• unknown (b.)


Known as the “father” of SGML and “grandfather” of HTML and the World Wide Web, he co-invented the concept of markup languages. He is a graduate of Columbia College and holds a J.D. degree from Harvard Law School. He joined IBM in November 1967; and in 1969 while heading up a small team at IBM’s Cambridge Scientific Center, he developed the first markup language, called Generalized Markup Language, or GML. While he coined the term GML to be an anagram for the three researchers - himself, Ed Mosher and Ray Lorie who worked on the project; the next version of the language, was called Standard Generalized Markup Language (SGML). In 1975, he moved from Cambridge, Massachusetts to Silicon Valley and became a product planner at the IBM’s Almaden Research Center. There, he convinced IBM's executives to deploy GML commercially in 1978 as part of IBM's Document Composition Facility product. Development informally began that year on what ultimately became the SGML standard. He wrote the first SGML parser, ARCSGML that could read and check the accuracy of the Markup code; and went on working to turn SGML into the ISO 8879 standard in 1986. He served as editor on the standardization committee and eventually he became Chair of the SGML committee. At the end of 1980’s Tim Berners-Lee and Robert Caillau created HTML, basing their hypertext publishing language namely on SGML. HTML as a subset of SGML is easy to learn, but not nearly as powerful. Their system used a NeXT computer and incorporated the concept of hyperlinks. Tim realized the need for a Markup language that was easy to use and implemented it into their system. In 1991 the Web debuted on the Internet and it was the simplicity of HTML that made it grow exponentially. He is the author of The SGML Handbook, Oxford University Press (1991), ISBN 0-19-853737-9; SGML Buyer's Guide, Prentice Hall (1998), ISBN 0-13-681511-1; and XML Handbook, Prentice Hall (1998), ISBN 0-13-081152-1. He is an honorary Fellow of the Society for Technical Communication, and holds the Printing Industries of America Gutenberg Award. From 2000 - 2005 he served as a Director of Innodata Isogen, Inc. and in 2006 he became an advisor to ObjectBuilders, a privately-held company that employs XML in its patented methodology for custom application development. He is an independent consultant and speaker based in Belmont, California.