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Douglas Schmidt - Vanderbilt University. Nashville, TN, US

Douglas Schmidt Douglas Schmidt

Cornelius Vanderbilt Professor of Computer Science | Vanderbilt University


Expert in mobile cloud computing, cyber-physical systems, information technology and data privacy.





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Producing and Delivering a MOOC on Pattern-Oriented Software Architecture for Concurrent and N Vanderbilt on Coursera: Pattern-Oriented Software Architectures for Concurrent & Networked Software Vanderbilt on Coursera: Douglas C. Schmidt, Computer Science and Engineering Vanderbilt professor’s study reveals what Google knows about you



Schmidt is the Cornelius Vanderbilt Professor of Engineering in the Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Department, the Associate Provost of Research Development and Technologies, the Co-Director of the Data Science Institute, and a Senior Researcher at the Institute for Software Integrated Systems, all at Vanderbilt University. He is also a Visiting Scientist at the Software Engineering Institute (SEI) at Carnegie Mellon University.

Schmidt is an internationally renowned and widely cited (an h-index of 83, an i10-index of 382, and a citation count of 39,100+) researcher whose work focuses on patterns, optimization techniques, and empirical analyses of object-oriented and component-based frameworks and model-driven engineering tools that facilitate the development of distributed real-time and embedded (DRE) middleware frameworks and mobile cloud computing applications on parallel platforms running over wireless/wired networks and embedded system interconnects. He has published 10+ books and 625+ papers (including 115+ journal papers) in top IEEE, ACM, IFIP, and USENIX technical journals, conferences, and books that cover a range of topics, including high-performance communication software systems, parallel processing for high-speed networking protocols, and distributed real-time and embedded (DRE) middleware with CORBA, Real-time Java, object-oriented patterns for concurrent and distributed systems, concurrent and networked software for mobile devices, and model-driven engineering tools. He has mentored and graduated 40+ Ph.D. and Masters students working on these research topics and has presented 550+ keynote addresses, invited talks, and tutorials on mobile cloud computing with Android, reusable patterns, concurrent object-oriented network programming, distributed system middleware at scores of technical conferences.

Schmidt has co-authored several books in the Pattern-Oriented Software Architecture series for Wiley & Sons edited by Frank Buschmann of Siemens, including Patterns for Concurrent and Networked Objects, A Pattern Language for Distributed Computing, and Patterns and Pattern Languages. He has also co-authored two books for Addison-Wesley on the topic of C++ Network Programming edited by Bjarne Stroustrup of AT&T Labs.

Areas of Expertise (13)

Computer Science

Risk and Reliability

Big Data

Digital Learning

Cyber-Physical Systems

Mobile Cloud Computing

Data Privacy

Data Breach

Distributed Real-Time and Embedded Middleware

Software Patterns and Frameworks

Data Science

Big Data Science and Engineering

Computer Engineering

Accomplishments (1)

Received the Award for Excellence in Teaching by the Vanderbilt University School of Engineering (professional)


Education (4)

University of California: Ph.D., Computer Science 1994

University of California: M.S., Computer Science 1990

College of William and Mary: M.A., Sociology 1986

College of William and Mary: B.A., Sociology 1984

Selected Media Appearances (8)

Vandy launches data-science program in response to demand from local businesses

Nashville Business Journal  online


Vanderbilt has launched a Data Science Institute and will welcome its first class of students working toward a master’s degree in data science in the fall, said Doug Schmidt, co-director for the program. The school has hired former HCA Healthcare Inc. Director of Data Science Jesse Spencer-Smith as the program’s chief data scientist.

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What Google knows about you

Axios  online


A study last year by Vanderbilt University's Douglas Schmidt found that Google and Chrome are sending plenty of data to Google even without any user action, including location data (assuming a user hasn't chosen not to share such information). And nearly half the data came from people's interaction with Google's services for advertisers, as opposed to consumers directly choosing to use a Google service.

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Facebook: Piñata, Scapegoat And Villain

Forbes  online


Professor Douglas C. Schmidt of Vanderbilt University, in a recent report states, “Google utilizes the tremendous reach of its products to collect detailed information about people’s online and real-world behaviors, which it then uses to target them with paid advertising.”

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Google is Putting More Privacy Controls Directly in Search

WIRED  online


"It never hurts for people to be reminded that their online activities are being monitored, but I’m not sure it would make anybody feel better about what’s being done with it," says Douglas Schmidt, a computer science researcher at Vanderbilt University who has extensively studied Google's user data collection and retention policies. "A lot of criticism of Google is they appear to provide you ways of disabling stuff and then it doesn’t actually have that expected effect. They’re letting people know that they have a little more control or knowledge, which is helpful, but it ultimately doesn't get to the heart of the concerns."

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The Privacy Battle to Save Google From Itself

WIRED  online


“Google does a good job of protecting your data from hackers, protecting you from phishing, making it easier to zero out your search history or go incognito,” says Douglas Schmidt, a computer science researcher at Vanderbilt University who has studied Google's user data collection and retention policies. “But their business model is to collect as much data about you as possible and cross-correlate it so they can try to link your online persona with your offline persona. This tracking is just absolutely essential to their business. 'Surveillance capitalism' is a perfect phrase for it.”

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Don’t want Google tracking you? You have almost no choice, according to a study.

Washington Post  online


Google’s sweeping capability to collect data makes it nearly impossible to escape the tech giant in the course of normal online activity, according to a study published Tuesday. The 55-page study, led by Vanderbilt University computer science professor Douglas C. Schmidt, said that an idle smartphone running Google’s Android operating system with its Chrome browser open sends data to Google’s servers as often as 14 times an hour. And while not using Google’s devices or services limits data collection, the dominance of Google’s advertising network makes it highly difficult to prevent Google from collecting some data, the study also highlights.

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Why don’t big companies keep their computer systems up-to-date?

The Conversation  online


The Equifax hack, exposing 143 million people’s personal data to unknown cybercriminals starting in March but not made public until mid-September, was entirely avoidable. The company was using out-of-date software with known security weaknesses. But it appears that with Equifax, as with many organizations, those were just the beginning of the problems.

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Oracle Java architect conscripts Harry Potter in making the case against Google

Ars Technica  


The final witness for the day was one of Oracle's experts, Vanderbilt University professor Douglas Schmidt. Schmidt had created a visual "software map" that showed the APIs at issue in this lawsuit as red lines connecting the implementing code, which was represented as blue and green circles. "Classes and interfaces are not islands," Schmidt explained. "They’re connected together in an intricate web of relationships."

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Selected Articles (3)

NP22 Development of the Children Eating Well (CHEW) Mobile Application for WIC Families in Tennessee Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior

Pamela Hull, Elyse Shearer, Summer Weber, Douglas Schmidt, Jessica Jones, Calvin Harris, Shelagh Mulvaney

2019 Mobile applications (‘apps’) for WIC families are becoming increasingly prevalent, especially in states that have transitioned from paper vouchers to electronic benefits transfer (EBT) for WIC. Apps and other digital technologies can improve the WIC experience by helping participants check their benefit balance, scan food items to determine WIC eligibility, streamline service delivery, and provide additional nutrition education.

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Consensus Mechanisms and Information Security Technologies Elsevier

Peng Zhang, Douglas C Schmidt, Jules White, Abhishek Dubey

2019 Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) helps maintain and distribute predefined types of information and data in a decentralized manner. It removes the reliance on a third-party intermediary, while securing information exchange and creating shared truth via transaction records that are hard to tamper with. The successful operation of DLT stems largely from two computer science technologies: consensus mechanisms and information security protocols.

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OpTrak: Tracking Opioid Prescriptions via Distributed Ledger Technology International Journal of Information Systems and Social Change

Peng Zhang, Breck Stodghill, Cory Pitt, Cavin Briody, Douglas C Schmidt, Jules White, Alan Pitt, Kelly Aldrich

2019 This article describes the structure and functionality of OpTrak, a decentralized app implemented using the Ethereum blockchain that targets the opioid epidemic currently plaguing the United States. Over-prescription and distribution of opioids cost the national healthcare system over $78 billion every year. Problems persist in every stage of the process, from doctors prescribing the medication to the pharmacists fulfilling prescriptions.

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