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We lost a great one

I just got word that Doug Engelbart passed away last night (a personal friend of both of ours emailed me just a few minutes ago to tell me). No more details are known, will pass them along when I hear more. (UPDATE: he passed away peacefully, his daughter reported, and was 88: http://gigaom.com/2013/07/03/doug-engelbart-american-inventor-computing-legend-passes-away/ I heard his health had deteriorated recently, which was also confirmed by his daughter).

Doug was the guy who invented the mouse and a LOT of what we know of as the modern computer. He was in the room when the first Internet node was turned on at SRI (which is the same research lab that invented HDTV, the Internet, speech recognition, SIRI, and much more).

For me, personally, Doug wasn't just a national hero, but was a personal hero too. Here he is showing my son, +Patrick Scoble the original mouse (a copy is in SRI's lobby). He was always a decade ahead of most of us, showing the world what basically was the Macintosh back in 1969 in what is now known as "the mother of all demos." You can watch that at Douglas Engelbart : The Mother of All Demos (1/9)

How many people have shown you something 15 years before you could buy it? In my life? I can count those people on one hand.

Doug has influenced millions of people and lots of us in Silicon Valley sought out his visionary mind to get a little taste of what is coming next. 

I'll miss him, here's a shot I made of Doug, along with Macromind founder +Marc Canter and my producer +Rocky Barbanica. Meeting him was meeting the real deal. A true visionary that you rarely see today (partly because the systems he invented made it easier to convince other people to try out your ideas).

We lost a great one yesterday. Personally Doug did more for humans than Steve Jobs did. That's how significant this loss is for the tech industry and the world.
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29 comments
 
Doug Englebart saw the future before it was possible and invented things we all use today. His is a name that is not well known, but should be legendary in the world of computing.
 
Doug was an awesome man.  So glad I got to spend time with him and hear his stories... he sure love to tell his stories.  RIP Doug...
Great pics, Robert - thank you !
 
When I was at BlueArc in 2002 or so, we had an opportunity to rename our conference rooms, and I'd proposed using Silicon Valley legends - with Engelebart being one of the names. I was voted down and nobody else knew who he was.
 
I remember watching the mother of all demos at a Reboot conference in Copenhagen some years ago. It blew my mind. Doug will be missed. RIP.
 
A great tribute to one of the true Technology Pioneers. Sad to hear of his passing. 
 
Sad to hear this news.  He was ahead of his time/peers, we now live the connected, networked, collaborative future he predicted. His legacy will live on.
 
My condolences to Doug, family and friends.
 
RIP! I'll remember him always when using a mouse. 
 
Wonderful tribute.  
BTW, did you really mean "less than one hand" which is zero?
 
RIP Doug!  Your smiling face comes to mind whenever someone tells me that Steve Jobs invented the mouse. :-) 
 
I feel very fortunate to have met Doug Engelbart at an Innovation Journalism conference at Stanford University several years ago. He asked me and another person from the Silicon Valley Innovation Institute to have lunch with him. He was a delightful, fascinating man, and it was an unforgettable experience. Rest in peace, Doug Engelbart. Thank you, Robert Scoble, for this wonderful,  moving tribute to him.
 
Another of our digital pioneers have gone sub without return.
RIP, Doug Englebart.
 
 If I have seen farther it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.-- Sir Isaac Newton
 
I am truly sorry. 88 wow. God bless those who are close and dear to him. Will be sadly be missed by all.
 
I'm crying right now while looking at my mouse. :(
 
Would be hard to overstate Doug's influence on me. In the 80's I read all of his papers and wrote a mini version of "Augment" in DOS. In the 90's, I was lucky enough to attend his colloquium at Stanford and hung out with him for a few months after that. Recently, I started working at SRI (at a startup). Doug's influence here is huge. Yes, a great one has passed.
 
Rest in peace. Every mouse user thanks you.
 
(click) Rest in peace, good sir. (click ... post comment)
 
Doug was an original...a treasure! Was just talking to Doc! We need to  organize a meetup, perhaps on the deck at the Ritz! And talk about this world that we are lucky enough to live in!
 
I agree with your comments Robert.  Doug was really one of the most outstanding computer pioneers and its worth watching those demo videos to see just how far ahead he was.  I had the chance to meet and talk with him one evening, and forgetting all of the above, I felt he was a genuinely positive spirit to be around.
 
Thanks for posting the photo of Doug with your son, so typical of him.
Doug was both a visionary engineer (in truth) and a soft spoken, polite and incredibly determined pioneer. He was also an incredibly kind and noble person - he forever changed the life and attitude of many of the people he met.

Although his obits lead with the invention of the mouse, he's personally responsible for much more of the tech we use every day - and some we're still getting used to. RIP Doug.

"Engelbart was able to see things that most people couldn’t, and make them real. But he was also a passionate believer in what he called Collective IQ — the ability of teams to do things that lone guns cannot."

See the 1968 video in this Time piece by Harry McCracken
http://techland.time.com/2013/07/03/douglas-engelbart/#ixzz2Y4qUrzaq
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