Marvin V. Zelkowitz
Professor Emeritus
Department of Computer Science
and Institute for Advanced Computer Studies
University of Maryland
College Park, Maryland 20742
Phone: (301) 405- 2690
Fax: (301) 405-3691

Current Positions and Activities:

Note to prospective graduate students: As a Professor Emeritus, I no longer have an active research program at the University of Maryland. Therefore, please do not send email asking for consideration as a Graduate Research Assistant.


Academic Degree: MS, Ph.D., Cornell University , 1969, 1971. BS, Mathematics, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, 1967.

Complete Vitae

List of publications

A new February 2020 ebook on the evolution of computer technology from 1960 until the 2000s. See more complete description below.

See also

Activities (Partial list)

Research Interests

Technology transfer

Understanding how organizations, such as NASA e.g., NASA/GSFC Software Engineering Laboratory, develop and understand new technology.

Experimentation and data collection are becoming accepted practices within the software engineering community in order to determine the effectiveness of various software development practices.

Cyber security

Security depends upon not only implementing effective security policies, but also implementing standard algorithms correctly. Many security flaws (e.g., viruses, worms, trojan horses) are not the work of poor algorithm design, but of garden-variety poor programming practices and validation.

Book publishing

The Golden Age of Computer Technology: Through the Eyes of an Aging Geek Available as a Kindle ebook on, February 2020.

This book is an autobiographical journey of my 50 years with computers starting in 1962 where I instill in the reader what it was like to be an early generation computer scientist. While not part of the original generation of computer technicians, such as Grace Hopper, John Backus, Alan Turing, John von Neumann, and numerous others from the 1950s, I am part of the generation that saw and participated in the emergence of the computer as the dominant technology in everyday life. As more of us from the 1960s and 1970s retire, it is important to chronicle the technology of the latter part of the twentieth century. In this book I show how the technology has evolved and how the academic world reacted to it. Why did certain things happen the way that they did? What have we done right and what we have done wrong?

As computers become smarter and more autonomous, the underlying technology is becoming more obscure. Push On and the machine starts. Missing is an understanding of what the machine does before the desktop opens and login screen appears. How does the machine actually work?

We continue to make the same mistakes repeatedly. Each new generation of hardware and software repeats the errors of the previous generation. Solutions to programing issues I remember from the late 1960s still occur in new software today. My smartphone, a device that was beyond the imagination of the writers of Star Trek in the 1960s is only a year old and already obsolete. Yet it frequently updates versions of many applications sometimes daily. We still can't write programs that work reliably. The field doesn't seem to have as much fun as it used to. Computer Science is now a mature industry. Some of the chaos and enjoyment of programming and running these earlier machines is gone.

Programming Languages: Design and Implementation, Fourth Edition by T. Pratt and M. V. Zelkowitz, Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, NJ, (2001) ISBN 0-13-027678-2.

This is the fourth edition to this sophomore/junior level textbook which describes various programming languages from the point of view of the underlying implementation of those languages. This fourth edition updates the 1995 edition with anintroduction to the World Wide Web, including Perl, Java, HTML, and short introduction to cgi scripts.

Advances in Computers Edited by Marvin V. Zelkowitz, Elsevier Inc., Volumes 40-83 (1995-2011).

This is the longest continuous published anthology of computer science articles. Each volumes contains from 5 to 7 in depth articles about current topics of interest. (Chapters published from volume 46 (1998) through volume 83 (2011)).

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