Ernest Cockrell, Jr. Centennial Chair in EngineeringProfessor
Dr. Yale Patt is a Professor in the Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin, and holds the Ernest Cockrell, Jr. Centennial Chair in Engineering. He also holds the title of University Distinguished Teaching Professor.
He earned his B.S. at Northeastern University and his M.S. and Ph.D. at Stanford University, all in electrical engineering. He has received a number of awards for his research and teaching, most notably the highest honor in his specialty computer architecture, the 1996 IEEE/ACM Eckert-Mauchly Award, "for important contributions to instruction level parallelism and superscalar processor design," and the highest honor in computer science education, the 2000 ACM Karl V. Karlstrom Outstanding Educator Award. Among the other awards he has received are the 1995 IEEE Emannuel R. Piore Medal, the 1999 IEEE W.W. McDowell Award,the 2005 IEEE Charles Babbage Award, the 2011 IEEE B. Ramakrishna Rau Award (inaugural recipient), "for significant contributions and inspiring leadership in the microarchitecture community with respect to teaching, mentoring, research, and service," and at The University of Texas, the Texas Exes Teaching Award for 2002, and the Dads' Association Teaching Fellow ship Award for Fall 2002.
Professor Patt has been a professor of electrical engineering and the Ernest Cockrell, Jr. Centennial Chair in Engineering at The University of Texas since 1999. Before that, he taught at Cornell (1966-67), served in the U.S. Army during the height of the Vietnam War (1967-69), and taught at North Carolina State University (1969-1976), San Francisco State University (1976-1988), the University of California-Berkeley (1979-1988), and the University of Michigan (1988-1999). He has also consulted extensively, including long stints each with DEC, NCR, Motorola, and Intel. He has published more than 100 refereed papers and has won four best paper awards. His only textbook (so far) is "Intro to Computing Systems: from bits and gates to C and beyond" (co-authored with his former student Professor Sanjay Patel), published by McGraw-Hill in 2000 (2nd edition, 2004, and 3rd edition in progress), and adopted already by more than 100 universities worldwide. It revolutionizes how computing is introduced to serious freshmen.
He has supervised 26 completed Ph.D. dissertations, and does not remember how many M.S. theses. He currently supervises 8 graduate students.
Above everything else he does as a professor, Yale Patt loves teaching. At The University of Texas he introduced a new required freshman course, Intro to Computing (EE 306) in Fall 2000, and has taught it every other fall semester to 400+ freshmen. He also teaches his graduate specialty in Microarchitecture (EE 382N) every other spring, and the senior computer architecture course (EE 460N) whenever they let him.
Professor Patt is a microarchitect who focuses his research on what the microprocessor can exploit 8 to 10 years in the future. In 1985, he (and his students Wen-mei Hwu, Steve Melvin, and Mike Shebanow) introduced HPS, a wide-issue, out-of-order processor that implemented precise exceptions. In 1991, he and student Tse-Yu Yeh introduced the two-level dynamic branch predictor. Elements of both are now used in some form by every high performance microprocessor. Today, he is thinking in terms of microprocessors that will be able to exploit the more than 30 billion transistors that will be available on each chip.