EE Student Information

EE380 Computer Systems Colloquium presents "Computer Security: The Mess We're In, How We Got Here, and What to Do About It"

image of prof Alan Karp
Computer Security: The Mess We're In, How We Got Here, and What to Do About It
Wednesday, January 29, 2020 - 4:30pm
Shriram 104
Alan Karp (EARTH Computing)
Abstract / Description: 

There are dozens of companies selling products to solve your Identity and Access Management (IAM) problems. Why so many? Because IAM is really hard. But why is IAM so hard? I hope to convince you in this talk the reason is that our approach to IAM is fundamentally flawed. The talk includes my personal theory of how we got into this mess and a strategy for getting out of it.


Alan Karp has a Ph.D. in Astronomy from the University of Maryland and was an assistant professor of physics at Dartmouth College until he learned he was expected to spend all his time writing grant proposals. He then went over to the dark side, doing 15 to life at IBM and more than 20 years at HP Labs. Alan worked in a variety of fields, including processor architecture as one of the designers of the Itanium, game theory, where he built an automated negotiation tool, and distributed systems, where his research was turned into an HP product that was later described as "web services before there were web services." His last several years at HP were spent building systems that were made easier to use by adding security. After leaving HP he tried being retired but didn't like it, so he now is Principled Architect at EARTH Computing, a startup bringing to market a new kind of datacenter network. Alan received two IBM Technical Innovation Awards and is actually proud of a few of his 75+ patents.