Google’s Sanjay Ghemawat Co-Winner of Computer Award

Google software developer Sanjay Ghemawat is co-winner of the 2012 ACM-Infosys Foundation Award in the Computing Sciences.

New York-based ACM (Association for Computing Machinery) and the Bangalore-based Infosys Foundation have named Google developers Sanjay Ghemawat and Jeffrey Dean co-recipients of the “2012 ACM-Infosys Foundation Award in the Computing Sciences.”

The award recognizes leading innovation by young scientists and system developers in the computing field.

They led conception, design and implementation of much of Google’s software infrastructure, which was the foundation of the company’s Web search and indexing technology. Their research was also pivotal for the growing field of cloud computing.

An endowment from the Infosys Foundation provides financial support for the annual award of $175,000, which will be presented at a banquet in San Francisco June 15.

S.D. Shibulal, CEO and managing director, Infosys, said, “The engineering innovations of Dean and Ghemawat have led to technological advances in cloud computing and smarter analysis of data points, both areas that are critical in today's fast-paced information age.”

“In their influential 2004 research paper, “MapReduce: Simplified Data Processing on Large Clusters,” Dean and Ghemawat explained that when they found that they could not deploy machines fast enough to handle an unprecedented volume of requests driven by the increasingly popular Google search service, they looked for software solutions to what seemed like hardware problems.

The software platforms they designed split the work into small pieces, spreading them across thousands of machines. The software systems employ designs that allow them to scale many computers and to hide the complexities of managing enormous clusters of computers from programmers.

Ghemawat also co-led a team that built Google File System, which allows huge files to be distributed across thousands of servers. The two developers also led a team that developed BigTable, a distributed data storage system that handles petabytes of data. 

Ghemawat is a Google Fellow in the systems infrastructure group. A former researcher at Digital Equipment Corp.’s System Research Center, the Indian American was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 2009. Ghemawat has a B.S. from Cornell University and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in computer science from MIT.



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