Douglas S. Kerr

Associate Professor Emeritus

My general research interests are in the database area. At this time I am working on a project with Prof. Martin Caffrey in Chemistry to create a web-based relational database of information about lipid (fats) phases. I have done work in performance measurement and in database machines. I am also interested in software engineering, particularly in database design.

Lipid phase data compilation. The wealth of thermodynamic data available on lipids is presently scattered throughout the literature. We are in the process of compiling these data in two parts. The first is a tabulation of all known phase transitions and transition temperatures and enthalpies for lipids in the dry and in the partially and fully hydrated states. The database, LIPIDAT has been available on the Web since August 1997. Work is continuing to make it easier to use and to allow users to enter their own data. The second part concerns lipid miscibility where data are presented in the form of temperature/pressure-composition phase diagrams.

Database Machines. Earlier I was involved in the design and implementation of a multicomputer database machine, called the Multi-Backend Database System (MBDS). The idea was to develop an architecture that allows a database to grow without having to obtain larger and larger mainframes, but instead by adding more backends.

Performance Measurement. After the work on MDBS, I extended my interests to the problem of file service in a workstation environment such as the one developed here at OSU. I think this problem is an interesting extension to the one of database machines. In particular, we looked at performance measurement and benchmarking using our workstations.

Software Engineering - Database Design. My final interest is in the problems of software engineering at the practical level. We used several software engineering techniques in the implementation of MBDS and have found some to be quite useful. I have also been involved in several database design projects.

Courses I Have Taught Most Recently

My schedule for this quarter.

Selected Publications and Presentations

M. Caffrey, D. Kerr, et al, "LIPIDAT: a Database of Lipid Transition Types, Temperatures and Enthalpy Changes: an Update," 15th International CODATA Conference, Tsukuba, Japan, July 1996.

M. Fortin and D. Kerr, "A Method to Determine Page Reference Patterns in a Monitored Computer Process," Proceedings of the Pittsburgh Conference on Modeling and Simulation, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, May 1991, pp. 1514-1520.

M. Fortin, S. Kao, and D. Kerr, "Benchmarking Workstations from the User's Perspective: Taking into Account the Environment," Proceedings of the Pittsburgh Conference on Modeling and Simulation, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, May 1989, pp. 861-869.

D. Kerr, S. Demurjian, D. Hsiao, J. Menon, P. Strawser, R. Tekampe, R. Watson, and J. Trimble, "Performance Evaluation of Database System in Multiple Backend Configurations," Database Machines, Proceedings of the Fourth International Workshop on Database Machines, eds., DeWitt and Boral, Springer-Verlag, 1985, pp. 91-111.

My email address is <>
Original: August 22, 1995
Revised: May 23, 2005