Panel Discussion: Interdisciplinarity: The Future of Computer Science?


October 30, 2014


Thomas Moscibroda, Takeo Kanade, Butler Lampson, Christos Papadimitriou, and Andrew Chi-Chih Yao


MSR, Carnegie Mellon University, UC Berkeley, Tsinghua University



Thomas Moscibroda, Takeo Kanade, Butler Lampson, Christos Papadimitriou, and Andrew Chi-Chih Yao

Thomas Moscibroda is a Post-Doc Researcher in the Distributed Systems and Security Research Group of Microsoft Research in Redmond. Before joining MSR, he was a PhD candidate and research assistant in the Distributed Computing Group of Prof. Roger Wattenhofer at ETH Zurich. He received his M.Sc. in Computer Science in 2004, and his Ph.D. in July 2006, both from ETH Zurich. His main research interests are distributed computing and systems, networking, as well as algorithmic aspects of computer architecture. For his research, he has been awarded the ACM PODC Best Student Paper Award, the SIGMOBILE MOBICOM Best Presentation Award, and he is the recipient of the ETH Medal for an outstanding doctoral thesis at ETH Zurich.

Takeo Kanade is the U. A. and Helen Whitaker University Professor of Computer Science and Robotics. He received his doctoral degree in Electrical Engineering from Kyoto University, Japan, in 1974. After holding a faculty position in the Department of Information Science, Kyoto University, he joined Carnegie Mellon University in 1980. He was the Director of the Robotics Institute from 1992 to 2001, and a founding director of Quality of Life Technology Research Center from 2006 to 2012. In Japan, he founded the Digital Human Research Center in Tokyo and served as the founding director from 2001 to 2010.

Dr. Kanade works in multiple areas of robotics: computer vision, multi-media, manipulators, autonomous mobile robots, medical robotics, and sensors. He has written more than 300 technical papers and reports in these areas, and holds more than 20 patents. He has been the principal investigator of more than a dozen major vision and robotics projects at Carnegie Mellon.

Dr. Kanade has been elected to the National Academy of Engineering, and also to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He is a Fellow of the IEEE, a Fellow of the ACM, a Founding Fellow of American Association of Artificial Intelligence (AAAI), and the former and founding editor of the International Journal of Computer Vision. The awards he has received include the Franklin Institute Bower Prize, Okawa Award, C&C Award, ACM/AAAI Allen Newell Award, Joseph Engelberger Award, IEEE Robotics and Automation Society Pioneer Award, FIT Accomplishment Award, and IEEE PAMI-TC Azriel Rosenfeld Lifetime Accomplishment Award.

Butler Lampson is a Technical Fellow at Microsoft Corporation and an adjunct professor of Computer Science and Electrical Engineering at MIT. He was on the faculty at Berkeley and then at the Computer Science Laboratory at Xerox PARC and at Digital’s Systems Research Center. He has worked on computer architecture, local area networks, raster printers, page description languages, operating systems, remote procedure call, programming languages and their semantics, programming in the large, fault-tolerant computing, transaction processing, computer security, WHSIWYG editors, and tablet computers. He was one of the designers of the SDS 940 time-sharing system, the Alto personal distributed computing system, the Xerox 9700 laser printer, two-phase commit protocols, the Autonet LAN, the SDSI/SPKI system for network security, the Microsoft Tablet PC software, the Microsoft Palladium high-assurance stack, and several programming languages.

He received an AB from Harvard University, a PhD in EECS from the University of California at Berkeley, and honorary ScDs from the Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule, Zurich and the University of Bologna. He holds a number of patents on networks, security, raster printing, and transaction processing. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering, and is a Fellow of the Association for Computing Machinery and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He received the ACM Software Systems Award in 1984 for his work on the Alto, the IEEE Computer Pioneer award in 1996, the National Computer Systems Security Award in 1998, the IEEE von Neumann Medal in 2001, the Turing Award in 1992, and the National Academy of Engineering’s Draper Prize in 2004.

At Microsoft, he has worked on anti-piracy, security, fault-tolerance, and user interfaces. He was one of the designers of Palladium, and spent two years as an architect in the Tablet PC group. Currently he is in Microsoft Research, working on security, privacy, and fault-tolerance, and kibitzing in systems, networking, and other areas.

Christos H. Papadimitriou is the C. Lester Hogan Professor of Computer Science at UC Berkeley, and the Senior Scientist of the Simons Institute for the Theory of Computing. Before joining Berkeley in 1996, he taught at Harvard, MIT, Athens Polytechnic, Stanford, and University of California, San Diego. He has written five textbooks and many articles on algorithms and complexity, and their applications to optimization, databases, AI, the Internet, economics, and evolution. He has also published three novels. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences (United States), the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the National Academy of Engineering. He holds a PhD from Princeton, and seven honorary doctorates.

Andrew Yao is currently the dean of the Institute for Interdisciplinary Information Sciences, at Tsinghua University, Beijing. He received his BS in Physics from National Taiwan University, PhD in Physics from Harvard University, and PhD in Computer Science from the University of Illinois. From 1975 onward, Yao served on the faculty at MIT, Stanford, UC Berkeley and, during 1986 to 2004, as William and Edna Macaleer Professor of Engineering and Applied Science at Princeton University. In 2004, he left Princeton to join Tsinghua University in Beijing. He is also a Distinguished Professor-at-Large at the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

Yao’s research interests are in the theory of computation and its applications to cryptography and quantum computing. In 2000, he was honored with the prestigious A.M. Turing Award for his contributions to the theory of computation, including pseudorandom number generation, cryptography, and communication complexity. He has received numerous other honors and awards, including the George Polya Prize, the Donald E. Knuth Prize, and several honorary degrees. He is a member of the US National Academy of Sciences, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the Chinese Academy of Sciences.