Parallel computing pioneer Marc Snir to receive 2013 IEEE Seymour Cray Award at SC13

DENVER, CO – Dr. Marc Snir, a parallel computing pioneer whose innovative work has advanced the elite supercomputing systems that drive scientific discovery, will receive this year’s IEEE Computer Society Seymour Cray Computer Engineering Award at SC13 in Denver this November.

Director of the Mathematics and Computer Science Division at Argonne National Laboratory, Snir is also the Michael Faiman and Saburo Muroga Professor in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign (UIUC), a department he led from 2001-2007. Since 2007 he has also served as the lead software architect for the Blue Waters supercomputing system at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications (NCSA) at UIUC.

“Marc has contributed to the development of some of the most successful high performance computing architectures developed to date and spearheaded innovations that have led to broad use parallel programming by the HPC community,” said Bill Gropp, SC13 chair and Thomas M. Siebel chair in Computer Science at UIUC. “He is one of those rare scientists today who is shaping both supercomputing and the widespread adoption of parallel programming it makes possible.”

While at IBM, Snir’s research group contributed to several scalable parallel computing systems, including the IBM Blue Gene family of machines. In addition, he was one of the principal developers of the Message Passing Interface (MPI), widely regarded as the most successful parallel programming interface yet created. Snir currently plays a leadership role in the DOE-led effort to develop next-generation exascale systems within the decade.

Snir received a PhD in mathematics from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in 1979, worked at New York University on the NYU Ultracomputer project in 1980-1982, and was at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in 1982-1986, before joining IBM.

An Argonne Distinguished Fellow, AAAS Fellow, ACM Fellow, and IEEE Fellow, Snir has published influential papers and given many presentations on computational complexity, parallel algorithms, parallel architectures, interconnection networks, parallel languages, libraries, and parallel programming environments.

The Seymour Cray Computer Engineering Award, one of IEEE Computer Society's highest honors, is presented in recognition of the innovative contributions to high-performance computing systems that best exemplify Cray's creative spirit. Recipients are awarded a $10,000 honorarium, a crystal memento, and a certificate.

Cray [] was a US electrical engineer and supercomputer architect who designed a series of computers that for decades were the fastest in the world. He founded Cray Research, which built many of these machines. Widely regarded as "the father of supercomputing," Cray has been credited with helping create the supercomputer industry.

Previous Seymour Cray award recipients were Ken Batcher, John Cocke, Glen Culler, William J. Dally, Monty Denneau, Alan Gara, John L. Hennessy, Peter Kogge, Kenichi Miura, Steven L. Scott, Charles Seitz, Burton J. Smith, Steven Wallach, and Tadashi Watanabe.

About SC13

SC13, sponsored by the ACM (Association for Computing Machinery) and the IEEE Computer Society, offers a complete technical program, programs for students and educators in HPC, and an exhibition that together showcase the many ways high performance computing, networking, storage and analysis lead to advances in scientific discovery, research, education and commerce. This premier international conference includes a globally attended technical program, workshops, tutorials, a world-class exhibit area, demonstrations and opportunities for hands-on learning.

The conference will be held Nov. 17-22 in the convention center, Denver, Colo.