Simon F. V. Goldsmith's Grown Up Web Page (now with live links!)


I've been happily employed at Coverity since July 2008.

In 2008 / 2009 (depending on how you count it) I finished my Ph.D. dissertation at UC Berkeley. Alex Aiken was my adviser.

Ph.D. Research

My Ph.D. research started with trend-prof, a tool that measures the empirical computational complexity of C/C++ programs. For each basic block (more or less a line of source code), trend-prof constructs a model that predicts how many times that basic block is executed as a (linear or power law) function of input size or other features the user specifies. These models measure how the code scales on realistic inputs. Comparing these models to the programmer's expectations or to theoretical asymptotic bounds can reveal performance bugs, confirm that a program scales as expected, or show that a program beats its worst case bound for real-world inputs. This research is joint work with Alex Aiken and Daniel Wilkerson.


Measuring Empirical Computational Complexity. (pdf) (UC Berkeley tech report -- with fancy cover sheet!) Simon F. Goldsmith. Ph.D. thesis. University of California, Berkeley. 2009.

Measuring Empirical Computational Complexity. (pdf) S. F. Goldsmith, A. Aiken, and D. S. Wilkerson. In Proceedings of the Symposium on Foundations of Software Engineering (acceptance rate 43/251; 20 other papers accepted as posters), September 2007. Slides (pdf) from my FSE talk. Better Slides (pdf) from the CodeCon talk. Link to this paper at ACM

Relational Queries Over Program Traces (pdf) S. Goldsmith, R. O'Callahan, and A. Aiken. In Proceedings of the 2005 Conference on Object-Oriented Programming, Systems, Languages and Applications (acceptance rate: 29/142), October 2005. (Replaces the tech report from spring of 2004.) Slides (pdf) from my OOPSLA talk. Link to this paper at ACM .


My Berkeley email address is no more. I now get my spam at my first name dot my last name at the ol' gee mail.


I have a BS in computer science, some fond memories, and a eclectic bunch of friends from Carnegie Mellon University.

I've been playing some bridge lately. I used to play a lot of go, but it's been a while.

I used to play nethack. I've recovered the amulet of Yendor and ascended to demigodhood.

I like to read some subset of Penny Arcade, The New York Times, Schneier on Security, Lambda the Ultimate, Joel on Software when I have a chance.


"The ultimate weakness of violence is that it is a descending spiral, begetting the very thing it seeks to destroy. Instead of diminishing evil, it multiplies it. Through violence you may murder the liar, but you cannot murder the lie, nor establish the truth. Through violence you murder the hater, but you do not murder hate. In fact, violence merely increases hate.... Returning violence for violence multiples violence, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that. "
--Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

"The large print giveth and the small print taketh away."
--Tom Waits

"It is better to light even a single candle than to curse the darkness."
--(general idea stolen from a) Chinese Proverb

"An eye for a eye will make the whole world go blind."
--Mohandas Gandhi

"If there is a problem you cannot solve, there is an easier problem you can solve: find it."
--Pólya György

"Where we went wrong was getting on a boat. We can move, of course, change direction, rattle about, but our movement is contained within a larger one that carries us along as inexorably as the wind and current..."
--Tom Stoppard, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead

"...and I just try to laugh at whatever life brings
'cuz when I look down, I just miss all the good stuff
and when I look up, I just trip over things."
--Ani Difranco