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Agarwal named CSAIL director

Succeeds Zue to lead the Institute’s largest interdisciplinary lab
Anant Agarwal, the new director of MIT's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory.
Anant Agarwal, the new director of MIT's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory.

Anant Agarwal, a professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, has been named the next director MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL).

Agarwal succeeds Victor Zue, who served four years as CSAIL’s director, four years as the lab’s co-director and two years as the director of the Laboratory for Computer Science, a predecessor to CSAIL. Agarwal’s appointment is effective July 1.

CSAIL is MIT’s largest interdepartmental laboratory, with 900 members and more than 100 principal investigators coming from eight departments. School of Engineering Dean Ian Waitz, in a letter to the CSAIL community, looked forward to Agarwal’s “vision and enthusiasm as he takes on this important leadership role.”

Agarwal is currently the leader of the Carbon Research Group at CSAIL, which is dedicated to researching and developing operating systems and architectures for multicore and cloud computing. Currently, he leads Project Angstrom, a multidisciplinary research endeavor uniting scientists from top universities and industry collaborators in an effort to develop a new multicore system and computational model for exascale computing. Agarwal is a founder and chief technology officer of Tilera Corporation, where the Tile multicore processor was created. Additionally, he led the development of Raw, an early 16-core tiled multicore processor; Alewife, a scalable multiprocessor; and the VirtualWires project at MIT. Agarwal founded Virtual Machine Works, which was responsible for bringing VirtualWires technology to market.

Agarwal received his doctorate from Stanford University and his bachelor’s degree from the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras.

CSAIL includes approximately 50 research groups organized into three focus areas: artificial intelligence, systems and theory. Each group is composed of faculty principal investigators; graduate and undergraduate students and postdocs; and research staff.

The research groups are supported by grants from U.S. government agencies such as the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, NASA, the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation and others; as well as international corporate sponsors such as Boeing, Cisco, DuPont, Microsoft, Nokia, NTT, Pfizer, Quanta, SAP, Shell and Toyota.

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