L Names: Famous People in Technology

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L

Lerner, Sandy

Co-founded Cisco Systems Inc. In 1984, Lerner and Len Bosack developed the first commercially successful network router — a device that enables once-incompatible computers in far-off computer networks to communicate — while they were managers of two computer networks at Stanford University. The router enabled the two networks to share data. Lerner and Bosack founded Cisco System using their new technology. Lerner left Cisco after the company went public in 1990 and is currently the CEO of Urban Decay, a cosmetics company.

Licklider, J.C.R.

1915(b.)-1990(d.) Psychologist, psychoacoustitician and computer scientist. He was the first director of ARPA’s Information Processing Techniques Office and was a leader in developing time-sharing and interactive computing systems. His program at ARPA supported the development of computer science PhD programs at four of the first universities to offer graduate degrees in computer science.

Lovelace, Ada Byron

1815(b.)-1852(d.) Daughter of Lord Byron. Considered to be the world’s first programmer. In 1843, she published an article based on the work of Charles Babbage in which she predicted that a calculating engine proposed by Babbage could be used to compose complex music, to produce graphics, and would be used for both practical and scientific use. She suggested to Babbage writing a plan for how the engine might calculate Bernoulli numbers. This plan is now regarded as the first “computer program.” A software language developed by the U.S. Department of Defense was named Ada in her honor in 1979.

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This article was originally published on June 24, 2010

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