David Black-Schaffer

Short presentation

My research focuses on approaches for moving data more efficiently in computer systems, using both software and hardware techniques. Our results have been commercialized through a startup and incorporated in industry standards. Prior to joining Uppsala, I contributed to the OpenCL standard for heterogeneous computation while working at Apple, Inc. I have received multiple awards for my teaching, and lead a startup that helped over 80,000 students.


  • active teaching
  • commercialization
  • computer architecture
  • efficiency
  • memory systems
  • performance
  • runtimes
  • scheduling
  • simulation


I received my PhD in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University in 2008. My PhD thesis was on programming for real-time embedded processing on many-core processors in the Concurrent VLSI Architecture Group working with William Dally. After my PhD I worked at Apple on the development of the first OpenCL implementation for heterogeneous parallel processing across CPUs and GPUs, and then as a postdoc researcher in computer architecture in the Dept. of Information Technology at Uppsala University. I was appointed assistant professor in 2010 in the architecture research group at Uppsala looking at parallel programming systems and optimizations as part of the UPMARC research center. I received the docent title in 2014 and a promotion to full professor in 2017.

At Uppsala University, I was the Research Responsible Professor for the Computer Architecture and Communications Systems program from 2020-2022, the head of the Division of Computer Systems from 2022, and the department representative to the faculty Advisory Committee for Research since 2021.

I have been very active in flipped-classroom teaching. In particular, I lead the ScalableLearning project from 2012-2020, which developed an online system to support at-home and in-class flipped classroom teaching used by over 80,000 students. My active teaching techniques have been recognized by the Uppsala Engineering and Science Student Union Pedagogical Prize (2012), the Uppsala University Pedagogical Prize (2016), and the Uppsala Technical Physics Students' Teaching Award (2019).

I have also worked to bring my research results into industry, both through startups and industrial collaboration. Together with my colleague Erik Hagersten, we commercialized our new power-efficient memory system designs, resulting in their being acquired by a major international corporation. I have also worked with my colleague Chang Hyun Park and collaborators at Arm Ltd., in the UK, to get our memory system designs into the specification for future Arm processors.

Google Scholar Citations

Grants and Awards




This text is not available in English, therefore the Swedish version is shown.

My research focuses on improving efficiency in computers by making the memory system more intelligent. Our work includes more clever ways of moving and placing data in the memory system, integrating data movement with the processor core itself, adapting runtime schedules for better data movement, and the analysis and modeling of data movement.


Recent publications

All publications





Data sets

David Black-Schaffer