Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

Prof. Todd Austin Receives 2007 Maurice Wilkes Award   Bookmark and Share

Prof. Todd Austin was presented with the 2007 Maurice Wilkes Award at the 2007 International Symposium on Computer Architecture (ISCA) Awards Banquet, "for innovative contributions in Computer Architecture including the SimpleScalar Toolkit and the DIVA and Razor architectures."

Prof. Austin's primary research lies in the areas of computer architecture, VLSI design, and error-resilient design. He came to U-M from Intel, where he led microarchitecture research efforts for future-generation microprocessors. He is founder and president of SuperScalar LLC. The SimpleScalar tools are a collection of compiler, assembler, linker and simulator tools for SimpleScalar PISA and other popular architectures. The tool set provides researchers and educators with an easily extensible, portable, high-performance test bed for computer system design or instruction. The SimpleScalar tool set is in use at more than 75 universities and research centers, and it has been the simulation infrastructure used in more than 125 systems courses and 2,600 refereed publications.

His work on the Razor architecture was recognized with a 2007 Microprocessor Report Analysts' Choice Award for Innovation, along with his colleagues David Blaauw and Trevor Mudge who collaborated on this project.

More recently, Prof. Austin is making news with his research on "self-healing" chips, called "BulletProof," in collaboration with Prof. Valeria Bertacco. BulletProof is the name for a new approach to chip design that will detect and correct certain errors before they affect the outcome of the computation. The microprocessor will, in effect, heal itself. He is also involved in a new project in low-power design called Subliminal Systems, in collaboration with Prof. David Blaauw. Using solar cells to scavenge energy from the environment, they have designed a sensor platform that consumes far less energy than any previously published sensor network processor.

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The Maurice Wilkes Award is the top mid-career award presented by the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) in computer architecture. The award, named after one of the 20th century's major computer pioneers, is an annual, international award that recognizes outstanding contributions to computer design made by an individual whose computer-related career started fewer than 20 years ago.