Written by Hsu Tsu-yueh. Photo by Chen Cheng-Ming.
National Cheng Kung University PhD student Cai Yun-Zhan (蔡昀展) was announced as the recipient of the Google PhD Fellowship Program in System and Networking. Recipients of this fellowship are offered a one-year Fellowship award of 10,000 U.S. dollars (around 300,000 TWD) and a connection to a Google Research Mentor. This is the first time for this fellowship to be awarded to scholars in Taiwan.
Cai Yun-Zhan is a student in the Department of Computer Science and Information Engineering, where he studies networking and machine learning. He is one of the few students who is proficient in both areas. In his research, titled “Improving fastness and safety of SDN for era of IoT,” Cai proposed novel mechanisms to solve computing issues faced by the applications of Software-defined Network (SDN). In the coming era of Internet of Things (IoT), faster and safer network mechanisms are a growing point of interest for both academia and industry.
Cai Yun-Zhan was announced as the recipient of Google PhD Fellowship Program in System and Networking.
His outstanding academic performance earned recognition from both NCKU and Google. The Google PhD Fellowship Program only reviews students who are recommended by their institutes, and Cai Yun-Zhan is one of three candidates that stood out at NCKU. Tsai Meng-Hsun (蔡孟勳), Cai’s supervisor and professor in the Department of Computer Science and Information Engineering, praised his research abilities. In the past three years, Cai published one journal paper and nine conference papers and won one best conference paper award.
Cai has taken internships in the Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI), EstiNet Technologies (思銳科技), and Synology Inc.(群暉科技), and has made several contributions to NextEPC, one of the major world-wide open source projects for 5G core networks. He also was the leader of the project “R&D of Network Behavior Security Analyses for IoT Devices on Advanced Edge Switch in an AIOT plus SDN Integrated Platform,” which was sponsored by Ministry of Education and Ministry of Science and Technology. Along with NCKU, National Tsing Hua University and EstiNet were also participants in the project.
Cai proposed novel mechanisms to solve computing issues faced by Software-defined Network (SDN).
Nurturing and maintaining strong relations with the academic community is a top priority at Google, the technology giant stated in their official website for the PhD Fellowship Program. The fellowship description states, “Google PhD Fellowships directly support graduate students as they pursue their PhD, as well as connect them to a Google Research Mentor.”
Computer Science is a field incorporating a wide range of studies, including machine learning, human-computer interaction, networking, AIot, and information security. Cai’s current work focuses on optimizing SDN. He said a lot of the data they are working with is collected from test runs or small scale applications, so there may be some aspects of SDN that he is not well versed in. Google has adopted SDN for their services and is now one of the biggest organizations to have done so. Cai expressed that he wishes to discuss and explore with his Google research mentor how SDN functions at a larger scale. He expects to gain more insights into SDN industry applications.
Cai Yun-Zhan (left) and his supervising professor Tsai Meng-Hsun (right)
Google Taiwan CEO Ma Ta-Kang (馬大康) wrote in the Google Taiwan official blog that by bringing the Google University Relations Program to Taiwan, the company aims to provide support to promising PhD candidates whose research falls within fields related to computer science. They hope to help students build interpersonal connections in the industry and inspire them in their innovation process.