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  Vecta on The People Who Changed (Technology) Things
  The Venture Capitalist mantra used to (and many still do) say there were three things that mattered most when supporting a venture - people, people and people.
Apart from the crazy world of 1998 and 1999 when only having a back of envelope idea seemed to matter; they did also consider the size of market the idea was aimed at; the feasibility of the technology; the ability to defend the intellectual property, the strength of the management team, a viable business model and, of course, an exit route with reasonable chance of gain. But people still dominate their consideration.
  • Does the chief technologist know what he is talking about? Can he pull together and motivate the team to make it happen?
  • Does the chief executive have the skills and connections to build the business?
  • Can the chief financial guy keep the costs on track while developing the hymn sheet to exhort the investors?
  • And let's not forget the evangelising marketeers and salesmen who transform the ideas into commercial realities
Here we list some who have entered history as those who changed (technology) things:  
Allen, Bardeen, Bechtolsheim, Berners-Lee, Brattain, Bricklin, Brinn, Case, Chambers, Christensen, Coase, Collier, DeCastro, Dell, Dijkstra, Ellison, Friend, Gates, Gaunt, Grove, Hamming, Hewlett, Hoff, Hopper, Ives, Jobs, Johnson, Joy, Kernighan, Kilby, Kosla, Lesk, Lynch, McCaw, McNealy, Metcalfe, Moore, Noyce, Olsen, Packard, Pratt, Ritchie, Sanders, Shockley, Thompson, Torvalds, Welch, Widlar, Zuckerberg.
and some of the technologies that changed the world in recent times:
BlueTooth, C, CamCorder, COBOL, CD, CDMA, CMOS, Credit Card, DOS, DRAM, DVD, eMail, Ethernet, Fax, Flash, Hamming Code, GPS, GSM, Hypertext, Internet, Java, JPG, Linux, Liquid Crystals, MacIntosh, minDV, Microprocessor, Minicomputer, Modem, Mouse, MP3, MPEG, Nanotechnology, Operational Amplifier, OHP, Oscilloscope, OLED, Packet Switching, PC, PDA, PKI, Planar Technology, Satellite TV, Scanners, SocialGraph, Spreadsheet, Structured Programming, TCP/IP, Transistor, TTL, Unix, VHS, VoiceMail, Windows, Word processor, World Wide Web, ZIP.
Our lists are not exhaustive and may (?) even be a little subjective. We'll be adding short profiles of each of them over the coming months. Do let us know if you think you or others deserve a mention (especially why; even better if you write 'em up!) and we'll see what we can do to balance things. Maybe one day we will run a poll so you can put them in order.
You can find Frank Morris's profile here.

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