“He became one of the first overnight Internet multimillionaires when Netscape made its Wall Street debut … Andreessen exudes gawky charm, and displays a polymath’s knowledge of the most exotic subjects.”
“Anseth develops new types of photopolymers, plastics that go from soft to hard when struck by ultraviolet light. Anseth has invented novel photopolymers that actually wear away over time—a feature that promises much for orthopedic repairs.”
“Berger is leading a group of computational biologists to develop software that … predict[s] protein folding based on the sequence of amino acids. Such insights could eventually lead to new drugs to combat viral disease such as AIDS.
“He founded Earthlink Network—now one of the nation’s top five Internet service providers. Attribute that success to … innovations such as the $19.95 monthly flat rate when most ISPs were still clinging to the notion of hourly fees.”
“These days, robots are typically used in limited, specialized roles. But if Helen Greiner and Colin Angle [her cofounder at the company that would become iRobot] have anything to say about that, robots may soon be a more versatile and ubiquitous part of our lives.”
“While Ive’s work helped Apple distance itself from the pack, that wasn’t the primary purpose for his group’s innovative design, he says. ‘Our goal wasn’t just to differentiate our product, but to create products that people would love in the future.’”
“Jeremijenko’s aim is to pierce the ‘hallucination’ that cyberspace is somehow clean. In reality the digital domain is a world of hard truths. Silicon Valley is home to a large concentration of toxic waste sites and one of the nation’s largest gaps between rich and poor.”
“Rogers has developed a series of novel fabrication techniques to make transistors from organic polymers, and integrated circuits on curved surfaces. The new transistors could be utilized in a flexible computer display consisting of a thin sheet of plastic.”
“What happens when computers become part of us, attached to our bodies like clothes or eyeglasses? That’s a question Thad Starner has been asking—in practice—since 1993, when he developed his first wearable computer system.”
“If operating-system software has a revolutionary hero, it is Linus Torvalds. The movement is ‘open-source’ software—in which a system’s source code is freely shared and collectively improved. This model has moved into the computing mainstream largely due to [Torvalds].”
Excerpted from “The Technology Review 100,” in the November/December 1999 issue of Technology Review.