The Mouse Inventor’s Vision of Computing

Beginning in the 1950s, when computing was in its infancy, Douglas C. Engelbart set out to show that progress in science and engineering could be greatly accelerated if researchers, working in small groups, shared computing power. He called the approach “bootstrapping.”

At the time, computers were room-size calculating machines that were not interactive and could be used by only a single person at a time. In December 1968, however, he set the computing world on fire with a remarkable demonstration, called the “Mother of All Demos,” before more than a thousand of the world’s leading computer scientists at the Fall Joint Computer Conference in San Francisco. [cont.]

John Markoff & Ashwin Seshagiri, New York Times