You’ve Never Heard of Tech Legend Bob Taylor, But He Invented ‘Almost Everything’

Source: 
Author: 

The week of April 10 the world lost the most important tech pioneer whom hardly anyone has heard of: Bob Taylor. When I asked Alphabet executive chairman Eric Schmidt to tell me about Taylor—Schmidt worked in Taylor’s Silicon Valley computer science lab as a graduate student—Schmidt said, “Bob Taylor invented almost everything in one form or another that we use today in the office and at home.”

In 1961, as a project manager at NASA, Taylor directed funding to computer scientist Douglas Engelbart, who used the money, in part, to invent the computer mouse. Five years later, at Arpa (now Darpa), Taylor kick-started the internet when he convinced his boss to invest $500,000 of taxpayer money to build a computer network. That network was the Arpanet, precursor to the internet. In 1972, Taylor midwifed the birth of the modern personal computer at Xerox PARC. But just as important as these innovations: Taylor built one of the greatest teams in the history of high-technology and kept it together for years.


You’ve Never Heard of Tech Legend Bob Taylor, But He Invented ‘Almost Everything’