Steffen Smolka (Cornell CS Ph.D. ’19), Nate Foster (Cornell CS Associate Professor), Justin Hsu (former Cornell CS postdoc, now faculty at the University of Wisconsin, Madison), Tobias KappĂ© (University College London), Dexter Kozen (Joseph Newton Pew, Jr. Professor in Engineering and CS Professor), and Alexandra Silva (former Cornell CS postdoc, now faculty at UCL) received a distinguished paper award at the ACM SIGPLAN Symposium on Principles of Programming Languages (POPL). POPL is the premier conference in theoretical programming languages.

The paper, “Guarded Kleene Algebra with Tests: Verification of Uninterpreted Programs in Nearly Linear Time,” describes an efficient fragment of Kleene Algebra with Tests, an algebraic system (invented by Kozen) that can be used to reason about a wide variety of computing systems.

The paper is dedicated to Laurie Hendren who received her Ph.D. from the Cornell CS department in 1990 and had a distinguished career as a faculty member at McGill University. She passed away in May 2019 after a long battle with cancer.