J. C. R. Licklider
1915 – 1990
Who was J. C. R. Licklider?
Joseph Carl Robnett Licklider, known simply as J.C.R. or "Lick" was an American psychologist and computer scientist considered one of the most important figures in computer science and general computing history. He is particularly remembered for being one of the first to foresee modern-style interactive computing, and its application to all manner of activities; and also as an Internet pioneer, with an early vision of a worldwide computer network long before it was built. He did much to actually initiate all that through his funding of research which led to a great deal of it, including today's canonical graphical user interface, and the ARPANET, the direct predecessor to the Internet.
He has been called "computing's Johnny Appleseed", for having planted the seeds of computing in the digital age. Robert Taylor, founder of Xerox PARC's Computer Science Laboratory and Digital Equipment Corporation's Systems Research Center, noted that "most of the significant advances in computer technology—including the work that my group did at Xerox PARC—were simply extrapolations of Lick's vision. They were not really new visions of their own. So he was really the father of it all".
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