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Distinguished Lecture

Google: A Meandering Behind-the-Scenes Tour

Jeff DeanGoogle, Inc.

Search is one of the most important applications used on the internet, but it also poses some of the most interesting challenges in computer science. Providing high-quality search requires understanding across a wide range of computer science disciplines, from lower-level systems areas like computer architecture and distributed systems to applied areas like information retrieval, machine learning, data mining, and user interface design. In this talk I'll describe some of the challenges in these areas, discuss some of the interesting applications related to search that Google has developed over the past few years, and I'll highlight some of the behind-the-scenes software infrastructure that we've built in order to operate Google's services. Along the way, I'll discuss various interesting attributes of Google's approach to engineering and software development.
Jeff Dean joined Google in 1999 and is currently a Google Fellow in Google's Systems Infrastructure Group. While at Google he has worked on Google's crawling, indexing, query serving, and advertising systems, implemented several search quality improvements, and built various pieces of Google's distributed computing infrastructure. Prior to joining Google, he was at DEC/Compaq's Western Research Laboratory, where he worked on profiling tools, microprocessor architecture, and information retrieval. From 1990 to 1991, he worked for the World Health Organization's Global Program on AIDS, developing software to do statistical modeling, forecasting, and analysis of the HIV pandemic. He received a Ph.D. in computer science from the University of Washington in 1996 and a B.S. in computer science and economics, summa cum laude, from the University of Minnesota in 1990.

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