PDL News


December 2016
Todd Mowry Named ACM Fellow

Congratulations to Todd Mowry on being named an ACM Fellow for 2016! Mowry, a professor in the Computer Science Department, was cited “for contributions to software prefetching and thread-level speculation.” His research interests span the areas of computer architecture, compilers, operating systems, parallel processing, database performance, and modular robotics. He co-leads the Log-Based Architectures project and the Claytronics project. In 2004-2007, he served as the director of Intel Labs Pittsburgh. Todd was among 53 members of the ACM, the world’s leading computing society, elevated to fellow status this year. ACM will formally recognize the 2016 fellows at the annual Awards Banquet in San Francisco on June 24, 2017.
-- Carnegie Mellon University News, Dec. 8, 2016, Byron Spice

July 2016
Announcing the Carnegie Mellon Database Application Catalog

The Carnegie Mellon Database Application Catalog (CMDBAC) is an on-line repository of open-source database applications that you can use for benchmarking and experimentation. The goal of this project is to provide ready-to-run real-world applications for researchers and practitioners that go beyond the standard benchmarks

We built a crawler that finds applications hosted on public repositories (e.g., GitHub). We then created a framework that automatically learns how to deploy and execute an application inside a virtual machine sandbox. You can then safely download the application on your local machine and execute it to collect query traces and other metrics.

The CMDBAC currently contains over 1000 applications of varying complexity. We target Web applications based on popular programming frameworks because (1) they are easier to find and (2) we can automate the deployment process. We support applications that use the Django, Ruby on Rails, Drupal, Node.js, and Grails frameworks.

Find the CMDBAC website at: and the source code at

April 2016
Joy Arulraj Receives Samsung PhD Fellowship

CMU DB and PDL Ph.D. student Joy Arulraj has won a Samsung 2017 PhD Fellowship in the area of Software and Memory System Solutions for Data Centers. Joy’s research is on developing the novel database management system architectures for emerging non-volatile memory technologies to support modern hybrid transactional/analytical processing (HTAP) applications.

The Samsung PhD Fellowship program awards outstanding graduate students working on cutting-edge research for innovative solutions to their fields’ biggest problems.
-- Carnegie Mellon Database News, April 2016

April 2016
Alexey Tumanov and Team win Best Student Paper at Eurosys16!

Congratulations to Alexey Tumanov, Timothy Zhu, Jun Woo Park, Michael A. Kozuch, and Mor Harchol-Balter, Gregory R. Ganger who have been awarded Best Student Paper for their work on "TetriSched: Global Rescheduling with Adaptive Plan-ahead in Dynamic Heterogeneous Clusters" at Eurosys16. The paper describes TetriSched, a scheduler that works in tandem with a calendaring reservation system to continuously re-evaluate the immediate-term scheduling plan for all pending jobson each scheduling cycle.

April 2016
Rajat Kateja Wins Best Graduate Poster Award!

The Award for the Carnegie Mellon Best Graduate Poster was presented to Rajat Kateja for his work on "Reducing Tail Latencies for Reads in Flash SSDs" on April 8th at the Carnegie Mellon Industry-Academia Partnership Workshop held at CMU. Participating professors and students were predominantly from the CMU School of Computer Science and the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, comprising members from many of the research centers, groups and labs including CyLab, Data Storage Systems Center, IoT Expedition, and the Parallel Data Lab. Rajat received a $300 cash award and framed certificate signed by his advisor and the IAP.

April 2016
Dana Van Aken Wins 2016 National Science Foundation Graduate Fellowship

CMU DB and PDL Ph.D. student Dana Van Aken won a National Science Foundation Graduate Fellowship. Dana’s research is focused on using machine learning techniques for automatic database management system tuning and configuration.

NSF’s Graduate Research Fellowship Program supports outstanding student researchers pursuing graduate degrees in science, technology, engineering and mathematics who demonstrate the potential to have a significant impact in their fields. Almost 17,000 students applied for a total of 2,000 fellowships awarded nationwide.
-- Carnegie Mellon Database News, April 2016

March 2016
Kristy Gardner Receives SCS Graduate Student Teaching Award

Congratulations to Kristy Gardner on receiving the Alan J. Perlis Graduate Student Teaching Award for 2016. The SCS student teaching awards were inaugurated in 2005 and are named for Alan J. Perlis, a founder of the Computer Science Department at Carnegie Mellon and CMU's first Department Head (1965). These awards are based on student nominations, recommendation letters, and reviews and honors the student (graduate or undergraduate) who has shown the highest degree of excellence and dedication as a teaching assistant.


December 2015
Federal Trade Commission Appoints Lorrie Cranor as Chief Technologist

Federal Trade Commission Chairwoman Edith Ramirez has appointed Lorrie Faith Cranor as the agency’s Chief Technologist, succeeding Ashkan Soltani. Cranor will join the FTC staff in January and be primarily responsible for advising Chairwoman Ramirez and the Commission on developing technology and policy matters.

Cranor is currently a Professor of Computer Science and Engineering and Public Policy at Carnegie Mellon University, where she directs the CyLab Usable Privacy and Security Laboratory. She was previously a researcher at AT&T Labs Research and has also taught at the Stern School of Business at New York University.

“Technology is playing an ever more important role in consumers’ lives, whether through mobile devices, personal fitness trackers, or the increasing array of Internet-connected devices we find in homes and elsewhere,” said FTC Chairwoman Edith Ramirez. “We are delighted to welcome Lorrie to our team, where she will play a key role in helping guide the many areas of FTC work involving new technologies and platforms.

Cranor has authored over 150 research papers on online privacy and usable security, and has played a central role in establishing the usable privacy and security research community, including her founding of the Symposium on Usable Privacy and Security. She is also a co-director of Carnegie Mellon’s Privacy Engineering masters’ program.

Cranor holds a doctorate in Engineering and Policy, masters’ degrees in Computer Science, and Technology and Human Affairs, and a bachelor’s degree in Engineering and Public Policy, from Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri.

The Federal Trade Commission works for consumers to prevent fraudulent, deceptive, and unfair business practices and to provide information to help spot, stop, and avoid them.
-- Dec. 3, 2015 FTC Press Release, Frank Dorman

More recent PDL news here.