Douglas Carl Engelbart inventor of Mouse

Douglas Carl Engelbart inventor or mouse

Douglas Carl Engelbart is known for the creation of a Computer Mouse. Doug Engelbart was an American Engineer, Inventor and Internet Pioneer.

Engelbart is best known for his founding in Human-computer Interaction Field. He created Computer mouse, Precursors, Network Computers, Hypertext, and Graphical User Interfaces when he is at Augmentation Research Center Lab in SRI International.

Douglas Carl Engelbart was born on January 30, 1925, in Portland, Oregon to Gladys Charlotte Amelia Munson Engelbart and Carl Louis Engelbart. In his early years his family used to live in Portland, Oregon. Later when he was 8 their family moved to the surrounding countryside. When he was around 9 years old Douglas Engelbart lost his father. In 1942 Douglas graduated from Portland High School. When he was doing his undergraduate at Oregon State University, for two he served United States Navy as a Radio and Radar Technician in the Philippines. He was greatly inspired by “As We, May Think” an article written by Vannevar Bush. He came back to Oregon State and completed his Bachelor’s Degree in Electrical Engineering in 1948. 

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The National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics at the Ames Research Center hired him into wind tunnel maintenance. In his leisure hours, he enjoyed folk dancing, Hiking, and camping. There he met Ballard Fish who was training to become an occupational therapist. On May 5, 1951, in Portola State Park Douglas Carl Engelbart married Ballard Fish. Soon after his marriage, Douglas left Ames to pursue graduation at the University of California, Berkeley. In 1953 he received his M.S. in electrical engineering and in 1953 he received his Ph.D. in the discipline. In 1950, Douglas thought of making the world a better place instead of having a steady job. He believed that the computers at that time were thought of only as an automation tool, but that can be the tool for future knowledge workers to solve critical problems. 

In his lab, Engelbart embedded a set of organizing principles which he termed them as “bootstrapping”. He believed that when human systems and tool systems were aligned, such that workers spent time “improving their tools for improving their tools”. That can lead to an accelerating rate of progress. Under the guidance of Douglas Carl Engelbart, an Augmentation Research Center was developed by the oN-Line System(NLS). This research center demonstrated numerous technologies, most of them are now in widespread use like the computer mouse, bitmapped screens and hypertext, etc. In 1986 Engelbart was retired.

Engelbart had four children with his first wife Ballard. In 1988 he and his daughter Christina launched the Bootstrap Institute which later named “The Doug Engelbart Institute”. In 1997 he lost his wife Ballard. In December 2000, the National Medal of Technology was awarded to Douglas Carl Engelbart by the United States President Bill Clinton. On January 26th, 2008 he remarried Karen O’Leary Engelbart who was a writer and producer. Douglas Carl Engelbart was awarded CHI Lifetime Achievement Award in 1998,  The Franklin Institute’s Certificate of Merit in 1996, Benjamin Franklin Medal in 1999, British Computer Society’s Lovelace Medal in 2001, Doctor of Engineering and Technology degree from Yale University in May 2011. On July 2, 2013, Douglas Carl Engelbart died at home in Atherton, California due to kidney failure. According to the Doug Engelbart Institute, his death came after a long fight with a disease named Alzheimer’s.

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