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John A. Thywissen
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John A. Thywissen

Photo of JohnHello! This is the personal Web site of John A. Thywissen.

I am a Researcher and and Assistant Instructor, pursuing a Ph.D. degree in the Department of Computer Science at The University of Texas at Austin. This work is in preparation for my next major career objective: a faculty position in CS at a Research University.

Broadly, I view my role as that of a programming language "conceptual toolsmith", who provides more powerful programming abstractions, techniques, and concepts to enable specification of problems and solutions at an intellectual, rather than mechanical, level. Admittedly, this is a wide field, but it’s a fertile one; one in which we are still searching for appropriate abstractions and structures for concepts as seemingly simple as "do several things at once" (concurrency).

The programming language Orc (on which I'm working with Prof. W. R. Cook and Prof. J. Misra) offers an example, where well-chosen programming language structures enable elegant expression of solutions. Rather than use low-level thread create, synchronize, and destroy primitives, Orc provides the programmer with four combinators to express how to orchestrate the concurrent evaluation of program expressions. These abstractions enable programmers to express concurrency more succinctly and naturally than in thread-based concurrent languages.

In my career before UTCS, I was involved with a huge assortment of technology projects, with applications spanning satellite launch to cruise ships to banking to funeral planning. My firm managed 2.6 billion lines of code for clients across 60 countries. This provided a fascinating vantage point to observe how computing is used and its impacts.

Feel free to "give me a holler" -- my e-mail is jthywiss, followed by an at-sign, followed by

(If you're in the mood for entertainment, try my father’s historical novel: Prussian Cadenza.)

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     Updated 2014 Dec 12
     © 2013 John A. Thywissen. All rights reserved. This Web page is not an official publication of The
     University of Texas at Austin and does not represent the views of the university or its officers.
     John A. Thywissen • jthywiss@cs