Ymir Vigfusson (Reykjavik University)
Code breakers played an enormously crucial role in World War II. Alan Turing, the father of computer science, was at the center of allied code breaking operations and his breakthroughs made intelligence gathering not only possible but practical. This general audience talk, celebrating Alan Turing's Centenary, explains the notorious German Enigma code and how it was systematically cracked by the Allies.
Ymir Vigfusson is an Assistant Professor at the School of Computer Science at Reykjavik University. He received a B.Sc. in Mathematics from the University of Iceland (2005) and a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Cornell University (2009), where he researched ways to exploit group similarity and improve scalability in distributed systems. His dissertation was nominated for the ACM Doctoral Dissertation Award by Cornell. Before his appointment at Reykjavik University, Ymir was a post-doctoral scientist at IBM Research Haifa (2009-2011). Ymir's research projects include creating and optimizing systems and algorithms for distributed settings, and getting multicast and content distribution to work in a variety of environments. His work has been partially supported by a Fulbright Scholarship, a Yahoo! Research grant and a Grant-of-Excellence from the Icelandic Research Centre. In his spare time, Ymir plays the piano, dances ballroom and flies small .