Douglas Engelbart Inventor of the mouse, and pioneer of the graphical user interface and hypertext.
Douglas Engelbart was born January 25 1925. While stationed as a radio technician in the Philippines during World War II, he read Vannavar Bush's book As We May Think about how a machine could aid human cognition.
Inspired by the vision, Engelbart grew restless in his post-war job as an electrical engineer at NACA Ames Laboratory, and so quit his job and got a PhD from U.C. Berkeley in 1955.
In the early 1960's Engelbart founded the Augmentation Research Center at the Stanford Research Institute. The goal of his laboratory was to enhance human abilities through the use of computers. To achieve this goal, Engelbart's team worked on the NLS or the oN-Line System, unveiled to the public in a famous 1968 demo. NLS was the first system to have hypertext documents, multiple windows, a chorded keyboard, and the first computer mouse.
Because of its steep learning curve, NLS never became very popular. However, it heavily influenced later graphical interface work at Xerox PARC.
In 1997, Doug Engelbart received the prestigious ACM Turing Award "for an inspiring vision of the future of interactive computing and the invention of key technologies to help realize this vision."
Douglas Engelbart is still active as director of the Bootstrap Project.