Albert-László Barabási


Albert-László Barabási

Albert-László Barabási (born March 30, 1967) is a Romanian-born Hungarian scientist. He is the former Emil T. Hofmann professor at the University of Notre Dame and current Distinguished Professor and Director of Northeastern University's Center for Network Science and an associate member of the Center of Cancer Systems Biology at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard University [http://ccsb.dfci.harvard.edu/] . He introduced in 1999 the concept of scale-free networks and proposed the Barabasi-Albert model to explain their widespread emergence in natural, technological and social systems, from the cellular telephone to the WWW or online communities.

Birth and education

Barabási was born to an ethnic Hungarian family of the Székely community in Cârţa ("Csíkkarcfalva"), Harghita County (Transylvania). His father, László, was a museum director, while his mother, Katalin Keresztes, taught literature, and later became director of a children's theater.Dale Keiger, [http://www.nd.edu/~alb/Public%20Relations/NextBigThing(Barabasi)_NDMag,Vol36,No1,49-53(Sprg07).pdf "Looking for the next big thing"] , Notre Dame Magazine, vol. 36 (Spring 2007), no. 1, 49-53] He attended a high school specializing in science and mathematics; in the 10th grade, he won a local physics olympiad. Between 1986 and 1989, he studied physics and engineering at the University of Bucharest; during that time, he began doing research on chaos theory, publishing 3 papers.

In 1989, Barabási emigrated to Hungary, together with his father. In 1991, he took a master's degree at Eötvös Loránd University in Budapest, before enrolling in the Physics program at Boston University, where he earned a Ph.D. in 1994, under the direction of H. Eugene Stanley.

Academic career

After a one-year postdoc at the IBM Thomas J. Watson Research Center, Barabási joined the faculty at the University of Notre Dame in 1995. In 2000, at the age of 32, he was named the Emil T. Hofman Professor of Physics, becoming the youngest endowed professor. In 2004 he founded the Center for Complex Network Research. In 2005-2007 he was a Visiting Professor at Harvard University. In Fall, 2007, Barabási left Notre Dame to become the Distinguished Professor and Director of the Center for Network Science at Northeastern University.

As of 2007, Barabási is a Hungarian citizen, and a permanent resident of the United States. [http://www.nd.edu/~alb/CV/cv.html Curriculum Vitae] ]

Research and achievements

Barabási has been a major contributor to the development of real-world network theory, together with several other scientists from physics, mathematics, and computer science. His biggest role has been the introduction of the "scale-free network" concept. Among the topics in network theory that Barabási has studied are growth and preferential attachment, the mechanisms probably responsible in part for the structure of the World Wide Web or the cell. According to the review of one of Barabási's books, preferential attachment can be described as follows:

"Barabási has found that the websites that form the network (of the WWW) have certain mathematical properties. The conditions for these properties to occur are threefold. The first is that the network has to be expanding, growing. This precondition of growth is very important as the idea of emergence comes with it. It is constantly evolving and adapting. That condition exists markedly with the world wide web. The second is the condition of preferential attachment, that is, nodes (websites) will wish to link themselves to hubs (websites) with the most connections. The third condition is what is termed competitive fitness which in network terms means its rate of attraction." [http://www.sociopranos.com/bookreviewlinked.htm www.sociopranos.com]

Awards

Barabási is a Fellow of the American Physical Society. In 2005 he was awarded the FEBS Anniversary Prize for Systems Biology and in 2006 he was awarded the John von Neumann Medal by the John von Neumann Computer Society from Hungary, for outstanding achievements in computer-related science and technology. [ [http://newsinfo.nd.edu/content.cfm?topicid=18782 "Barabási co-edits new book and is awarded computing medal"] , at Notre Dame] . In 2004 he was elected into the Hungarian Academy of Sciences and in 2007 into the <Academia Europaea. [ [http://www.research.neu.edu/news/?id=62 "Northeastern Physicist Albert-László Barabási Receives Prestigious Honor for Exemplary Contributions to Interdisciplinary Science"] , at Northeastern]

elected publications

* Barabási, Albert-László, "Linked: How Everything Is Connected to Everything Else", 2002. ISBN 0-452-28439-2
* Barabási, Albert-László and Réka Albert, [http://arxiv.org/abs/cond-mat/9910332 "Emergence of scaling in random networks"] , "Science", 286:509-512, October 15, 1999
* Barabási, Albert-László and Zoltán Oltvai, "Network Biology", "Nature Reviews Genetics" 5, 101-113 (2004)
* Barabási, Albert-László, Mark Newman and Duncan J. Watts, "The Structure and Dynamics of Networks", 2006. ISBN 0-691-11357-2
* Réka Albert, Hawoong Jeong, and Barabási, Albert-László, [http://arxiv.org/abs/cond-mat/9910332 "The Diameter of the WWW"] , "Nature", 401:130-131, 1999

References

External links

* [http://www.physics.neu.edu/Department/Vtwo/faculty/barabasi.htm Home page] , at Northeastern
* [http://www.nd.edu/~alb/ Home page] , at Notre Dame
* [http://www.nd.edu/~alb/html/publications.html Research Publications]
* [http://www.nd.edu/~networks Center for Complex Network Studies]
* [http://www.nd.edu/~networks/linked.html Linked Homepage]
* [http://tal.forum2.org/linked A review of Linked] , by Pravin Shankar


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