo, ON N2L 3G1

keywords: Jimmy Lin, information retrieval (IR), natural language processing (NLP), big data, MapReduce, Hadoop, large-scale distributed systems, data-intensive text processing, question answering