The Richard Tapia Celebration of Diversity in Computing Conference, a biennial event sponsored by the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and the IEEE Computer Society (IEEE-CS) in cooperation with the Computing Research Association (CRA), had its most successful event to date on October 14-17, 2007 in Orlando, Florida. The conference is the premier event for the Coalition to Diversify Computing (CDC), a joint organization of the ACM, CRA, and IEEE-CS. The next celebration will take place April 1-4, 2009, on the West Coast of the United States.
Computing Research News
Archive of articles published in the 2008 issue.
I have some exciting news to share with all of you: NSF is partnering with Google and IBM to explore data-intensive computing. Through NSF’s reach, Google and IBM are providing software and services running on a large cluster to the broad academic community to explore innovative research and education ideas in data-intensive computing. Google and IBM launched the Academic Cluster Computing Initiative last October with instructional programs at six pilot universities, and the NSF will be joining this initiative as the first research-oriented pilot partner. We are calling the NSF program to provide access to these types of resources the Cluster Exploratory (CluE).
CRA’s Taulbee Survey of Ph.D.-granting Computer Science (CS) and Computer Engineering departments in North America has been conducted annually since 1974. Results from the most recent survey were provided to participants and CRA members in February. They will be published on CRA’s website (http://www.cra.org/statistics/) and in Computing Research News in May. Due to widespread interest, CRA releases data on undergraduate degrees early.
Research programs at the Department of Defense will see some increases in funding, thanks to final passage of the FY 2008 Defense Appropriations bill (H.R. 434), but some programs of interest to the computing research community will lose funding, largely because the agency responsible—the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency—was too slow to spend it.
Many believe that the problems of sexual harassment and gender discrimination have largely vanished in our computer science community. While the prevalence of explicit discrimination and open harassment has diminished, it has not gone away entirely and implicit bias continues to exist. Discussions among female researchers on on-line forums and in professional groups indicate that graduate students and junior faculty in particular have concerns, and at times experience disturbing instances. There seems to be a consensus that departmental leadership plays a crucial role in creating a better environment. With this in mind, the 2008 CRA Conference at Snowbird for department chairs and labs/centers directors will include a panel session on sexual harassment and gender discrimination.
CRA Announces Outstanding Undergraduate Award Winners
Computing Research News interviews Ed Lazowska, Bill & Melinda Gates Chair of Computer Science & Engineering at the University of Washington, and Chair of the Computing Community Consortium. Short articles on the CCC in its formative stages appeared in the November 2006 and May 2007 issues of CRN.
As technologists, we often focus on the technical aspects of our profession. Yet the cultural transformation wrought by the technologies we create is deep and profound, with implications for how we train a new generation of researchers and how we attract new and more diverse computing students. Herewith are a few memories to personalize and ponder.