Extended Bio

audio Somali Chaterji (pronounced shoh-MAH-lee CHA-ter-jee) is an Assistant Professor in the College of Engineering and College of Agriculture at Purdue University. She did her PhD in Biomedical Engineering from Purdue, winning the Chorafas Dissertation Award and the Future Faculty Fellowship. She followed this up with a postdoc in Biomedical Engineering from UT Austin and another postdoc in Computer Science from Purdue. During this time, she received her first NIH-R01 grant (BDMA Study Section). She also received the Seed-for-Success Award from Purdue University's Excellence in Research Awards program in recognition of this NIH R01 award in 2016. This NIH award focuses on developing cyberinfrastructure for the world's largest metagenomics repository, MG-RAST, housed in Argonne National Laboratory in Chicago. Essentially, this is what resulted in her innovations in cloud database technologies, optimizing performance normalized by cost. Read more about this innovation here and here, resulting in 1 awarded patent on database optimization (granted without any action required by the USPTO, i.e., a "first action allowance" in 2022) and multiple patent-pending technologies available for licensing by Purdue's Office of Technology Commercialization (OTC).

She leads ICAN at Purdue. She has received funding from NIH (R01), DOD (ARL), NSF (CISE-CNS, CAREER), NIFA, as well as private industries like Amazon and Adobe Research. She is an Associate Editor of BMC Bioinformatics and of Frontiers in High Performance Computing (Cloud Computing). She also serves on the editorial board of the Computational and Structural Biotechnology journal. Dr. Chaterji also serves on Program Committees of prestigious conferences in IoT, computer systems, machine learning, and computational genomics like Usenix ATC (USENIX Annual Technical Conference), EuroSys (European chapter of ACM SIGOPS), HotStorage (Hot Topics in (Computational) Storage and File Systems, Distinguished PC Member), Middleware, ICML (International Conference on Machine Learning), NeurIPS (Neural Information Processing Systems), and HiCOMB (IEEE International Workshop on High Performance Computational Biology). She reviews for high impact journals in computer systems and genomics such as Transactions on Networking, Genome Biology, Nucleic Acids Research, Nature Biotechnology, Nature Scientific Reports, and the BMC Series. She won the CAREER award from NSF’s Computing Directorate in January 2022.

Dr. Chaterji is a technology commercialization enthusiast and serves as the co-founder and CEO of a cloud computing startup, KeyByte, which was started in 2021. She has consulted for the IC2 Institute at the University of Texas at Austin. She is at the forefront of curriculum design in applied machine learning and has developed three new courses for Data Engineering in IoT and Genomics (two 1-credit courses and one 3-credit course), which are being offered through a USDA Higher Education Challenge grant (that started in 2020). She offered a new course (Spring 2022) on algorithms for IoT and computer vision, building on her new discoveries in edge platforms for IoT and approximate computer vision. She is offering a new independent study course in Fall 2022 on Edge Computing and IoT, building an exciting new data engineering curriculum for ML practitioners and data engineering enthusiasts.

Somali also goes by her childhood alias Sonata Chaterji, Sonata from Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata that her mom loves. Read more about her from this recent Purdue's CoE blog.

Here is succinct vision statement for Dr. Chaterji's research, here are her lab's applied ML research thrusts, here are short videos on her research highlights (from 2020).