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Alan L. Tharp


Alumni Distinguished Professor Emeritus

Ph. D., Northwestern University, 1969

Dr. Tharp's primary research interest is in the area of developing new and improved file structures. Of particular interest are structures which improve system performance and ones which allow new applications - tasks which were previously not doable because of a lack of appropriate data structures. He is also interested in database architectures, in improving the usability of software systems, and in computer science education.

Most recently, he has been interested in promoting the teaching of innovation (right-brain) skills to computer scientists and engineers.  Successful market-pull innovation would not only provide processes, products, and services to improve the quality of life, but it would also create a significant number of jobs.  Innovation does not end with an idea, but rather with the widespread adoption of the resulting product, process, or service. 

Representative Publications

File Organization and Processing, John Wiley & Sons, New York, 1988, 398 pp.
"Gray Code Chaining: A High Performance Hashing Algorithm for Limited Storage Applications", (with M. Loeb), Information Technology, 2007. ITNG '07. Fourth International Conference on 2-4 April 2007, pp.1014-1020.
Tridirectional Computed Chaining: an efficient hashing algorithm for limited space applications,” (with M. Loeb), Proceedings of the 29th Annual International Computer Software and Applications Conference (COMPSAC 2005), pp. 381-387.
"Adaptive Hashing with Signatures," (with E. A. Schweitz), Information Systems, Vol. 18, No. 8, 1994, pp. 597-608.
          "Using Tries to Eliminate Pattern Collisions in Perfect Hashing," (with M. D. Brain), IEEE Transactions on
  Knowledge and Data Engineering, Vol. 6, No. 2, 1994, pp. 239-247.
"Multi-character Tries for Text Searching," (with L. K. D. Cooper), Information Processing & Management, Vol. 29, No. 2, 1993,
             pp.197-207.
          "High Storage Utilization for Single-Probe Retrieval Linear Hashing," (with S. F. Ou), The Computer Journal, Vol 34,
  No. 5, 1991, pp.455-468.
"Users, a Software Model, and Product Evaluation," (with R. Holcomb), Interacting with Computers, Vol. 3, No. 2, 1991, pp.155-166.

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Department of Computer Science, Box 8206
College of Engineering,
North Carolina State University,
Raleigh, NC 27695

(last update 3-25-12)