• 1926 June 08
    (b.) -
    2005 December 26


John Theurer Diebold was an early champion of widespread use of computing and automated technology. Diebold was born in Weehawken, New Jersey. He graduated from Swarthmore College in 1949 and Harvard Business School in 1951. He published his first of twelve books, Automation, in 1952, which was based on a report he did while he was a student at the Harvard Business School. In it, he presented his vision of the use of programmable electronic systems for business. Most people trace the use of the word "automation" to 1947, when Del Harder, vice president of production at Ford Motor Company, applied the concept to machine processes in automobile manufacture. The term came into broader use in Diebold's book, which used it in reference to information as well as machine processing. He started a consulting company in the bedroom of his house in New Jersey, John Diebold & Associates, which through acquisitions morphed into The Diebold Group, an international organization. He was fired from several jobs for refusing to "give up on his obsession with computer and automation". Considered ahead of his time, many of his ideas were widely implemented. In 1968, for instance, he championed automated teller machines (ATMs). That same year, he established an operating foundation, The Diebold Institute for Public Policy Studies. Among its works was a case report on the impact of Silicon Alley on the New York economy. He died in Bedford Hills, New York aged 79.
  • Date of Birth:

    1926 June 08
  • Date of Death:

    2005 December 26
  • Gender:

  • Noted For:

    An early champion of widespread use of computing and automated technology
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