Michael Mitzenmacher

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Michael Mitzenmacher
Alma materUniversity of California, Berkeley
AwardsACM Fellow (2014)
Scientific career
InstitutionsHarvard University
Doctoral advisorAlistair Sinclair

Michael David Mitzenmacher is an American computer scientist working in algorithms. He is professor of computer science in the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences at Harvard University and was area dean of computer science July 2010 to June 2013. He also runs My Biased Coin, a blog about theoretical computer science.


In 1986, Mitzenmacher attended the Research Science Institute. Mitzenmacher got his B.A. at Harvard, where he won the 1990 North American Collegiate Bridge Championship under the captaincy of Bill Cole (the character Michaela Mitzenlecker Fishhead in Cole's 1991 novel Fishheads is based on Mitzenmacher.) He attended the University of Cambridge on a Churchill Scholarship from 1991-1992. He received his Ph.D. in computer science at the University of California, Berkeley in 1996 under the supervision of Alistair Sinclair.[1] He joined Harvard University in 1999.[2]


Mitzenmacher’s research covers the design an analysis of randomised algorithms and processes. With Eli Upfal he is the author of a textbook Mitzenmacher & Upfal (2005) on randomized algorithms and probabilistic techniques in computer science. His Ph.D. thesis was on the analysis of simple randomised load balancing schemes. He is an expert in hash function applications such as Bloom filters,[3] cuckoo hashing,[4] and locality-sensitive hashing. His work on min-wise independence gives a fast way to estimate similarity of electronic documents, and is used in internet search engines.[5] Mitzenmacher has also worked on erasure codes and error-correcting codes.

Mitzenmacher has written over 100 conference and journal publications. He has served on dozens of programme committees in computer science, information theory, and networks, and chaired the programme committee of the Symposium on Theory of Computing in 2009. He belongs to the editorial board of SIAM Journal on Computing, Internet Mathematics, and Journal of Interconnection Networks.

Awards and honors[edit]

Mitzenmacher became a fellow of the Association for Computing Machinery in 2014.[6] His joint paper (Luby et al. 2001) on low-density parity-check codes received the 2002 IEEE Information Theory Society Best Paper Award. His joint paper (Byers et al. 1998) on fountain codes received the 2009 ACM SIGCOMM Test of Time Paper Award.[7]

Selected publications[edit]

  • Mitzenmacher, Michael; Upfal, Eli (2005), Probability and Computing: Randomized Algorithms and Probabilistic Analysis, Cambridge University Press
  • Byers, John; Luby, Michael; Mitzenmacher, Michael; Rege, Ashutosh (1998), "A Digital Fountain Approach to Reliable Distribution of Bulk Data", Proc. of ACM SIGCOMM 1998
  • Broder, Andrei; Mitzenmacher, Michael (2005), "Network Applications of Bloom Filters: A Survey" (PDF), Internet Mathematics, 1 (4): 485–509, doi:10.1080/15427951.2004.10129096
  • Luby, Michael; Mitzenmacher, Michael; Shokrollahi, Amin; Spielman, Daniel (2001), "Improved Low-Density Parity Check Codes Using Irregular Graphs", IEEE Transactions on Information Theory, 47 (2): 585–598, doi:10.1109/18.910576
  • Mitzenmacher, Michael (2009), "Some Open Questions Related to Cuckoo Hashing", Algorithms - ESA 2009, 17th Annual European Symposium, Copenhagen, Denmark, September 7–9, 2009 (PDF), Lecture Notes in Computer Science, Springer, pp. 1–10, doi:10.1007/978-3-642-04128-0_1


External links[edit]