Fifty Years of Software Engineering

Professor Anthony I. (Tony) Wasserman
Integrated Innovation Institute
Carnegie Mellon University

Chaired by
Dr ROSENBLUM, David S., Provost's Chair Professor, School of Computing

  12 Oct 2017 Thursday, 10:30 AM to 12:00 PM

 Executive Classroom, COM2-04-02


The ability to develop and deploy large complex software-intensive systems has progressed tremendously over the past fifty years, greatly aided by advances in hardware capabilities, performance, and reliability. As a result, people routinely use applications that would have seemed inconceivable when the term "software engineering" was coined, to the extent that advanced societies are increasingly dependent on their continuing reliable operation. This talk represents an effort to identify and categorize the seminal research projects and engineering efforts that have played a key role in advancing the field to its current state, and to point out some ongoing work that will be central to future advances.


Since 2005, Anthony I. (Tony) Wasserman has been a Professor in the Software Management program at Carnegie Mellon University's Silicon Valley campus, where he also created the Center for Open Source Investigation as his research focus. His current project, OSSPAL, is focused on evaluation, adoption, and use of open source software by organizations.

Tony was previously founder and CEO of Interactive Development Environments (IDE), creator of the innovative multiuser Software through Pictures development platform, and one of the first 100 dot-coms. He later served as VP of Engineering for a consumer-oriented startup, and a VP at Bluestone Software, developer of a Java EE application server. Earlier in his career, he was a Professor at the University of California, San Francisco, where his User Software Engineering program first introduced tools for rapid prototyping of interactive systems, and a Lecturer at the University of California, Berkeley.

Tony has a Ph.D. in computer sciences from the University of Wisconsin - Madison and a B.A. in mathematics and physics from the University of California, Berkeley. He is a Fellow of the IEEE (since 1996) and a Fellow of the ACM (since 1996), honored for his contributions to integrated software engineering environments. His professional service includes two terms (2010-16) as a Director of the Open Source Initiative, plus roles in the organization of numerous technical conferences. He was a co-founder (1976) of ACM's Special Interest Group on Software Engineering (SIGSOFT). He was a Shaw Visiting Professor in the Department of Computer Science at NUS in 2014.

Tony has served as Chair of IFIP Working Group 2.13 (Open Source Software) since 2015. He served as General Chair of WG 2.13's International Conference on Open Source Systems in 2009 and 2014, and as Program Co-Chair in 2015. He is currently a member of the San Francisco Elections Commission's Open Source Voting Technical Advisory Committee.