Prof, Computer Science Dept
Department of Computer Science
Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences
New York University
Also, Associate director,
251 Mercer Street
New York, NY 10012, U.S.A.
212.998.3086/212.998.3078 (voice) 212.995-4123 (fax)
Email (the best way to reach me)
My family consists of
(my wife who is a multimedia artist),
(born 1988, who is the inspiration for my puzzle character Liane
and Tyler (born 1994, once an aspiring food chemist, currently
a serious basketball
enthusiast, and a potential computer scientist. In eighth grade, he presented
this irreverent view of the
- I do research in biological
computing (including experimental design),
pattern recognition and querying in trees
and graphs, pattern discovery in time series,
cryptographic file systems,
database tuning, and wireless.
See Research Activity in brief.
If you want a truly stimulating reading experience, try my
resume in pdf.
- For excerpts
of my book (with journalist Cathy
Lazere) of biographies of great computer scientists, see
Out of Their Minds: the lives and discoveries of 15
great computer scientists (book published by Copernicus/Springer Verlag).
In 2010, we published
a book about the ongoing synthesis between computing and biology.
Here is a little
video preview (you will have to poke around to find it)
- I also have had the pleasure of writing a mathematical puzzle
column for Dr. Dobb's Journal
whose readers are very sharp and continue to write the Puzzling
for Scientific American .
The puzzle-writing has led to
six books about a mathematical detective
named Dr. Ecco.
Try them if you dare.
Professionally, I have written two books about database tuning.
The second, co-authored with Philippe Bonnet, appears in May, 2002
and is called Database Tuning: principles, experiments, and
troubleshooting techniques (published by Morgan Kaufmann).
You can find the slides from our Sigmod and VLDB 2002 presentations
More recently, I have written a book with my excellent PhD student
Yunyue Zhu entitled
High Performance Discovery in Time Series: techniques and case studies
published by Springer Verlag Publishers in June 2004.
With the extremely energetic Jason Wang and
other colleagues, I have helped co-edit two books
Pattern Discovery in Biomolecular Data:
Tools, Techniques, and Applications
Jason Wang, Bruce Shapiro, and Dennis Shasha (Eds.)
Oxford University Press, November, 1999.
Data Mining in Bioinformatics
J. T. L. Wang, M. J. Zaki, H. T. T. Toivonen and D. Shasha (eds.),
In my work with biologists, I find myself needing statistics.
Because I find that academic statistics books tend to make the subject
overly complex and lay statistics books tend to gloss assumptions
(e.g. about normality)
Manda Wilson and I have written a short book entitled
Statistics is Easy! that uses a resampling approach to
statistics (thus avoiding distribution assumptions)
and explains most of the concepts using counting.
The book also contains a link to python code that implements
the statistics we discuss in the book.
Please take a look at an
Because I was so fascinated by the Russian students
we've had at NYU, I have co-authored with Marina Shron (a playwright
born in St. Petersburg), Red Blues: voices from
the last wave of Russian immigrants .
Here is an excerpt from that book.
- Here is a link to the
technical reports offered by the department. (You won't find much of my
stuff there, since I usually go straight for conference publications.)
NYU Computer Science Tech Reports
Here is a brief biography of
Alfred Shasha, my father.
Inspired by that story and by others like it,
Tamar Morad, my brother Robert Shasha, and I wrote a book of oral
Iraq's Last Jews.
whose German translation you can find
Galina Miklosic has decided to do
of this page for his own amusement.