June 25, 2006: Professors Prasad Sistla and Clement Yu named University Scholars

Computer Science Professors Prasad Sistla and Clement Yu have been named 2006 University of Illinois Scholars. University Scholars receive grants of $10,000 per year for three years to support their scholarly activities.

Professor Sistla is internationally recognized for his research contributions in the areas of formal methods for concurrent systems, databases, distributed systems and security. His work in the area of formal methods has dealt with various issues that are of primary importance in the design, development and verification of correct, reliable, concurrent systems. Professor Sistla's work in this area has been pioneering. He is one of three co-founders of the computer science subfield of using model checking for the verification of concurrent systems. Professor Sistla published the first papers in this area with Ed Clarke (CMU) and Allen Emerson (UT) introducing the model checking based approach (published in ACM Trans. on Programming Languages and Systems, 1986; 1983 ACM POPL Conference). This work used the branching time temporal logic CTL for verification. Model checking is now considered one of the important practical methods for checking correctness of hardware systems. The techniques developed by Professor Sistla and his collaborators are used around in the world in leading companies such as Intel and Cadence.

Professor Yu is known internationally for his computer science research in database and information retrieval. Examples of Professor Yu's many noteworthy research accomplishments include a paper to determine the membership of a query (tree or cyclic query) known as the GYO reduction in the database literature ("Y" in "GYO" stands for Yu; "O" stands for Ozsoyuglu, a former student of the Professor Yu) and a process to linearize non-linear recursive rules that is referred to as ZYT linearization in the database literature ("Y" in "ZYT" stands for Yu; "Z" and "T" stand for Zhang and Troy, former students of Professor Yu. Professor Yu has recently co-founded two companies, Webscalers and PharmIR. Webscalers is a meta-search engine company which attempts to cover the entire Web. The Web is estimated to have more than 500 billion pages, while Google indexes only 8 billion pages. It received NSF SBIR phase 1 and phase 2 funding. PharmIR is a company that applies information retrieval techniques to the pharmacy domain. It is likely to expand to other health care areas. It has received NIH SBIR phase 1 funding.

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