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VLDB Awards Session

Date: Thu, 8th, September 2016
Time: Time: 9.00 a.m. - 10.30 a.m.
Venue: Pearl

Session Chair: Sunita Sarawagi, IIT Bombay

VLDB 2016 Awards: Best Paper and Best Demonstration awards

Best Paper Award –

Compressed Linear Algebra for Large-Scale Machine Learning
Ahmed Elgohary (University of Maryland), Matthias Boehm (IBM Research - Almaden), Peter Haas (IBM Research), Fred Reiss (IBM Research - Almaden), and Berthold Reinwald (IBM Research, Almaden) for “Proposing a comprehensive solution to the challenge of compressing matrices for linear algebra operations in the context of machine learning tasks”.

VLDB Endowment Awards:

  • VLDB 10-year Best Paper Award –
    The New Casper: Query Processing for Location Services without Compromising Privacy
    Mohamed F. Mokbel, Chi-Yin Chow, Walid G. Aref VLDB 2006 for inspiring research to support privacy in spatial query processing

  • VLDB Early Career Research Contribution Award –
    Xin Luna Dong for advancing the state of the art of knowledge fusion

  • VLDB Women in Database Research Award –
    Magdalena Balazinska for her inspirational research record on scalable distributed data systems

Award Talks

Luna Dong

With the mission "leave no valuable data behind", we developed techniques for knowledge fusion to guarantee the correctness of the knowledge. This talk starts with describing a few crazy ideas we have tested. The first, known as "Knowledge Vault", used 15 extractors to automatically extract knowledge from 1B+ Webpages, obtaining 3B+ distinct (subject, predicate, object) knowledge triples and predicting well-calibrated probabilities for extracted triples. The second, known as "Knowledge-Based Trust", estimated the trustworthiness of 119M webpages and 5.6M websites based on the correctness of their factual information. We then present how we bring the ideas to business in filling the gap between the knowledge at Google Knowledge Graph and the knowledge in the world.

Xin Luna Dong is a Principal Scientist at Amazon, leading the efforts of constructing Amazon Product Graph. She was one of the major contributors to the Knowledge Vault project, and has led the Knowledge-based Trust project, which is called the "Google Truth Machine" by Washington's Post. She has co-authored book "Big Data Integration", published 65+ papers in top conferences and journals, given 20+ keynotes/invited-talks/tutorials, and got the Best Demo award in Sigmod 2005. She is the PC co-chair for Sigmod 2018 and WAIM 2015, and serves as an area chair for Sigmod 2017, Sigmod 2015, ICDE 2013, and CIKM 2011.

Mohamed F. Mokbel, Chi-Yin Chow, Walid G. Aref

In early 2000, we had the vision of ubiquitous location services, where each object is aware of its location, and continuously sends its location to a designated database server. This flood of location data opened the door for a myriad of location-based services that were considered visionary at that time, yet today they are a reality and have become ubiquitous. To realize our early vision, we identified two main challenges that needed to be addressed, namely, scalability and privacy. We have addressed these challenges through two main systems, PLACE and Casper. PLACE, developed at Purdue University from 2000 to 2005, set up the environment for built-in database support of scalable and continuous location-based services. The Casper system, developed at University of Minnesota from 2005 to 2010, was built inside the PLACE server allowing it to provide its high quality scalable service, while maintaining the privacy of its users' locations. This talk will take you through a time journey of location services from 2000 until today, and beyond, highlighting the development efforts of the PLACE and Casper systems, along with their impact on current and future research initiatives in both academia and industry.

Mohamed F. Mokbel (Ph.D., Purdue University, MS, B.Sc., Alexandria University) is an Associate Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering, University of Minnesota. His research interests include the interaction of GIS and location-based services with database systems and cloud computing. His research work has been recognized by five Best Paper Awards and by the NSF CAREER award. Mohamed is/was the program co-chair of SIGMOD 2018, ACM SIGSPATIAL from 2008 to 2010, and IEEE MDM 2011 and 2014. He is an Associate Editor for ACM TODS, ACM TSAS, VLDB journal, and GeoInformatica. Mohamed is currently serving as the elected Chair of ACM SIGSPATIAL 2014-2017. For more information, please visit:

Chi-Yin Chow received the B.A. and M.Phil. degrees from The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong in 2002 and 2005, respectively. He also received the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, USA in 2008 and 2010, respectively. He is currently an assistant professor in Department of Computer Science, City University of Hong Kong. His research interests include big data analytics, data management, GIS, mobile computing, location-based services, and data privacy. He is the co-founder and co-chair of the ACM SIGSPATIAL MobiGIS 2012 to 2016, and the editor of the ACM SIGSPATIAL Newsletter. Dr. Chow received the best paper awards in ICA3PP 2015 and IEEE MDM 2009.

Walid G. Aref is a professor of computer science at Purdue. His research interests are in extending the functionality of database systems in support of emerging applications, e.g., spatial, spatio-temporal, multimedia, biological, and sensor databases. He is also interested in query processing, indexing, data mining, and geographic information systems (GIS). Professor Aref's research has been supported by the National Science Foundation, the National Institute of Health, Purdue Research Foundation, Qatar National Research Foundation, CERIAS, Panasonic, and Microsoft Corp. In 2001, he received the CAREER Award from the National Science Foundation and in 2004, he received a Purdue University Faculty Scholar award. Professor Aref is a member of Purdue's CERIAS. He is an associate editor of the ACM Transactions of Database Systems (ACM TODS) and the ACM Transactions of Spatial Algorithms and Systems (TSAS), and has been an editor of the VLDB Journal. He is a senior member of the IEEE, and a member of the ACM. Professor Aref is an executive committee member, co-founder, and the past chair of the ACM Special Interest Group on Spatial Information (SIGSPATIAL).