ERC grant awarded to cloud computing researcher
Scientists engaged in frontier research, whether it is physical or biological sciences, or humanities and engineering, get major support from the EU through European Research Council (ERC) funding. A recent winner of an ERC Advanced Grant is Professor Ermira Mezini, a computer scientist at the Technische Universität Darmstadt in Germany, who will investigate new programming concepts that could help researchers face the challenges triggered by cloud computing, which is the practice of using a network of remote severs hosted on the Internet to store, manage and process data. Professor Mezini has received EUR 2.3 million in funding.
'Dealing with the cloud's, in principle, unlimited computing power and data-storage capacity, along with the vision of software that will be residing there and available in the form of a jointly used service that will, nevertheless, be customisable to suit the individual needs of numerous users, confronts the field of software programming with totally new challenges,' said Professor Mezini.
'For example, in order to be able to model and process the large quantities of data and numbers of events involved and their interrelations we will need totally new software-programming mechanisms and architectures. Otherwise, the complexities of the software systems involved and their development and maintenance will become unmanageable, which will have highly adverse consequences for their stabilities and susceptibilities to errors and security loopholes.'
Professor Mezini's research will be conducted through the PACE ('Programming abstractions for applications in cloud environments') project, which is due to begin in March 2013 and will end in February 2018. Together with PACE, she will expand her research group by adding a team of seven researchers who will work out the theoretical bases involved, and formulate and evaluate prototypes of the new programming concepts developed.
The PACE team aims to bring optimal linguistic abstractions for expressing sophisticated correlations between data events that will be used as primitives to express high-level functionality. Programmers will benefit most from these developments because they will not have to micromanage data events. Users could improve their understanding and maintenance of applications, and they could deliver language concepts for large-scale modularity, extensibility and adaptability to obtain highly polymorphic software services.
Professor Mezini has studied and worked in Albania, Germany and the United States. Her research has focused on programming languages, intelligent software-development environments, modular software architectures and software security. She is the first female German computer scientist to receive an ERC grant.
The first ERC grants were given in 2007.
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Data Source Provider: TU Darmstadt
Document Reference: Based on information from TU Darmstadt
Subject Index: Coordination, Cooperation; Information and communication technology applications ; Scientific Research; Social Aspects