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Douglas Engelbart, father of computer mouse passes away

Los Angeles, PTI | Updated : 04 July 2013, 01:19 PM

US tech visionary Douglas Engelbart, whose invention of computer mouse revolutionised personal computing, has died at the age of 88.

Engelbart, who laid out a vision of the Internet and emailing decades before others brought those ideas to the market, died of acute kidney failure at his California home.

Engelbart, who was born on January 30, 1925, invented the computer mouse in 1963 in his research lab at Stanford Research Institute (now SRI International), for which the patent was issued in 1970.

Engelbart's work is the very foundation of personal computing and the Internet. He was world famous for his invention of the computer mouse and the origins of interactive computing, Doug Engelbart Institute said in a statement.

"Doug was a giant who made the world a much better place and who deeply touched those of us who knew him," said Curtis R Carlson, president and CEO of SRI.

"Doug's legacy is immense - anyone in the world who uses a mouse or enjoys the productive benefits of a personal computer is indebted to him," Carlson said.

Engelbart joined SRI International in 1957 and led the organisation's Augmentation Research Center (ARC) from 1959 to 1977, working with other computing pioneers to develop innovations such as display editing, on-line processing, linking and in-file object addressing, use of multiple windows, hypermedia, and context-sensitive help.

Engelbart's debut of his innovations on December 9, 1968 became known as the "Mother of All Demos."

The ARC became the second node of the ARPANET – the predecessor to the Internet - in 1969.

Engelbart received the National Medal of Technology in 2000, the Lemelson-MIT Prize in 1997, and the Turing Award, also in 1997.

The basic idea for the mouse first came to him in 1961 while sitting in a conference session on computer graphics, his mind mulling over the challenge of making interactive computing more efficient.

First Published: Thursday, July 04, 2013 01:15 PM
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