Professorships at MIT: Samuel Madden ’99, MNG ’99

(Samuel Madden ’99, MNG ’99)
College of Computing Distinguished Professor of Computing
MIT Stephen A. Schwarzman College of Computing

It’s an honor to be named the inaugural College of Computing Distinguished Professor of Computing, says Samuel Madden ’99, MNG ’99. For him, the best part is that the professorship provides “resources to help support my students and the research that we do. It also gives me inspiration to keep doing the work.”

“My research involves doing interesting things with data of all types,” he says. At MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, Madden and Professor Hari Balakrishnan, the Fujitsu Professor of Computer Science, have used mobile sensing and data analytics to measure the impact of human behavior on road safety.

Excited by the potential of their findings to reduce accidents, the pair cofounded Cambridge Mobile Telematics, a company that provides safe driving technology to insurance carriers, telecommunications and auto companies, and other mobility providers. Drivers can use the company’s app to monitor their driving, and good drivers can get insurance discounts, Madden explains. The app monitors several behaviors, he notes: “Do you slam on the brakes? Do you look at your phone a lot?” Awareness and feedback help drivers improve over time, and Madden is proud that MIT research is making driving safer.

“MIT offers an amazing set of resources to us to get work done,” says Madden. “And of course, we have the best students and colleagues in the world.”

Christine Thielman