• 1957 March 02
    (b.) - ?


An American inventor and a computer engineer, he is credited with helping to launch the personal computer age with work that made the machines more accessible and powerful. He was part of the team that developed the ISA bus, and in 1999 he led a design team at IBM's Austin, Texas lab in making a one-gigahertz computer processor chip. Born in Jefferson City, Tennessee, as a boy, he excelled in many different areas, standing out as a gifted athlete and an extremely smart student who graduated with straight A's from Jefferson City High School. In 1979, he graduated at the top of his class with a Bachelor's degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Tennessee. He holds a Master's degree in Electrical Engineering from Florida Atlantic University (1982) and a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University (1992). After college he joined IBM, eventually becoming CTO for IBM Middle East and Africa. In 2004 he became Vice President overseeing IBM?s Almaden Research Center in San Jose, California. In 1981 while at IBM, he worked closely with colleague, Dennis Moeller, developing the new Industry Standard Architecture (ISA) systems bus, a new system for peripheral processing devices, which serves as a computer's central switchboard by connecting the central processing unit with such peripherals as the keyboard, monitor, printer, and other devices. The end result was more efficiency and better integration. He is the first African-American to become an IBM Fellow which is the highest level of technical excellence at the company. In 1997, he was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame. Currently, he is the John Fisher Distinguished Professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at the University of Tennessee. He holds more than 20 patents, (including three of IBM's original nine PC patents).
  • Date of Birth:

    1957 March 02
  • Noted For:

    Co-developer of a number of landmark technologies, including the color PC monitor, the Industry Standard Architecture system bus and the first gigahertz chip
  • Category of Achievement:

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