CSE Distinguished Lecture: Vijay Vazirani

CSE Distinguished Lecture

Novel Markets on the Internet: Models and Algorithms

The first speaker in the Fall 2016 CSE Distinguished Lecture Series is Prof. Vijay Vazirani, a Professor in the School of Computer Science in the College of Computing at Georgia Tech. He will talk about “Novel Markets on the Internet: Models and Algorithms.”

VijayVazirani200.jpgDate: Monday, October 3
Time: 11:00am – Noon
Location: Room 1202, CSE Building

Host: CSE/ECE Prof. Alon Orlitsky

Abstract:  The Internet has revolutionized markets; perhaps the most impressive of these in terms of size, impact and novelty of mechanisms and algorithms is Google's Adwords market. Google's initial mechanism for this market did not effectively serve small advertisers, who form the fat tail of the budget distribution, thereby losing a significant fraction of potential revenue. Building on the theory of online matching algorithms, we gave an optimal algorithm for the Adwords market and a formal framework that has proved useful in thinking about budgeted auctions more generally. These ideas have been widely adopted by Google and other search engine companies.

The rapidly growing cloud computing market, which is projected to eclipse even the Adwords market, provides another opportunity for novel algorithms and practical impact. I will describe a first attempt at in this direction: an equilibrium-based market model for pricing and allocating resources, and a polynomial time algorithm for computing them without relying on the proverbial "invisible hand of the market''.

Bio: Vijay Vazirani received his BS at MIT and his Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley. He has made seminal contributions to the theory of algorithms, in particular to the classical maximum matching problem, approximation algorithms, and complexity theory. Over the last decade and a half, he has contributed widely to an algorithmic study of economics and game theory.  Vazirani is author of a definitive book on Approximation Algorithms, published in 2001, and translated into Japanese, Polish, French and Chinese. He was McKay Fellow at U. C. Berkeley in Spring 2002, and Distinguished SISL Visitor at Caltech during 2011-12. He is a Guggenheim Fellow and an ACM Fellow.