McKinley's research interests are broad and include compilers, memory management, runtime systems, programming languages, debugging, reliability, security, and architecture. She and her collaborators have produced a number of tools that are in wide research and industrial use, e.g., the DaCapo Java Benchmarks, the TRIPS Compiler, the Hoard memory manager, the MMTk garbage collector toolkit, and the Immix mark-region garbage collection algorithm.
Selected Awards & Honors:
- IEEE Fellow
- ACM Fellow
- ASPLOS Best Paper Award, 2009
- CACM Research Highlights Invited Paper, 2008
- College of Natural Science's Innovative Outreach Program Award, 2006
- IBM Faculty Award, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008
- NSF CAREER Award, 1996-2000
- DARPA/NASA Assistantship in Parallel Processing, 1991-1992
- "Looking Back on the Language and Hardware Revolutions: Measured Power, Performance, and Scaling," H. Esmaeilzadeh, T. Cao, X. Yang,S. M. Blackburn, and K. S. McKinley, ACM International Conference on Architectural Support for Programming Languages and Operating Systems (ASPLOS), March, 2011.
- "The Future of Computing Performance: Game Over or Next Level?" Samuel H. Fuller and Lynette I. Millett, Editors, National Research Council Committee on Sustaining Growth in Computing Performance (member), National Academies Press, 2011.
- "An Evaluation of the TRIPS Computer System," M. Gebhart, B. Maher, J. Burrill, K. Coons, J. Diamond, P. Gratz, M. Marino, N. Ranganathan, B. Robatmili, A. Smith, D. Burger, S. W. Keckler, and K. S. McKinley, ACM International Conference on Architectural Support for Programming Languages and Operating Systems (ASPLOS), Washington, D.C., March 2009. Best Paper Award.
- "Wake up and Smell the Coffee: Evaluation Methodology for the 21st Century," S. M. Blackburn, K. S. McKinley, et al., Communications of the ACM, 51(8):83-89, Aug. 2008. Invited Research Highlight.
- "Immix: A Mark-Region Garbage Collector with Space Efficiency, Fast Collection, and Mutator Performance," S. M. Blackburn and K. S. McKinley, The ACM Conference on Programming Language Design and Implementation (PLDI), pp.~22-32, Tucson, AZ, June 2008.
- "Probabilistic Calling Context," M. D. Bond and K. S. McKinley, ACM SIGPLAN Conference on Object-Oriented Programming, Systems, Languages, and Applications (OOPSLA), Montreal, Canada, pp.~97-112, October 2007.
- Member, National Academies Study on Sustaining Growth in Computer Performance, 2007-2011
- Co-Editor-in-Chief of ACM Transactions on Programming Language Systems (TOPLAS), 2007-2010
- Technical Program Chair: PLDI 2007, PACT 2005, and ASPLOS 2004
- Treasurer/Secretary, SIGPLAN, 1999-2001
- Mentor, CRA-W Distributed Mentoring Programs Organizer, CRA-W/CDC Mentoring Workshops, 2007, 2009
- Director of the Department of Computer Sciences' First Bytes Program, a one week summer camp to introduce high school girls to computer science, 2002-2004