Frances Yao

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Frances Foong Yao (儲楓) is a Chinese-born American computer scientist. She was Chair Professor and Head of the Department of computer science at the City University of Hong Kong.[1]

From Harzing Publish or Perish, she has a total of 1861 citations. Her top paper which has 213 citations was co-authored with MS Paterson, entitled "Efficient binary space partitions for hidden-surface removal and solid modeling

After receiving a B.S. in mathematics from National Taiwan University in 1969, Yao did her Ph.D. studies under the supervision of Michael J. Fischer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, receiving her Ph.D. in 1973. She then held positions at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Brown University, and Stanford University, before joining the staff at the Xerox Palo Alto Research Center in 1979 where she stayed until her retirement in 1999.

In 2003, she came out of retirement to become the Head and a Chair Professor of the Department of Computer Science at City University, which she held until June 2011. She is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science; in 1991, she and Ronald Graham won the Lester R. Ford Award of the Mathematical Association of America for their expository article, A Whirlwind Tour of Computational Geometry.

Yao's husband, Andrew Yao, is also a well-known theoretical computer scientist and Turing Award winner.[2][3][4][5][6] Yao's Erdős number is 1.

Much of Yao's research has been in the subject of computational geometry and combinatorial algorithms; she is known for her work with Mike Paterson on binary space partitioning,[7] her work with Dan Greene on finite-resolution computational geometry,[8] and her work with Alan Demers and Scott Shenker on scheduling algorithms for energy-efficient power management.[9]

More recently she has been working in cryptography. Along with her husband Andrew Yao and Wang Xiaoyun, they found new attacks on the SHA-1 cryptographic hash function.[10][11]


  1. ^ Academic Staff, Department of Computer Science, City University.
  2. ^ Profile from Yao's web page at City University.
  3. ^ F. Frances (Foong) Yao at the Mathematics Genealogy Project.
  4. ^ Stanford Computer Science Historical Faculty List.
  5. ^ Lester R. Ford Award winners, MAA.
  6. ^ "Andy Yao wins Turing award", Department of Computer Science Alumni News (UIUC) 2 (6), Summer 2001 .
  7. ^ Paterson, M. S.; Yao, F. F. (1990), "Efficient binary space partitions for hidden-surface removal and solid modeling", Discrete & Computational Geometry 5 (1): 485–503, doi:10.1007/BF02187806 .
  8. ^ Greene, D.; Yao, F. F. (1986), "Finite-resolution computational geometry", Proc. 27th IEEE Symp. Foundations of Computer Science, pp. 143–152, doi:10.1109/SFCS.1986.19, ISBN 0-8186-0740-8 .
  9. ^ Yao, F.; Demers, A.; S., Shenker (1995), "A scheduling model for reduced CPU energy", Proc. 36th IEEE Symp. Foundations of Computer Science, pp. 374–382, doi:10.1109/SFCS.1995.492493, ISBN 0-8186-7183-1 .
  10. ^ Leyden, John (August 19, 2005), "SHA-1 compromised further: Crypto researchers point the way to feasible attack", The Register .
  11. ^ Biever, Celeste (December 17, 2005), "Busted! The gold standard in digital security lies in tatters", New Scientist .

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