Yuan Yao

Ph.D. Student
Electrical Engineering Department
University of Southern California
Advisor: Professor Leana Golubchik
Email Address: yuanyao AT usc DOT edu

Research Interests

Performance Modeling and Analysis
Use of mathematical and algorithmic methods in performance modeling and analysis of state of the art computer systems and applications, such as peer-to-peer systems, wireless sensor systems, and data centers.

Performance Oriented Design
Understanding of underlying performance trade-offs and performance-oriented design of simple yet effective algorithms for computer systems and distributed applications.


Master of Science, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA,
Electrical Engineering, 2005 to 2006
GPA: 4.0/4.0

Bachelor of Science, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan China,
Measurement and Control/Computer Science, 2000-2004
GPA: 85/100 Rank: Top 5%

Research Projects

Power Cost Reduction in Large Scale Distributed Computing
In this project we try to reduce power cost of large scale distributed computing failities, while maintaining quality of service. We leverage both temporal and spatial differenes of power prices and workload and formulate it as an stochastic optimization problem. We provide distributed solutions to this problem and show that it can result in significant power cost savings.
Anomaly Detection in Sensor Systems
In this project we develop automated algorithms for identifying interesting events(termed anomalies) in sensor data. The algorithms we develop are able to accurately detect short term and long term anomalies without prior knowledge of anomaly characteristics. These algorithms are also robust to sensor faults and operate in (near) real time.

Peer-to-peer Streaming Systems
In this project we study performance trade-offs in structured peer-to-peer intended for streaming application. We design streaming algorithms based on multi-tree and hypercube structures. These algorithms achieve provable quality-of-service guarantees, and specifically hiccup free video streaming with low start-up delay and low buffer space requirements.


Y. Yao, L. Huang, A. Sharma, L. Golubchik and M. Neely "Data Centers Power Reduction: A Two Time Scale Approach for Delay Tolerant Workloads", IEEE INFOCOM 2012.
Y. Yao, L. Huang, A. Sharma, L. Golubchik and M. Neely "Power Cost Reduction in Distributed Data Centers: A Two Time Scale Approach", Submitted to IEEE Transaction on Parallel and Distributed Computing
Y. Yao, A. Sharma, L. Golubchik and R. Govindan "Online Anomaly Detection for Sensor Systems: a Simple and Efficient Approach" In Performance Evaluation, Vol 67, Issue 11, 2010.
A. Chow, L. Golubchik, S. Khuller and Y. Yao "On the Tradeoff between Playback Delay and Buffer Space in Streaming", in IEEE IPDPS 2009.
A. Chow, L. Golubchik, S. Khuller and Y. Yao "On Multi-Tree and Hypercube based Streaming", Journal of Parallel and Distributed Computing, Vol 72, Issue 3, 2012.


Teaching Assistant
Analysis of Algorithms and Introduction to Computer Networks, University of Southern California, 2006 to now

Research Assistant
Computer Science Department, University of Southern California, 2006 to 2008

Graduate Level Course Work

Modeling and Analysis
Queueing Theory, Probabilistic Methods in Computer Systems Modeling, Algorithm Design

Mathematics and Statistics
Introduction to Mathematical Statistics(a,b), Numerical Analysis and Computation

Computer Networks
Design and Analysis of Computer Networks , Topics in Computer Networks and Distributed Systems, Advanced Topics in Computer Networks

Linear System Theory, Linear Control Theory

Professional Activities

External Reviewer, Sigmetrics/Performance 2009

External Reviewer, Sigmetrics 2008, 2010

External Reviewer, Performance 2008, 2010, 2011


IFIP Performance Student Travel Grant 2010

IEEE IPDPS Student Travel Grant 2008

Honored Graduate, Huazhong University of Science and Technology 2004

Honored Student, Huazhong University of Science and Technology 2000-2004

You can e-mail me at: yuanyao AT usc DOT edu