Neha Agarwal

PhD, University of Michigan

Computer Architecture, Operating Systems


I am working full-time at Google. I recently defended my PhD thesis. I studied computer architecture and opertaing systems in CSE department at University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. My PhD advisor is Prof. Tom Wenisch. I also did Masters in CSE from University of Michigan in 2013 and Bachelors (B.Tech Honors) in Electrical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay (IITB), India in 2011.

Research: Heterogeneous Memory Management

In my thesis, I have primarily focussed on heterogeneous memory management at both hardware and operating systems abstraction level. Heterogeneity is a common feature of computer systems ranging from smartphones, data-centers to supercomputers, composed of different memory technologies and processor types. Main memory technology contributes to significant cost of the overall system cost. Hence, making decisions about memory management in such heterogeneous eco-system is critical to maximizing performance per dollar. Heterogeneous memory systems pose multi-fold challenges on decisions about data placement and movement that have to be made at application runtime – preferably in an application-transparent manner – while considering difference in bandwidths, latencies, and costs-per-bit of different memory technologies.
In my research I tackle memory management of two categories of heterogeneous systems: a) CPU-GPU systems with a unified virtual address space, b) Cloud computing platforms that will deploy cheaper but slower memory technologies along with DRAMs to increase perf/dollar. My research shows that it is possible to improve programmability and save overall system cost while performing close to optimal.

Work Experience

1. Google, Software Engineer in Sunnyvale, June 2017 - present.
2. Google, Software Engineering Intern in Mountain View, for the Summer 2015.
3. NVIDIA, Architecture Research Group in Austin for the Winter and Summer 2014.
4. ARM, Systems Research Group in Cambridge, United Kingdom for the Fall 2013.

PhD is Kung-Fu'ing'


I am an avid traveller. I have been to 86 cities across 16 countries :). Listing countries continent wise: Asia: India, Japan; Africa: Egypt, Morocco; Europe: Turkey, Switzerland, Germany, France, Italy, Vatican, Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, and United Kingdom; North America: United States and Mexico. Thus, continent count is 4 so far, 3 more to come! I have also covered 50% of the states in India! I am thankful to have born in a country with so many diversities in various aspects of life!


I love to try out living in new places. Since, childhood I have lived in 8 cities. In India, I have lived in Allahabad, Jaipur, Jabalpur and Bombay. Outside India, I have lived in Lausanne-Switzerland; Cambridge-United kingdom; Ann Arbor, Austin, and Palo Alto-United States. Thanks to my parents for making me adaptable to new living conditions since childhood!


Interesting Talks/Readings

1."How to Have a Bad Career in Research/Academia", by David A. Patterson.
2."The Power of Abstraction", by Barbara Liskov.
3."How to read a paper", by S. Keshav
4."How to write a great research paper", by Simon Peyton Jones
5."How to write technical paper reviews", by Shriram Krishnamurthi