John Carter  John Carter photo         

contact information

Lead Architect - Hyperscale Cloud -and- Master Inventor
IBM CloudLab, Austin, TX, USA


Professional Associations

Professional Associations:  ACM Senior Member  |  ACM SIGARCH  |  ACM SIGCOMM  |  ACM SIGMETRICS  |  ACM SIGMICRO  |  ACM SIGOPS  |  IEEE  |  IEEE Communications Society  |  IEEE Computer Society  |  IEEE, Senior Member


Dr. John Carter is the Lead Architect of Hyperscale Cloud in IBM's new Cloud Innovation Lab (aka CloudLab).  In this role, he is leading IBM's effort to design, deploy, automate, and operate hyperscale cloud data centers.  Among the many topics being attacked in this effort are greatly increasing the scalability of IBM cloud management software, designing cloud operating environments tailored to hybrid (cloud/non-cloud) uses, and developing automated analytics and operations systems that can analyze the immense amounts of operational data generated by large cloud systems and automatically respond to issues (performance, security, reliability, etc.)  He is also an IBM Master Inventor in recognition of his contributions to and leadership of IBM's innovation and IP strategy.

Prior to joining the CloudLab, Dr. Carter led the Future Systems department at IBM Research - Austin, which performed research on mobile enterprise systems, software-defined environments with an emphasis on data center networking, and power aware systems

The Mobile Enterprise Systems research group is developing novel technologies and services for IBM's next generation Mobile Backend as a Service (MBaaS) offerings. This work includes developing, evaluating, and refining novel mobile runtime environments, mobile services (e.g., analytics, message queuing, performance monitoring, a variety of storage systems, security, and privacy), and specialized services and applications for specific verticals (system management, search, smart medicine, smart energy, and smart commerce). The team is particularly focused on Data as a Service (DaaS) and building industry-specific mobile applications that exploit our novel MBaaS capabilities.

The Data Center Networking research group is developing next generation data center network technologies that exploit the emerging software-defined network (SDN) architecture. The primary focus of this work is on exploiting and extending OpenFlow and IBM switch firmware to support scalable, reliable, secure, virtualized, converged flat Layer 2 (Ethernet) data center networks. The team is investigating novel DCN topologies made out of traditional top-of-rack switches to reduce the high cost and complexity of traditional three-tier (access, ..., core) DCN architectures. He is also investigating new northbound APIs for future "network operating systems", scalable and robust OpenFlow (SDN) controller designs, and ways to better expose and exploit the capabilities of emerging 10Gb-40Gb ethernet switches in an SDN environment.

The Power Aware Systems research group is developing an array of technologies designed to dramatically reduce data center and server energy consumption as part of IBM's Smart Planet initiative. These projects include: (i) integrating IT and facilities energy management (e.g., co-managing both computing resources and the electrical/cooling infrastructure), (ii) devising energy-aware virtualization mechanisms that made consolidation and task placement decisions based partly on energy efficiency, (iii) developing low-power high-performance storage servers that exploited flash and energy-aware caching/replication policies to reduce storage power, and i(v) developing platform energy management solutions that actively managed the power consumed by individual components within a server (e.g., processors, memory, fans, and power supplies).

Prior to joining IBM, Dr. Carter was the Associate Director of the School of Computing at the University of Utah, where he led a number of research projects in the areas of multiprocessor computer architecture, distributed systems, and memory system design. Additional details on these projects (e.g., Impulse, Ultraviolet, Khazana, and more) can be found on Dr. Carter's (legacy) webpage at the University of Utah.

Dr. Carter is a Senior Member of the IEEE and ACM and has been on the conference organizing and program committees of many technical conferences, including serving as General Chair of the 2011 and 2012 IEEE International Symposia on Workload Characterization (IISWC '11/'12) and the 2008 Symposium on High-Performance Computer Architecture (HPCA '08).

Dr. Carter received his Ph.D. in Computer Science in 1993 from Rice University, working under the guidance of Willy Zwaenepoel in the area of efficient distributed shared memory (cf., Munin).