Alfred Z. Spector
Vice President of Services and Software, IBM Research Division
Over the 50 years of modern computer science, computer systems have had
a demonstrated capacity to automate an enormous variety of tasks, and
per-task costs have been greatly reduced. However, there are two key challenges
on the horizon: 1. In many areas, further declines in transaction costs
by traditional means are subject to the laws of diminishing returns. 2.
The complexity of infrastructure management threatens to outweigh the
benefits of further automation. In this talk, I shall illustrate these
two dilemmas and describe a research agenda aimed at them. One foundation
of this agenda is process integration with a heavy focus on continual
optimization -- the application of mathematical techniques to optimize
operations at many systemic levels and at varying granularities of time.
The other foundation is autonomic computing -- worked aimed at automating
automation. I shall survey some research projects at IBM that are related
to these two areas, but attempt also to more broadly describe the overall
Dr. Alfred Z.
Spector is vice president of Services and Software in IBM Research's
Division responsible for setting IBM's worldwide research strategy in
support of its Services and Software businesses. Recently, Dr. Spector
was an Adjunct Professor at Columbia University's Computer Science Department
and Senior Technical Strategist in IBM's Application and Integration Middleware
(AIM) business, which has responsibility for a number of IBM software
product families including CICS, WebSphere, MQSeries, and WebSphere Studio
and Eclipse. Previously, Dr. Spector was the general manager of Marketing
and Strategy for IBM's AIM business, and the general manager of IBM's
Transaction Systems business. Dr. Spector was also founder and CEO of
Transarc Corporation , a pioneer in distributed transaction processing
and wide area file systems, and an Associate Professor of Computer Science
at Carnegie Mellon University . Prior to joining Carnegie Mellon, Dr.
Spector was affiliated with the IBM San Jose (now Almaden) Research Laboratory
while in graduate school.
Dr. Spector received his Ph.D. in Computer Science from Stanford University
on the topic of multiprocessing architectures for local area computer
networks and his A.B. in Applied Mathematics, Magna cum Laude, from Harvard