Weekend Watcher: Capturing Silicon Valley's Stories - 4 At A Time
Silicon Valley is getting better at paying attention to its own culture and history--and noticing that there are many giants still walking among us. Recently, the Computer History Museum celebrated 4 key technologists at its 2007 Fellow Awards fund raising event.
It was a great event, I took my son Matt with me so that he could see some of our living history, the people that have helped make Silicon Valley into the world's innovation engine. We were guests of Microsoft, one of the sponsors of the event.
Morris Chang helped create the fabless chip industry. And in doing so, he created a massive innovation platform by enabling small bands of chip designers to buy production time as they needed it. Chip companies no longer needed to own and maintain hugely expensive chip fabs.
John Hennessy helped develop the RISC microprocessor, whose features are found in all modern microprocessors. As president of Stanford University, he has made huge contributions to education, and the creation of a student body that has gone on to found many of Silicon Valley's largest companies. And his work has helped generate huge licensing revenue for the university.
David Patterson made important contributions to microprocessor design and RAID data storage technologies. As head of Computer Science at the University of California at Berkeley, he has helped educate generations of computer engineers.
Charles Thacker helped create the personal computer. His work at Xerox Palo Alto Research Center led to the Alto, the machine that inspired Apple Computer and featured a windows graphical user interface. He co-developed Ethernet and also the laser printer.
Tags: Morris Chang, John Hennessy, David A. Patterson, Charles Thacker, John Hennessy, David Patterson, Charles Thacker