B.S. 1975 (U. of Mass.), M.S. 1976 (U. of Mass.), Ph.D. 1981 (Stanford)
Chris Heegard was born in Pasadena, California, on October 4, 1953. He received the BS and the MS degrees in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA in 1975 and 1976, respectively, the Ph.D. degree in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University, Palo Alto, CA, in 1981.
From 1976-1978, he was an R&D Engineer at Linkabit Corp., San Diego, CA, where he worked on the development of a packet switched satellite modem and several sequential decoders for the decoding of convolutional codes.
In 1981, he joined the faculty of the School of Electrical Engineering, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY, as an Assistant Professor; he was appointed to Associate Professor, with tenure, and was a Full Professor.At Cornell, Professor Heegard taught courses in digital communications, error control codes, information theory, detection and estimation theory, digital systems and audio engineering. His current research interests include: information, coding and communication theory, algorithms for digital communications, coding for computer memory systems, signal processing and error-control in optical and magnetic recording systems, audio and video signal compression, algebraic geometric coding theory and symbolic and numerical computer methods.
Dr. Heegard has been an active member of the consulting community. He has worked on problems of digital HDTV and cable TV transmission, DSP and hardware based trellis coded modems, modulation and error-control for optical LANs, and modulation and coding for recording systems. He is the inventor on several patents.
He is the founder and chief scientist for Native Intelligence , a digital communications company that developed DigComT.
Beginning in August of 1997, Dr. Heegard was the CEO and Principal Scientist of Alantro Communications, Inc., Santa Rosa California. Alantro Communications was a fabless semiconductor company specializing in physical-layer communications with a particular expertise in forward error correction (FEC). The technology is vital in: high-speed wireless networking (IEEE 802.11/WiFi), cable modem, digital-TV, digital subscriber line and satellite/terrestrial wireless. On September 8, 2000, Alantro Communications was purchased by Texas Instruments. For two years, Chris Heegard was the CTO for the Home and Wireless Networking group of T.I. and was a Fellow of Texas Instruments, elected in 2000.
In 2002, Dr. Heegard gave a lecture at the Mathematical Sciences Research Institute at UC, Berkeley. The lecture, "Information Theory and Spread Spectrum Communications", can be viewed here.
In 1984, Dr. Heegard received the Presidential Young Investigator Award from the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the IBM Faculty Development Award. He has ongoing research support from the NSF as well as ARO and NSA. Chris has been involved in the organization of several IEEE workshops and symposia. In 1986, he was elected to the Board of Governors of the Information Theory Society of the IEEE and reelected in 1989. In 1994 he was the President of the IT Society. In January of 1999, Chris published, with co-author Stephen B. Wicker, the first book on Turbo Coding. He is a Fellow of the IEEE, and a member of Eta Kappa Nu.
Recently, Chris has become involved in ranching in Cottage Grove, Oregon; he is also an independent investor, consultant, a wedding host and a sailor . He currently resides near Key West, FL.
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