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JACOB T. SCHWARTZ

1930–2009


Elected in 2000


“For contributions to the theory and practice of programming language design, compiler technology, and parallel computation.”


BY BUD MISHRA

SUBMITTED BY THE NAE HOME SECRETARY


JACOB T. SCHWARTZ, a mathematician and computer scientist from New York University’s (NYU) Courant Institute and a polymath with pioneering and seminal contributions to a wide spectrum of subjects ranging from pure mathematics to applied engineering, died on March 2, 2009, at the age of 79.

Jack founded NYU’s Department of Computer Science, chairing it from 1964 to 1980 and headed DARPA’s (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) IPTO (Information Processing and Techniques Office) program from 1987 to 1989. He was the designer of the SETL programming language; the NYU Ultracomputer; the NYU Four-Finger Manipulator robot; a novel multimedia visualizer, the Fractal Computer User Centerface; and COMBAT, a whole genome sequence comparison tool.

Jack’s research interests were wide ranging: the theory of linear operators, von Neumann algebras, quantum field theory, theory of money, time sharing, parallel computing, programming language design and implementation, motion planning for robots, dexterous manipulation and grasping with robot hands, set-theoretic approaches in computational logic, proof and program verification systems, multimedia authoring



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