RISE Seminar 12/6/19: The Pit and the Pendulum, a talk by Lorenzo Alvisi

December 6, 2019

Title: The Pit and the Pendulum
Speaker: Lorenzo Alvisi (Cornell)
Date and location: Friday, December 6, 11 – 12 pm, Wozniak Lounge
Abstract: Since the elegant foundations of transaction processing were established in the mid 70’s with the notion of serializability and the codification of the ACID (Atomicity, Consistency, Isolation, Durability) paradigm, performance has not been considered one of ACID’s strong suits, especially for distributed data stores. Indeed, the NoSQL/BASE movement of the last decade was born out of frustration with the limited scalability of traditional ACID solutions, only to become itself a source of frustration once the challenges of programming applications in this new paradigm began to sink in.  But how fundamental is this dichotomy between performance and ease of programming? In this talk, I will share what my students and I have recently learned while trying to overcome the traditional terms of this classic tradeoff.
Bio: Lorenzo Alvisi is the Tisch University Professor of Computer Science at Cornell University. Prior to joining Cornell, he held an endowed professorship at UT Austin, where he is now a Distinguished Professor Emeritus. Lorenzo received his Ph.D. in 1996 from Cornell, after earning a Laurea cum Laude in Physics from the University of Bologna. His research interests are in the theory and practice of distributed computing. He is a Fellow of the ACM and IEEE, an Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Fellow, and the recipient of a Humboldt Research Award, an NSF Career Award, and several teaching awards. He serves on the editorial boards of ACM TOCS and Springer’s Distributed Computing. In addition to distributed computing, he is passionate about classical music and red Italian motorcycles.