Washington Research Foundation Entrepreneurship Endowed Professor in Computer Science & Engineering and Electrical Engineering Shwetak Patel was named an Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Fellow. ACM is the world’s largest educational and scientific computing society. Out of 53 computer scientists from a dozen countries, Patel is one of those selected for recognition. The award was conferred based on a recipient’s outstanding contributions to the arts, sciences and practices of computing and impact on the broader community.
ACM President Vicki Hanson describes the ACM selection as the highest honor to a computer scientist or computer engineer: “As nearly 100,000 computing professionals are members of our association, to be selected to join the top one percent is truly an honor. Fellows are chosen by their peers and hail from leading universities, corporations and research labs throughout the world. Their inspiration, insights and dedication bring immeasurable benefits that improve lives and help drive the global economy. ”
Although he is at an early point in his career, Patel has excelled in his field. His ACM peers chose to recognize him for his “contributions to sustainability sensing, low-power wireless sensing and mobile health.” Within the last year, Patel has received several prestigious awards, including the Presidential Early Career Award (PECASE) from U.S. President Barack Obama and an Outstanding Collaborator Award from Microsoft Research. In previous years, he has received the MacArthur “Genius” Fellowship (2011), Microsoft Research Faculty Fellowship (2011), Sloan Fellowship (2012), MIT TR-35 Award (2009), World Economic Forum Young Global Scientist Award (2013) and NSF Career Award (2013). He was named the top innovator of the year by Seattle Business Magazine and was named Newsmaker of the year by Seattle Business Journal in 2011.
Patel is the directer of the UbiComp Lab. His lab focuses on the development of innovative sensing systems for real world applications in health, sustainability and novel interactions. Patel has utilized the ubiquity of cellphones to transform mobile devices into a life-saving medical tool. He and his students have used sophisticated sensing components to optimize a phone’s built-in microphone, camera and other features to provide health care delivery in low-resource settings. Two of these applications are SpiroCall and HemaApp. The former measures lung function over a phone call, while the latter monitors hemoglobin levels through noninvasive methods.
In June, ACM will formally recognize Patel and his peers at the annual Awards Banquet in San Francisco.