Systems Research -- Construed Broadly
Once upon a time, Computer Systems was a broad field encompassing everything from hardware to software. The incredible growth and success that our field has experienced over the past half a century has had the side effect of transforming systems into a constellation of siloed fields. I'm going to make the case that we should return to a broad interpretation of systems, undertake bolder, higher risk projects, and be intentional about how we interact with other fields. I'll support the case with examples of several research projects that embody this approach.
Margo Seltzer is the Canada 150 Research Chair in Computer Systems and the Cheriton Family chair in Computer Science at the University of British Columbia. Her research interests are in systems, construed quite broadly: systems for capturing and accessing data provenance, file systems, databases, transaction processing systems, storage and analysis of graph-structured data, new architectures for parallelizing execution, and systems that apply technology to problems in healthcare. Dr. Seltzer was a co-founder and CTO of Sleepycat Software, the makers of Berkeley DB and is now an Architect for Oracle Corporation. She serves on the Computer Science and Telecommunications Board (CSTB) of the (US) National Academies. She is recognized as an outstanding teacher and mentor, having received the Phi Beta Kappa teaching award in 1996, the Abrahmson Teaching Award in 1999, the Capers and Marion McDonald Award for Excellence in Mentoring and Advising in 2010, and the CRA-E Undergraduate Research Mentoring Award in 2017.