ACM and Infosys Foundation Cite Network Pioneer for Revolutionary Advances in Web Search Techniques
Kleinberg’s use of mathematical models to illuminate search and social networking tools that underpin today’s social structure has created interest in computing from people not formerly drawn to this field. The ACM-Infosys Foundation Award http://awards.acm.org/homepage.cfm?awd=165 , established in
“Professor Kleinberg’s achievements mark him as a founder and leader of social network analysis in computer science,” said Dame
Kleinberg was cited for his work on the use of link analysis, a search technique that ranks the absolute number as well as the most relevant, trusted sources of pages linked to a Web search query. Using this approach, Kleinberg authored an influential algorithm that rates Web pages for their links to other pages (known as hubs) as well as the links they receive (known as authorities). This Hubs and Authorities algorithm along with Google’s PageRank algorithm appeared at a time when Web search techniques were based on keyword indexing. Together, this work revealed a basic relationship between network structure and information that fundamentally changed the direction of research and commercial activity on the Web.
Now in its second year, the ACM-Infosys Foundation Award recognizes young researchers who are currently making sizeable contributions to their fields and furthering computer science innovation. The goal is to identify scientifically sound breakthrough research with potentially broad implications, and encourage the recipients to further their research.
S. Gopalakrishnan, CEO and Managing Director, Infosys Technologies said, “We are especially proud to honor
Six Degrees of Separation
The small-world experiment of social psychologist
Kleinberg developed a model to predict an optimal way in which social connections could be distributed for the network to guide messages between distant pairs of people. This model was validated by subsequent research on large social-networking sites, revealing how virtual connections tend to link people who are close in geographic and other dimensions. Kleinberg’s work has had a direct effect on the design of peer-to-peer systems and on Web crawling techniques that methodically browse the Web and index downloaded pages to provide faster searches.
As the Web grew, Kleinberg observed that it was developing a “time axis” – a dimension that reflected both a vast virtual library as well as a rapidly evolving repository of information. To determine how different topics and ideas evolve, Kleinberg created search techniques that track words and phrases that “burst” or jump in frequency over time, revealing when different topics are active. His current research on meme-tracking and the news cycle employs a version of this approach, using words and phrases as quotes appearing in news articles and blog posts. This process automated efforts to spread ideas through word of mouth. Among its varied impacts is the ability to know how different stories compete for news coverage each day, and how certain stories persist while others fade quickly.
A Noted Professor
Kleinberg, dubbed the “Rebel King” by students at
A highly successful class that is being adopted by other institutions in the U.S. and abroad, the Networks course drew 350 students representing 30 disciplines this semester, and has helped to redefine educational programs in the Information Sciences worldwide. A book based on this course is scheduled for publication in the spring of 2010 by
In 2005, Kleinberg was named a MacArthur Fellow. He was awarded the Nevanlinna Mathematics Prize in 2006, and in 2008, he was named one of the “20 best brains under 40″ by Discover Magazine. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
Kleinberg received an A.B. in computer science and mathematics from
ACM will present the ACM-Infosys Foundation Award at the annual ACM Awards Banquet on
ACM, the Association for Computing Machinery www.acm.org, is the world’s largest educational and scientific computing society, uniting computing educators, researchers and professionals to inspire dialogue, share resources and address the field’s challenges. ACM strengthens the computing profession’s collective voice through strong leadership, promotion of the highest standards, and recognition of technical excellence. ACM supports the professional growth of its members by providing opportunities for life-long learning, career development, and professional networking.
About The Infosys Foundation
Established in 1996, the Infosys Foundation is the philanthropic arm of Infosys Technologies Ltd. and has the sole objective of fulfilling the social responsibility of the company by creating opportunities and working toward a more equitable society. The Infosys Foundation has made effective strides in the areas of healthcare, education, social rehabilitation, and the arts. The company contributes up to one percent of its profit to the foundation each year.
About Infosys Technologies
Infosys (Nasdaq: INFY) defines, designs and delivers IT-enabled business solutions that help Global 2000 companies win in a Flat World. These solutions focus on providing strategic differentiation and operational superiority to clients. With Infosys, clients are assured of a transparent business partner, world-class processes, speed of execution and the power to stretch their IT budget by leveraging the Global Delivery Model that Infosys pioneered. Infosys has over 104,000 employees in over 50 offices worldwide. Infosys is part of the NASDAQ-100 Index and The Global Dow. For more information, visit www.infosys.com