Landon Cox | Duke University

Updated genealogy

I updated my academic genealogy last night. The lineage now traces back 23 advisors to Tartaglia, with a few Nobel Laureates, Newton, and Galileo along the way. Many thanks to Rajesh Balan, Mark Corner, Jason Flinn, and Dushyanth Narayanan for doing all of the legwork.

As Nikita Borisov observed on G+, there is a shocking lack of institutional diversity in my line relative to others, with a remarkable run of 14 straight Cambridge-trained researchers. After the Cambridge run, things head to Italy, where the line terminates with Niccolò Fontana Tartaglia. Apparently he was self-taught.

I’m sure there are social-network researchers who look at such things, but it would be fascinating to know if there are any least-common ancestors from different branches within computer systems or sub-fields within computer science. It would also be amazing if someone were able to detect common intellectual or stylistic DNA within the line. My work certainly shares traits with the work of my academic siblings, cousins, and aunts/uncles, but who knows if less obvious similarities are present further up the line.