About ACM Charles P. "Chuck" Thacker Breakthrough in Computing Award

The award celebrates Chuck Thacker's pioneering contributions in computing and his long-term inspirational mentorship of generations of computer scientists.

Charles P. (Chuck) Thacker (1943-2017) received the 2009 ACM A.M. Turing Award for “the pioneering design and realization of the first modern personal computer – the Alto at Xerox PARC – and seminal inventions and contributions to local area networks (including the Ethernet), multiprocessor workstations, snooping cache coherence protocols, and tablet personal computers."

The ACM Breakthrough Award recognizes individuals with the same out-of-the-box thinking and “can-do” approach to solving the unsolved that Thacker exhibited. The recipient should be someone who has made a surprising or disruptive leapfrog in computing ideas or technologies.

The award is accompanied by a prize of $100,000 and is presented at the annual ACM Awards Banquet. The award recipient would be expected to give the ACM Breakthrough Lecture at a major ACM conference of his or her choice during the year following the announcement. The travel expenses of the recipient, and a companion, to attend the Lecture are supported by the award. Financial support of the ACM Breakthrough Award is provided by Microsoft.


Inaugural ACM Chuck Thacker Breakthrough Award Recognizes Fundamental Contributions that Enabled Cloud Computing

Inaugural ACM Breakthrough in Computing Award Goes to Rosenblum

ACM has named Mendel Rosenblum of Stanford University the first recipient of the ACM Charles P. "Chuck" Thacker Breakthrough in Computing Award. Rosenblum is recognized for reinventing the virtual machine for the modern era and thereby revolutionizing datacenters and enabling modern cloud computing. With his students at Stanford, he brought virtual machines back to life by using them to solve challenging technical problems in building system software for scalable multiprocessors.

2018 ACM Thacker Breakthrough in Computing Award recipient Mendel Rosenblum