Daniel Jackson (computer scientist)

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Daniel Jackson
Institutions Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Alma mater
Doctoral advisor John Guttag
Known for Lightweight formal methods, and the Alloy specification language

Daniel Jackson (born 1963) is a Professor of Computer Science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). He is the principal designer of the Alloy modelling language, and author of the book Software Abstractions: Logic, Language, and Analysis.[1]


Jackson was born in London, England, in 1963.[2] He studied physics at Oxford University, receiving an MA in 1984. After completing his MA, Jackson worked for two years as a software engineer at Logica UK Ltd. He then returned to academia to study computer science at MIT, where he received an SM in 1988, and a PhD in 1992. Following the completion of his doctorate Jackson took up a position as an Assistant Professor of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University, which he held until 1997.[3] He has been on the faculty of the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at MIT since 1997. Jackson is also a photographer, and has an interest in the straight photography style. The MIT Museum commissioned a series of photographs of MIT laboratories from him, displayed from May to December 2012, to accompany an exhibit of images by Berenice Abbott.

Jackson is the son of software engineering researcher Michael A. Jackson,[4] developer of Jackson Structured Programming (JSP), Jackson System Development (JSD), and the Problem Frames Approach.


Jackson's research is broadly concerned with improving the dependability of software. He is a proponent of lightweight formal methods.[5] Jackson and his students developed the Alloy language and its associated Alloy Analyzer analysis tool to provide support for lightweight specification and modelling efforts.[6]

Between 2004 and 2007, Jackson chaired a multi-year United States National Research Council study on dependable systems.[7]

Selected publications


  1. Jackson, Daniel (April 2006). Software Abstractions: Logic, Language, and Analysis. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. ISBN 0-262-10114-9. Retrieved 2009-01-10.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. Jackson, Daniel. "DANIEL JACKSON". Straight Photography by Daniel Jackson. Retrieved 2009-01-09.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. "Prof. Daniel Jackson". CSAIL Software Design Group. Retrieved 2009-01-09.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. Jackson, Daniel. "Daniel Jackson". CSAIL Faculty Pages. Retrieved 2009-01-09.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. Lua error in Module:Citation/CS1/Identifiers at line 47: attempt to index field 'wikibase' (a nil value).
  6. Lua error in Module:Citation/CS1/Identifiers at line 47: attempt to index field 'wikibase' (a nil value).
  7. "Sufficient Evidence? Building Certifiably Dependable Systems". Computer Science and Telecommunications Board. The National Academies. Retrieved 2009-01-09.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>

External links