Burton Smith

Burton Smith comes to Microsoft as a Technical Fellow. He is a proven computer industry leader; he will focus on working with existing groups within Microsoft to help expand the company’s efforts in parallel and high-performance computing. He reports directly to Craig Mundie, chief technical officer and senior vice president for Advanced Strategies and Policy. “As microprocessor technology continues to evolve over the next decade or so, we’re going to see the capabilities of a supercomputer cluster on the desktop which will require a different software architecture,” Mundie said. “Burton will be investigating how to develop software to benefit from the opportunities which multi-core multiprocessors will present.” Smith is recognized as an international leader in high-performance computer architecture and programming languages for parallel computers. Before joining Microsoft, he worked at Cray, Inc. (formerly Tera Computer Co.) as chief scientist and a member of the Board of Directors from its inception in 1988 to the present. He served as Chairman from 1988 to 1999. Before founding Tera Computer Co. in 1988, Smith spent six years with Denelcor Inc. and three years with the Institute for Defense Analyses. From 1970 to 1979 he taught at the University of Colorado at Denver and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Smith also has published numerous documents on parallel computing issues. In 2003, Smith was honored with the Seymour Cray Computer Engineering Award from the IEEE Computer Society and was elected to the National Academy of Engineering. In 1991 he received the Eckert-Mauchly Award, which is given jointly by the Institute for Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and the Association for Computing Machinery. He was elected a fellow of each organization in 1994. Smith is on the review committee for the Los Alamos National Laboratory Computer and Computational Sciences Division and on the advisory committee for the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory Computational Science and Engineering Division.