Ian Foster was acknowledged for his pioneering research in Grid computing, integrating geographically distributed instruments, computers and data.
"I am extremely honoured to receive this award", stated Ian Foster. "Distributed computing is critical for solving complex system-level problems in a wide range of applications, from energy and climate to bioinformatics and molecular engineering, and continues to enable breakthroughs in research across the sciences."
Ian Foster is the Arthur Holly Compton Distinguished Service Professor of Computer Science at UChicago and an Argonne Distinguished Fellow at Argonne. He is considered one of the world's foremost researchers in distributed, parallel and dataintensive computing technologies.
The primary focus of Ian Foster's research has been the acceleration of discovery in a networked world. In partnership with many others, notably Carl Kesselman of the University of Southern California and Steven Tuecke, deputy director of the Computation Institute - formerly of Argonne and Univa Inc., Ian Foster developed and promulgated concepts and methods that underpin Grid computing.
These methods allow computing to be delivered reliably and securely on demand, as a service, and permit the formation and operation of virtual organisations linking people and resources worldwide. These results, and the associated Globus open-source software, have helped advance discovery in such areas as high-energy physics, environmental science and biomedicine. Grid computing methods also have proved influential outside the world of science, contributing to the emergence of Cloud computing.
Among recent projects, Globus Online seeks to outsource complex and time-consuming research management processes to software-as-a-service providers. The goal is to make the discovery potential of massive data, exponentially faster computers, and deep interdisciplinary collaboration accessible to every researcher, not just select "big science" projects.
Ian Foster received a B.S. degree with first-class honours from the University of Canterbury, New Zealand, and a Ph.D. from Imperial College, United Kingdom, both in computer science. He is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Association for Computing Machinery and British Computer Society. His other awards include the Global Information Infrastructure Next Generation award, the British Computer Society's Lovelace Medal,R&D Magazine's Innovator of the Year and honorary doctorates from the University of Canterbury, New Zealand and CINVESTAV, Mexico. He co-founded Univa Inc., a company established to deliver Grid and Cloud computing solutions.
The award, which includes a $10,000 honorarium, will be presented at the Computer Society's 2011 awards dinner on May 25, 2011 in Albuquerque, New Mexico.