Google: Web search and Research. Google was already a success when I
arrived in 2001, so most of the credit goes to those who were there
before me. But as Director of Search Quality from 2002-2005 it was my
responsibility to maintain and improve the quality of our core web search
algorithms during a time of twenty-fold growth and increased scrutiny from
webmasters, the public, and the press. Throughout this all, Google
has maintained the lead over all competitors. As Director of Research
(in 2005) I oversaw the world's top Machine
Translation team and am helped to build top groups in speech
understanding and other areas. You can see a CACM article
on our approach to research.
Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach. With
Stuart Russell, co-author of what has been the leading textbook in AI
since 1995, with over 200,000 copies sold and over 15,000 citations.
At CiteSeer, it is 22nd most-cited computer science publication.
NASA: Remote Agent and Mars Exploration Rovers. My
division developed the Remote Agent
experiment that flew on the Deep Space 1 spacecraft. This
was the first use of autonomous planning, scheduling, and fault
identification onboard a spacecraft. It won the 1999 NASA Software of
the Year award and was cited in two AAAI Presidential addresses (by
Nils Nilsson and by Ron Brachman) as one of the top achievements in
the history of AI. The Remote Agent also served as a proving ground
for some of the automated planning software that my team brought to
the tremendously succesful Mars Exploration
Rovers, or MER (which flew after I left NASA).
I also served as the only computer scientist on both investigation
boards for the two failed Mars '98 missions. President Clinton commented
on these boards that "I think the important thing is that, from our
point of view, NASA responded in an honest, up-front way to their
difficulties with the two Mars probes that didn't work so well ...
and I would like to see their budget increase now." The
investigation boards may or may not have been a cause for the
succesful MER missions, but they were certainly a prerequisite.
Junglee: Comparison ads and shopping site. I was
employee #8 at Junglee, one of the first web metasearch sites for
classified ads and shopping. I was responsible for maintaining the
algorithms, dictionaries and grammar rules for text-based extraction.
I then co-led a small team that produced a second-generation
development environment (in Java instead of Perl), and built the
shopping tool that became the Yahoo Shopping site,
and thereafter Junglee's most important product line, prior to
our acquisition by Amazon.com.
Paradigms of AI Programming. This book has been called"The best book on programming ever written".
That is a subjective opinion (and I for one would disagree), but there seems to be a consensus that this is one of the 3 or 4 top
books on Lisp programming.
Open source software. In addition to the commercial software I've
helped develop at Google, Junglee, and elsewhere, I've also donated open
source software that has had an impact:
I developed JScheme (nee SILK), a Scheme implemented in Java, that has been used by
students and many professionals. Tim Hickey and the late Ken Anderson took over most of
the development after the initial versions.