Past and Future Share Spotlight at CS Fifty

Computer Science Department Celebrates 50th Anniversary

Tuesday, October 13, 2015 - by Byron Spice

The Computer Science Department will celebrate its 50th anniversary Oct. 23–24.

Even when Carnegie Mellon computer scientists look back, they're still looking forward.

So when faculty, students and alumni gather Oct. 23–24 for CS Fifty — the 50th anniversary of the Computer Science Department — expect visions of the future of computing to be as common as reminiscences.

Anita Jones, a former director of Defense Research and Engineering, and Michael "Fuzzy" Mauldin, developer of the Lycos search engine, are among the distinguished alumni who will return to campus for the celebration.

A long list of faculty members will share their predictions about where computer science is headed in the next 50 years during the two-day program in Rashid Auditorium. The fate of Moore's law, the prospect of intelligent agents, notions for strategically steering biological adaptation, preparations for the singularity and contemplations of whether social computers dream are among the thought-provoking talks on the schedule.

It all begins on the morning of Oct. 23 with a panel of former CSD heads — John McDermott, Raj Reddy, Jim Morris, Randy Bryant, Jeannette Wing and Peter Lee, along with Pamela McCorduck, representing her late husband, Joe Traub — probing their memory banks under the guidance of current CSD Head Frank Pfenning.

The remainder of the day includes a number of alumni talks by Jones, Mauldin, Yolanda Gil, Jay Kistler, Peter Brown, Jim Baker and Alex Waibel. Beginning that afternoon and continuing through the morning of Oct. 24, faculty members including David Garlan, Dan Siewiorek, Kathleen Carley, Guy Blelloch and Mary Shaw will share their predictions for what the next 50 years hold for CSD and computer science.

Alumnus Scott Dietzen, a serial entrepreneur and current CEO at Pure Storage, will be the featured speaker at the CS Fifty dinner Oct. 23 at the Omni William Penn Hotel.

For more information, Contact:
Byron Spice | 412-268-9068 |