Melanie Kambadur

  • PHD Student
    Columbia University
    Attended ASPLOS
    2015, Istanbul, Turkey

Attending ASPLOS 2015 was a wonderful experience. The conference, which is at the intersection of Computer Architecture, Programming Languages, and Operating Systems, focused this year on the themes of security, warehouse scale computing, approximate computing, memory and reliability, and energy efficiency. Since I have done research in a few of these areas before, I found many of the talks to be both highly relevant and fascinating. I particularly enjoyed the WACI (“wild and crazy ideas”) session where researchers talked about their half-formed research ideas, and the poster session, where I got to exchange research ideas with other PhD students.

Beyond the academic content of the conference, I also had lots of conversations (both personal and work related) with the other attendees. For example, a few senior professors and researchers encouraged me to apply to their universities and work places and gave me job-hunting advice. Several assistant professors told me about their experiences as new professors, and a senior PhD student told me about his recent job-hunting experience. A few younger PhDs and I discussed how we come up with research ideas, and how we plan to choose a career after graduation. I came away from the conference feeling more connected and known to the community, and with some added clarity about what kind of career I would like to pursue.