Computer Sciences Dept.

Mark D. Hill

Gene M. Amdahl & John P. Morgridge
Professor Emeritus of Computer Sciences

2016 Photo of Mark D. Hill

Amusement & Photos

My Erdös Number is 3, because Paul Erdös wrote a paper with
  1. Michael E. Saks, who wrote a paper with
  2. Anne E. Condon, who wrote a paper with
  3. Mark D. Hill.

George E. P. Box, Statistician, 1987:
Essentially, all models are wrong, but some are useful.

William Gibson, Science Fiction Author, 1993:
The future is already here -- it's just not very evenly distributed.

Fred Schneider, Cornell Computer Scientist, 2014:
I strive to write papers that will be the first paper, the best paper, or the last paper on a subject.

Doug Burger, Microsoft Research, 2014, from Microsoft Strategist Tren Giffen channeling investor Howard Marks:
Disproportionate returns (in research and investing) come from correct non-consensus forecasts.


A Fun Word: Skeuomorph
A derivative object that retains ornamental design cues from structures that were necessary in the original. Often used in technology, such common save icon depicting a now-obsolete floppy disk.

Stephen Hawking, Physicist:
The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge.

The Great Questions by Robert Fulghum:
Often expressed in anger (e.g., parent to child), but better used for philosophical enquiry.

  • What on earth have you done?
  • What will you think of next?
  • Who do you think you are?

Fred Brooks (quoted by Almasi & Gottlieb):
Einstein argued that there must be simplied explanations of nature, because God is not capricious or arbitrary. No such faith comforts the software engineer.

Norman Augustine (quoted by Gray & Reuter):
Software is like entropy. It is difficult to grasp, weights nothing, and obeys The Second Law of Thermodynamics; i.e., it always increases.

Douglas Adams, author, futurist:
There is a theory which states that if ever anyone discovers exactly what the universe is for and why it is here, it will instantly disappear and be replaced by something even more bizarre and inexplicable. There is another theory which states that this has already happened.

Jack Kilby, co-inventor of the integrated circuit, after being introduced for his 2000 Nobel Prize as having launched the global digital revolution:
When I hear that kind of thing, it reminds me of what the beaver told the rabbit as they stood at the base of Hoover Dam: "No, I didn't build it myself, but it's based on an idea of mine."

Joe Biden: Don't tell me what you value, show me your budget, and I'll tell you what you value.

(Robert) Zak's Razor, 1997:

  • Architects say, "It COULD work."
  • Implementors say, "It SHOULD work."
  • Verifiers say, "It WILL work."

A 21st Century Update, 2007, by Shailender Chaudhry, Robert Cypher, and Anders Landin:

  • Implementors say, "It WON'T work."
  • Verifiers say, "It DOESN'T work."
  • Architects say, "It MUST work."

Isaac Asimov, 1983 introduction to "The Caves of Steel" (1953), 1st book of "The Robot Novels":
R.U.R. added its somber view to that of the even more famous Frankenstein, in which the creation of another kind of artificial human being also ended in the disaster, though on a more limited scale. Following these examples, it became very common, in the 1920s and 1930s, to picture robots as dangerous devices that invariably destroyed their creators. The moral was pointed out over and over again that "there are some things Man was not meant to know."

Even as a youngster, though, I could not bring myself to believe that if knowledge presented danger, the solution was ignorance. To me, it always seemed that the solution had to be wisdom. You did not refuse to look at danger, rather you learned how to handle it safely.

After all, this had been the human challenge since a certain group of primates became human in the first place. Any technological advance can be dangerous. Fire was dangerous from the start, and so (even more so) was speech—and both are still dangerous to this day—but human beings would not be human without them.

On Parallelism in Electronic Computing With Apologies to the Author of Genesis,
Mark D. Hill,
Introductory Remarks for Single-Threaded versus Multi-Threaded Debate vs. Yale Patt, FCRC/ISCA/CARD, Phoenix, AZ, June 2019.


1974 Science Fair Project of Mark Hill

Mark's 1974 Science Fair Project -- a Mechanical Binary Adder. Click for 3.7MB image.

ca1983 Picture of Hill
Mark, UC Berkeley CS grad student (~1983)

1988 Picture of Hill
Mark, fresh from his Ph.D. (1988)

1995 X-Ray of Hill's Wrist
Proof that Mark is into Hardware (wrist after 1995 bike accident)

1999 Picture of Hill
Mark with Univ. of Texas Professors (1999 in Austin)

2001 Picture of Hill as Viking
Mark as Contemplative Viking (2001 ISCA banquet)

Picture of Mark D. Hill Caricature of Mark D. Hill by Enric Pereda, La Rambla, Barcelona, 9/2002
Caricature of Mark (right) by Enric Pereda, La Rambla,
Barcelona, 9/2002. Click Here for 257KB image.

2006 Photo of Mark D. Hill by Bob Rashid
Mark D. Hill with Hardware, 2006 Photo by Bob Rashid. Click Here for 35MB tif image.

2007 Picture of Patt, Hill, and Emer
Yale Patt, Yale Patt (?), and moderator Joel Emer (Single- vs. Multi-Thread Debate at CARD/HPCA 2007)

2007 Photoshopped Picture of Patt and Hill Dueling
Wild-West-style resolution of the CARD 2007 debate (photoshopped by Mike Marty)

Mark Hill Drafted to Dance at VLDB 2008 Banquet
Mark Hill (right) Drafted to Dance at VLDB Banquet (8/2008)

2008 Wisconsin Computer Architects with Bucky Badger
Some Wisconsin Computer Architects with Bucky Badger (10/2008):
Brad Beckmann, Kevin Moore, David Wood, Bucky Badger, Steve Scott,
Babak Falsafi, Mark Hill, Guri Sohi, and Mike Marty. Click for 2MB image.

Mark Hill and Sue Dentinger in Giant Gerbil Wheel
Mark Hill and Sue Dentinger in Giant Gerbil Wheel at Wonderball (08/2010),
a benefit for the Madison Children's Museum. Click for 8MB image.

Mark Hill with Cray-1
Mark Hill with Cray-1 at Computer History Museum, Mountain View, CA (12/2012),
Click for large image.

Mark Hill in Google Street View Car
Mark Hill in Google Street View Car at Computer History Museum, Mountain View, CA (12/2012).

Computer Architects at Caesarea, 2013
Some Computer Architects at Caesarea (left to right): David Kaeli, Josep Torrellas, Jim Smith, Mark Hill, Doug Burger, Jim Goodman, Avi Mendelson, Luiz Barroso, and Uri Weiser (6/2013). Click for 2.1MB photoshopped image.

Mark Hill in Ph.D. Robes, May 2014

Mark in Ph.D. Robes (5/2014). Click for 7.5MB image.

Sue, Bucky, & Mark

Sue Dentinger, Bucky Badger, & Mark Hill at UW CS Dept. 50th Anniversary (9/2014). Click for 5MB image.

Smith, Wood, & Hill

Wisconsin Professors Jim Smith (left), David Wood, & Mark Hill at MICRO'14
Banquet in King's College, Cambridge (It looked like Hogwarts) (12/2014).

Mark Hill

Mark Hill Enroute to CS Graduation Reception (5/2015). Click for 2.5MB image.

Mark Hill

Mark Hill at MICRO in Hawaii (12/2015).

Mark Hill & Virtual Bilge Multu

Mark Hill with Virtual Bilge Multu at Department Retreat (1/2016).

Mark Hill

Mark Hill as Department Chair (8/2016). Click for higher-resolution image.

Mark Hill

Mark Hill and Sue Dentinger after 30 Years of Marriage (9/2016).

Mark Hill

Mark Hill at Epic Wonderland with Alice and the Mad Hatter (9/2016). Click for higher-resolution image.


Dept. Chair Mark Hill with Women of the ACM (WACM) Award Winners Alayna Truttmann,
Meena Syamkumar, Rita Marie Roloff, & Nafisah Islam, CS Awards Ceremony (5/2017).


Turing Award 2018

Mark Hill, Murali Annavaram, Turing Winner John Hennessy, Alan Turing Bust
Turing Winner David Patterson, and Luiz Barroso, ISCA (6/2018).
Click for higher-resolution image.

CRA 2018 Holiday Card

CCC Chair Mark Hill on CRA Holiday Card with Vint Cerf and others (12/2018).

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