Q & A with New CoE Faculty: Shumo Chu

Friday, October 23, 2020
UC Santa Barbara’s College of Engineering will welcome seven new faculty throughout the fall quarter, including Shumo Chu, who is joining the Computer Science Department as an assistant professor. He received his bachelor’s degree in software engineering from Wuhan University and completed his PhD in computer science at the University of Washington. 
Recently, we asked him some questions to learn more about him, and here is what he had to say.  
Q: What is the focus of your research?
A: My research focus on database systems, programming languages, and applied cryptography.
Q: How did you get interested in these specific fields of research?
A: I like to build systems that have strong theoretical guarantees. Thus, I apply formal methods and cryptographic techniques to database systems and blockchain systems.
Q: What are the real-world implications of your research?
A: The open sourced project (Cosette) from my research has many users (>400 github stars) and has been deployed in University of Washington's for automated grading. My work at Algorand, a python language binding for smart contracts, has been used by smart contract developers.
Q: How excited are you to join your department?
A: I am super excited to join the UCSB. I look forward to collaborating with many wonderful colleagues here.
Q: What were some of the top reasons why you wanted to work at UCSB?
A: I wanted to work here for many reasons. For example, the location is great and the food is good here.  But most importantly, I can feel that the department and school have a supportive and inclusive culture.
Q: How are you adjusting to your new role during these unprecedented times?
A: I am used to doing remote collaboration, and remote advising is not a big problem for me. Teaching is a bit challenging because I like the interactions that I get during teaching and still am figuring out how to do this effectively on Zoom.
Q: Have you discovered a favorite beach or found a new favorite restaurant since you’ve moved to the area?
A: Yes, I like Devereux Beach. My new favorite restaurant is Loquita. 
Q: Tell us something interesting about yourself unrelated to work and research.
A: I like downhill skiing and am trying to learn how to surf.  I also cook occasionally when I have time.
Shumo Chu

Shumo Chu, assistant professor of computer science