John Hopcroft’s Keynote Speech on the 14th Computing in the 21st Century Conference co-hosted by Microsoft Research Asia, Nankai University and Tianjin University on October 25, 2012.
Computer science is undergoing a fundamental change. Over the last 40 years the field was concerned with making computers useful. Focus was on programming languages, compilers, operating systems, data structures and algorithms. These are still important topics but with the merging of computing and communication, the emergence of social networks, and the large amount of information in digital form, focus is shifting to applications such as the structure of networks and extracting information from large data sets. This talk will give a brief vision of the future and then an introduction to the science base that is forming to support these new directions in computer science.
ABOUT THE SPEAKER
John E. Hopcroft is the IBM Professor of Engineering and Applied Mathematics in Computer Science at Cornell University. From January 1994 until June 2001, he was the Joseph Silbert Dean of Engineering. After receiving both his M.S. (1962) and Ph.D. (1964) in electrical engineering fromStanford University, he spent three years on the faculty of Princeton University. He joined the Cornell faculty in 1967, was named professor in 1972 and the Joseph C. Ford Professor of Computer Science in 1985. He served as chairman of the Department of Computer Science from 1987 to 1992 and was the associate dean for college affairs in 1993. An undergraduate alumnus of Seattle University, Hopcroft was honored with a Doctor of Humanities Degree, Honoris Causa, in 1990.
Hopcroft’s research centers on theoretical aspects of computing, especially analysis of algorithms, automata theory, and graph algorithms. He has coauthored four books on formal languages and algorithms with Jeffrey D. Ullman and Alfred V. Aho. His most recent work is on the study of information capture and access.
He was honored with the A. M. Turing Award in 1986. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences (NAS), the National Academy of Engineering (NAE) and a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (AAAS), the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), and the Association of Computing Machinery (ACM). In 1992, he was appointed by President Bush to the National Science Board (NSB), which oversees the National Science Foundation (NSF), and served through May 1998. From 1995-98, Hopcroft served on the National Research Council’s Commission on Physical Sciences, Mathematics, and Applications.
In addition to these appointments, Hopcroft serves as a member of the Scientific Advisory Committee for the David and Lucile Packard Fellowships in Science and Engineering, the SIAM financial management committee, IIIT New Delhi advisory board, Microsoft‘s technical advisory board for research Asia, the Engineering Advisory Board, Seattle University, and the program committee for Chile Millennium Science Initiative.