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Clarkson University Captures First And Second Place In Linux Technology Competition

Clarkson University graduate students Todd M. DeShane and Patricia A. Jablonski recently won a contest that allowed them to show that Clarkson is on top of their game when it comes to Linux, and that the University is on the forefront of Linux development technology.

The winning project of DeShane and Jablonski targets the need for a collection of tools to manage large structured sets of persistently accessed data, offering users speed and ease of use when accessing the information. To achieve their goal, the team implemented a system that allowed them to search a large amount of data, and then make each subsequent search faster and easier to perform based on the results of previous queries. Calls for such a program might come from places such as the U.S. Government when sorting census and demographic data, scientific projects such as monitoring NASA flight data and the Human Genome Project, and large companies like FedEx and UPS that have immense amounts of data stored to track packages.

As reward for their efforts, each student on the first- and second-place team will receive Sony’s new PSP gaming unit and an Apple iPod. DeShane and Jablonski will also receive a new Dell PC, while the University gets a Unisys-built 8x Itanium 2 ES7000 series server for use in future Linux development, valued at approximately $70,000. Unisys Corporation also provided airfare, hotel accommodations, and Expo passes for Jeanna N. Matthews, professor of Computer Science at Clarkson University and faculty advisor; Jablonski; and DeShane to attend an award ceremony at Linux World Expo in San Francisco August 8 – 11.

This is not the first time Clarkson students have won an award for Linux development either. Clarkson students have had great success in other computing competitions including winners in the 2001 and 2004 IBM Scholars Challenge and the 2005 IBM North American Grid Scholars Challenge. Of the 65 winners in the three-year history of IBM’s Linux Scholars Challenge, only 13 have come from the United States. Four of these winners are from Clarkson. In the first Linux Scholars Challenge, Clarkson also won the overall university prize, a z800 series e-server, valued at approximately $250,000. In total, Matthews has advised seven winning entries involving 12 students from Clarkson in computing competitions since 2001.

“The achievement of our teams finishing first and second in the competition is really remarkable,” commented Matthews. “Along with the other awards we have received in recent years, it sends a message around the world that Clarkson is at the head of its class in Linux development.”

[News directors and editors: For more information, contact Annie Harrison, Director of Media Relations, at 315-268-6764 or]

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