So many IT awards, so little time

IEEE Computer Society, Communications Society dish out honors

I knew when I set out a few weeks back to put together a package on the IT and telecom industry's top awards and honors for innovators that I'd inevitably and unintentionally leave a few out.

A couple that I should have included are the IEEE Computer Society and IEEE Communications Society Awards (I did include the overall IEEE Medal of Honor and Alexander Graham Bell Medal, but neglected the individual society awards). These  are the two biggest of the IEEE's 38 societies, with the Computer Society formed in 1946 and boasting roughly 85,000 members.

As it turns out, the IEEE Computer Society late last month doled out its annual awards, which went to some familiar names as well some those of us in the industry probably should be familiar with.

For example, VMware co-founders Diane Greene and Mendel Rosenblum recieved the 2011 Computer Entrepreneur Award "for creating a virtualization platform that profoundly revolutionized modern computing" and Ian Foster, a professor of computer science at the University of Chicago and a distinguished fellow at Argonne National Laboratory, won the 2011 Tsutomu Kanai Award "for pioneering research in grid computing, integrating geographically distributed instruments, computers, and data" (Network World has frequently written about Foster's grid computing efforts, including the Globus Project and a company called Univa.).

Others that caught my eye: Father of parallel processing David Kuck, who earned the Computer Pioneer Award, and Ian Akyildiz, a telecom professor at Georgia Institute of Technology and director of Georgia Tech's Broadband and Wireless Networking Laboratory, who snagged the 2011 W. Wallace McDowell Award, "for pioneering contributions to wireless sensor network architectures and communication protocols".

Find the full list here (and below is an image of the Computer Entrepreneur Awards received last year by Cisco co-founders Sandy Lerner and Len Bosack).

Separately, the IEEE Communications Society's top awards include the Edwin Howard Armstrong Achievement Award, which has gone to tech luminaries such as the recently deceased packet switching pioneer Paul Baran, and the Distinguished Industry Leader Award, which Cisco chief John Chambers won in 2002 and which the head of South Korea's big telecom provider KT Corp., won this year.

RELATED: Why there's no Nobel Prize in Computing

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Copyright © 2011 IDG Communications, Inc.

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