The current economic times of budget tightening and streamlining have created a “get more with less” atmosphere. While that creates difficulties on the surface, it actually inspires innovation as we continue to surpass previous accomplishments with fewer resources.
Collaborating allows research institutions and corporations to develop new ideas and solve problems by relieving outside pressures such as reduced funding and constant demand for marketable products. Our Corporate Affiliates Program provides an excellent avenue for universities and industry to share resources that lead to the creation of new technologies. Each year, the annual Corporate Affiliates Meeting presents the opportunity for corporations to learn about the research that faculty and students are conducting at Rice. Each meeting includes presentations from faculty and invited guests and a student poster competition, where students display their latest research.
The 2009 Corporate Affiliates Meeting was held October 14–15, 2009, in Duncan Hall at Rice University. The meeting featured the following presentations:
If you are interested in learning more about the Affiliates program and the annual meeting, view our Corporate Affiliates Program 2009 brochure.
Browsers and BIOSes—Surfing Technology Curves
CTO and SVP, Phoenix Technologies, Inc.
The computer industry has undergone dramatic change in the last 10 years. We have moved from the Wintel Desktop PC era to the age of Google and iPhone. Much conventional thinking around business models and technologies has been turned upside down. Furthermore, the relentless march of globalization has hit our industry full and square, changing many axioms forever. The new world is a very flat, where people compute using BIOSes and Browsers. I will talk about a Rice graduate’s view on this shift, what it means to the world of business and academia, and my personal journey through all of this transition.
MCDB: The Monte Carlo Database System
Analysts working with large data sets often use statistical models to "guess" at unknown, inaccurate, or missing information associated with the data stored in a database. For example, an analyst for a manufacturer may wish to know, "What would my profits have been if I'd increased my margins by 5% last year?" The answer to this question naturally depends upon the extent to which the higher prices would have affected each customer's demand, which is undoubtedly guessed via the application of some statistical model.In this talk, I'll describe MCDB, which is a prototype database system that is designed for just such a scenario. MCDB allows an analyst to attach arbitrary stochastic models to the database data in order to "guess" the values for unknown or inaccurate data, such as each customer's unseen demand function. These stochastic models are used to produce multiple possible database instances in Monte Carlo fashion (a.k.a. "possible worlds"), and the underlying database query is run over each instance. In this way, fine-grained stochastic models become first-class citizens within the database.
Rethinking the Design of the Internet: From Control Plane Architecture to Data Plane Bug Detection
The design of the Internet can be traced back to heroic research efforts from the 1970's. Over the past three decades, the Internet has evolved from a small research inter-network, where no more than a few hundred individual networks were anticipated, to a vast global communication infrastructure that the world critically depends on. Despite the Internet's great success, it is widely acknowledged that the Internet's design has a number of architectural gaps that limit its manageability, security, and robustness. This talk will present some of our efforts on rethinking the Internet's design for a better future Internet.
Addressing Long-Term Challenges in Compiler Construction: The PACE Project
L. John and Ann H. Doerr Professor of Computational Engineering
This talk will provide an overview of the DARPA-sponsored PACE Project. PACE is building a compiler environment that vastly simplifies the process of retargeting to a new system. The PACE research program focuses on several key challenges in compiler design and in code optimization. The latter part will focus on some of the specific challenges that arise in automatic characterization of new systems.
October 14-15, 2009