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The Inaugural Doug Shepherd Memorial Lecture

Interactive Data Exploration with Diamond
Prof. Mahadev Satyanarayanan
Carnegie Group Professor of Computer Science, Carnegie Mellon University

Tuesday 20th May, 16:00, Management School LT1

The Computing Department at Lancaster University is pleased to announce details of the inaugural Doug Shepherd Memorial Lecture. Professor Doug Shepherd made an enormous and lasting contribution to the University in his various leadership roles as Department Head, School Dean, and ISS Director and was an inspiration to all who worked with him. Under his leadership the Department adopted an experimental systems focus to its research and it is only fitting that the inaugural lecture be given by one of the world's leading experimental computer scientists - Prof Mahadev Satyanarayanan, the Carnegie Group Professor of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University. The lecture will focus on Diamond - a new system for data exploration that is likely to be of interest to a wide cross section of the scientific community. The lecture will take place on Tuesday 20th May at 16:00 in the Management School LT1 and will be followed by a cheese and wine reception hosted by the Department.


How does an expert discover something relevant to a task in a large distributed repository of complex and loosely-structured data? For example, how does a pharmaceutical researcher identify adverse effects of a drug in a large collection of automated cell microscopy images? The term "adverse effects" refers to a vague concept. A more precise definition can only be given after examining the data in some depth. In other words, hypothesis-formation and hypothesis-validation proceed hand-in-hand in a tightly-coupled and iterative sequence. We refer to this inherently human-centric activity as "interactive data exploration."

Diamond is an open-source software platform for interactive data exploration that has been jointly developed by Intel Research and Carnegie Mellon. It implements the concept of "early discard," which makes interactive exploration of non-indexed data practical. It also embodies the concept of "self-tuning," which enables dynamic adaptation
to variability in hardware, workloads, and data content in a manner that is completely transparent to users and applications.

Medical and pharmaceutical researchers at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and at Merck, Inc. are collaborating with Diamond researchers to apply Diamond to their domain-specific tasks. This may open the door to new research and diagnostic strategies.

Prof Mahadev Satyanarayanan

Satya is an experimental computer scientist who has pioneered research in mobile and pervasive computing. One outcome is the open-source Coda File System, which supports distributed file access in low-bandwidth and intermittent wireless networks through disconnected and bandwidth-adaptive operation. The Coda concepts ofhoarding, reintegration and application-specific conflict resolution can be found in the hotsync capability of PDAs today. Key ideas from Coda have been incorporated by Microsoft into the IntelliMirror component of Windows 2000 and the Cached Exchange Mode of Outlook 2003. Another outcome of Satya's work is Odyssey, a set of open-source operating system extensions that enable mobile applications to adapt to variation in critical resources such as network bandwidth and energy. Coda and Odyssey are building blocks in Project Aura, a research initiative at Carnegie Mellon to explore distraction-free ubiquitous computing. His most recent work in this space is Internet Suspend/Resume, a hands-free approach to mobile computing that exploits virtual machine technology to liberate personal computing state from hardware. Satya is a co-inventor of many supporting technologies relevant to mobile and pervasive computing, such as data staging, lookaside caching, translucent caching and application-aware adaptation. He is also a co-inventor of the Diamond approach to interactive, non-indexed search of complex and loosely-organized data such as digital photographs and medical images. Early in his career, Satya was a principal architect and implementor of the Andrew File System (AFS) which pioneered the use of scalable file caching, ACL-based security, and volume-based system administration for enterprise-scale information sharing. AFS was commercialized by IBM, is in widespread use today as OpenAFS, and has heavily influenced the NFS v4 network file system protocol standard that was published in April 2003.

Satya is the Carnegie Group Professor of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University. From May 2001 to May 2004 he served as the founding director of Intel Research Pittsburgh, one of four university-affiliated research labs established worldwide by Intel to create disruptive information technologies through its Open Collaborative Research model. Satya received the PhD in Computer Science from Carnegie Mellon, after Bachelor's and Master's degrees from the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras. He is a Fellow of the ACM and the IEEE, and was the founding Editor-in-Chief of IEEE Pervasive Computing.