EECS Joint Colloquium Distinguished Lecture Series

Wednesday, October 23, 2002
Hewlett Packard Auditorium, 306 Soda Hall
4:00-5:00 p.m.

Dr. Tom Leighton

Akamai Technologies and Professor, Applied Mathematics, MIT


The Challenges of Delivering Content and Applications On the Internet




In this talk, we will give an overview of how content and applications are distributed on the internet, with an emphasis on the approaches being used by Akamai. We will describe some of the technical challenges involved in operating a distributed computing platform with thousands of servers across multiple geographies on behalf of thousands of customers.


Tom Leighton founded Akamai in September 1998 with Danny Lewin and a leading group of Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) scientists and business professionals. As chief scientist, Dr. Leighton is Akamai's technology visionary as well as a key member of the executive team setting the company's direction.

Dr. Leighton is one of the world's pre-eminent authorities on algorithms for network applications. A professor of Applied Mathematics at MIT, he has served as the Head of the Algorithms Group in MIT's Laboratory for Computer Science since its inception in 1996.

Dr. Leighton holds numerous patents involving cryptography, digital rights management, and algorithms for networks -- many of which have been licensed or sold to major corporations. During the course of his career, he has served on dozens of government, industrial, and academic review committees; program committees; and editorial boards. He is a former two-term chair of the 2,000-member Association of Computing Machinery Special Interest Group on Algorithms and Complexity Theory, and a former two-term editor-in-chief of the Journal of the ACM, the nation's premier journal for computer science research.

Dr. Leighton has published more than 100 research papers, and his leading text on parallel algorithms and architectures has been translated into several languages. He graduated summa cum laude from Princeton University with a B.S. in engineering and received his Ph.D. in mathematics from MIT.