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Larry Smarr
personalized medicine supercomputer supercomputers

1. Introduction

Larry Lee Smarr is a physicist and leader in scientific computing, supercomputer applications, and Internet infrastructure at the University of California, San Diego.[1][2][3][4][5][6][7][8][9][10][11] Smarr has been among the most important synthesizers and conductors of innovation, discovery, and commercialization of new technologies — including areas as disparate as the Web browser and personalized medicine.[12] In his career, Smarr has made pioneering breakthroughs in research on black holes, spearheaded the use of supercomputers for academic research, and presided over some of the major innovations that created the modern Internet. For nearly 20 years, he has been building a new model for academic research based on interdisciplinary collaboration.

2. Education

Smarr received his Bachelor of Arts and Master of Science degrees from the University of Missouri in Columbia, Missouri and received a Ph.D. in physics from the University of Texas at Austin in 1975.

3. Research

After graduating, Smarr did research at Princeton, Yale, and Harvard,[13][14] and then joined the faculty of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1979. He is a Professor of Computer Science and Information Technologies at the University of California, San Diego.

While at Illinois Smarr wrote an ambitious proposal to address the future needs of scientific research. Seven other University of Illinois professors joined as co-Principal Investigators, and many others provided descriptions of what could be accomplished if the proposal were accepted. Formally titled A Center for Scientific and Engineering Supercomputing but known as the Black Proposal (after the color of its cover), it was submitted to the National Science Foundation in 1983.[15] A scant 10 pages long, it was the first unsolicited proposal accepted and approved by the NSF, and resulted in the charter of four supercomputer centers (Cornell, Illinois, Princeton, and San Diego), with a fifth (Pittsburgh) added later. In 1985 Smarr became the first director of the Illinois center, the National Center for Supercomputing Applications.

Smarr continued to promote the benefits of technological innovation to scientific research, such as his advocacy of a high-speed network linking the national centers, which became the NSFnet, one of the significant predecessors of today's Internet. When the NSF revised its funding of supercomputer centers in 1997, Smarr became director of the National Computational Science Alliance, linking dozens of universities and research labs with NCSA to prototype the concept of grid computing.

In 2000, Smarr moved to California and proposed the creation of the California Institute for Telecommunications and Information Technology (Calit2), linking departments and researchers at UCSD and UC Irvine. Smarr serves as Institute Director of Calit2.

As part of the work of Calit2, he is Principal Investigator on the NSF OptIPuter[16] LambdaGrid project, an "optical backplane for planetary scale distributed computing" and the CAMERA Project,[17] a high-performance computing resource for genomic research.[18][19]

He attended the Beyond Belief symposium on November 2006 and presented at the 2010 and 2012 Life Extension Conferences.[20]

As of 2012, Larry Smarr is engaged in a computer-aided study of his own body.[21][22][23][24]

4. Awards and Honors

Smarr has received numerous honors and awards, including:

  • Member of the National Academy of Engineering
  • Fellow of the American Physical Society
  • Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences
  • Franklin Institute's Delmer S. Fahrney Medal for Leadership in Science or Technology (1990)
  • Telluride Tech Festival Award of Technology (2005)
  • Golden Goose Award for his work involving black holes and supercomputering.[25] (2014)
  • Member of the San Diego Science Festival's Nifty Fifty,[26] a collection of the most influential scientists in the San Diego area.[27]
Further Reading
In this part, we encourage you to list the link of papers wrote by the character, or published reviews/articles about his/her academic contributions. Edit


  1. "Grids in Context" in Carl Kesselman; Foster, Ian (2003). The Grid 2: Blueprint for a New Computing Infrastructure. San Diego: Morgan Kaufmann. ISBN 1-55860-933-4. 
  2. Members of the President’s Information Technology Advisory Committee. Information Technology Research: Investing in Our Future, a Report to the President of the United States, 1999.
  3. "Extraterrestrial Computing: Exploring the Universe with a Supercomputer". Chapter 8 of Very large Scale Computation in the 21st Century, Jill P. Mesirov, ed., Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM), 1991.
  4. Larry Smarr. "How Supercomputers are Transforming Science," Encyclopædia Britannica Yearbook, 1991.
  5. Smarr, Larry L.; Kaufmann, William J. (1993). Supercomputing and the transformation of science. New York: Scientific American Library. ISBN 0-7167-5038-4. 
  6. Larry Smarr author profile page at the ACM Digital Library
  7. {{DBLP}} template missing ID and not present in Wikidata.
  8. Internet Pioneers: Dr. Larry Smarr - How the Internet Happened
  9. List of publications from Microsoft Academic
  10. Larry Smarr's publications in Google Scholar
  11. Larry Smarr's publications indexed by the Scopus bibliographic database. (Subscription content?)
  12. "Why Larry Smarr Is Pioneering Collaborative Innovation". 
  13. Smarr, L. (1978). "Kinematical conditions in the construction of spacetime". Physical Review D 17 (10): 2529. doi:10.1103/PhysRevD.17.2529. Bibcode: 1978PhRvD..17.2529S.
  14. Eardley, D.; Smarr, L. (1979). "Time functions in numerical relativity: Marginally bound dust collapse". Physical Review D 19 (8): 2239. doi:10.1103/PhysRevD.19.2239. Bibcode: 1979PhRvD..19.2239E.
  15. Smarr, Larry (1983), A Center for Scientific and Engineering Supercomputing, 
  16. Smarr, L. L.; Chien, A. A.; Defanti, T.; Leigh, J.; Papadopoulos, P. M. (2003). "The OptIPuter". Communications of the ACM 46 (11): 58. doi:10.1145/948383.948410.
  17. Seshadri, R.; Kravitz, S. A.; Smarr, L.; Gilna, P.; Frazier, M. (2007). "CAMERA: A Community Resource for Metagenomics". PLoS Biology 5 (3): e75. doi:10.1371/journal.pbio.0050075. PMID 17355175.
  18. Optiputer: People
  19. CAMERA: People
  20. "Personalized Life Extension Conference 2010 - Program". Archived from the original on 11 October 2010. Retrieved 11 October 2010. 
  21. The Measured Man
  22. "BBC Two - Horizon, 2013-2014, Monitor Me". 
  23. Smarr, L. (2012). "Quantifying your body: A how-to guide from a systems biology perspective". Biotechnology Journal 7 (8): 980–991. doi:10.1002/biot.201100495. PMID 22887886.
  24. "BBC News - Why Professor Larry Smarr freezes his own faeces". 
  25. "Black Holes and Supercomputing". The Golden Goose Award. Retrieved 2015-05-27. 
  27. "San Diego Science Festival Nifty Fifty". San Diego Science Festival. Retrieved 2009-02-18. 
Name: Larry Smarr
Born: Oct 1948
Larry Lee Smarr, US
Title: Physicist
Affiliations: Princeton University Yale University Harvard University University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign University of California, San Diego
Honors: Member of the National Academy of Engineering Fellow of the American Physical Society Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences Delmer S. Fahrney Medal (1990) Golden Goose Award (2014)
Subjects: Others
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Entry Collection: HandWiki
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Update Date: 22 Nov 2022