Sally Floyd Wins 2007 SIGCOMM Award

Sally Floyd of the Networking Group has been awarded the 2007 SIGCOMM Award. This award is widely recognized as the most prestigious award given to a scientist working in computer networking. (Another ICSI scientist, Scott Shenker, won this award in 2002.)

Floyd has been previously recognized as winner of the IEEE Internet Award as well as the Outstanding Alumna Award from UC Berkeley. The following is excerpted from a news email distributed by ACM:

The ACM Special Interest Group on Data Communications (ACM SIGCOMM) will present its highest honor to Dr. Sally Floyd for her far-reaching contributions to Internet architecture and her work in identifying practical ways to control and stabilize Internet congestion. Dr. Floyd, a research scientist at the International Computer Science Institute (ICSI) Center for Internet Research in Berkeley, CA, is a leading authority on the mechanisms that allow the resources of a network to be shared efficiently and effectively. She received the 2007 SIGCOMM Award at the SIGCOMM annual conference on August 28th, in Kyoto, Japan.

Dr. Floyd was instrumental in providing the Internet community with a solid foundation for network simulation by developing the ns simulator with Steve McCanne. Prior to ns, the evaluation of network designs was often primitive; today simulation is a widely used tool. In a hallmark of her rigor, Dr. Floyd clearly articulated the limitations of simulation in her paper entitled "Difficulties in Simulating the Internet" co-written with Vern Paxson. This research was awarded the IEEE Communication Society's William R. Bennett Prize Paper Award.

A renowned expert in Internet congestion control, Dr. Floyd proposed elegant and practical mechanisms to achieve congestion control. She has taken her ideas from theory to practice by long-standing involvement in the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), the international community of network designers, operators, vendors, and researchers concerned with the evolution and smooth operation of the Internet.

Dr. Floyd's most well-known contribution to congestion control is the design of Random Early Decision (RED), which founded the field of Active Queue Management (AQM), developed with Van Jacobson. RED, or some closely-related AQM variant, is implemented in almost all commercially available routers, the devices that determine the proper path for data to travel between different networks.

Dr. Floyd has combined the community spirit and dedication that was present in the early Internet with the intellectual rigor that characterizes today's research community. According to CiteSeer, the search engine and digital library for scientific and academic papers, she is the eighth most highly cited researcher in all of computer science. Yet she has also played a crucial role on the Internet Advisory Board and been instrumental in advancing congestion control standards.