flickr-free-ic3d pan white

Dr. James Case - University of Utah (1970)

Multi-core Optimization, Rapid Supercomputer Implementation

and Remembering a Pioneer


by By James Bagley


"One of my favorite professors at the University of Utah was Dr. James Case, who pioneered in the science of parallel computing, and envisioned machines like the Coates Cluster. He even developed programming techniques to take advantage of such systems. That was over 40 years ago in the late 1960s. Dr. Case died unexpectedly at a relatively young age in 1990, just when advances in neural network hardware development were beginning to take advantage of his well-developed processes and research into artificial intelligence.


We were able to track down the granddaughter of Dr. Case, Amber Case, who is specializing in the field of cyborg anthropology. The field specifically analyzes interaction between humans and machines. Amber is the daughter of Elliot Case, an accomplished scientist and inventor in the field of acoustics, with upwards of 50 patents.


"I grew up thinking that everyone had a laboratory in their basement," says Amber, bemused. Already an expert mathematician and electronics technologist by high school, Amber studied Sociology and Anthropology at Lewis and Clark College. "I could make machines do anything, but had trouble communicating with people, so I wanted to work in the social sciences for my undergraduate degree."


She remembers Dr. Case as an incredibly fun person, who would build exotic and beautifully engineered kites and loved to spend weekends with his family. She also was, as a prodigy, amazed by his works dating to the 1960s.


"I remember reading his papers on three-dimensional processing when I was in high school, and thinking that he was at least 50 years ahead of his time."


We are confident that Amber, who wants to continue her post-graduate work at MIT, will carry on the family's tradition of technology advancement".


2 faves
Taken on April 20, 2010