About Owen Densmore

Owen Densmore has over 30 years experience in the computer industry, having worked with three of the industry's most innovative companies: Xerox, Apple, and Sun Microsystems. His work includes language systems, networked multimedia, Apple's Mac and Lisa hardware and software, Java nomadics, an innovative PostScript based window system, the Java Car, the Macintosh Printing Architecture, VLSI design, Radio Frequency ID systems, and embedded Java devices. He served four years as the Chief Scientist for both Sun's Information Technology division and their Merger's and Acquisition team, and has spent the last 3 years integrating methods of Complex Adaptive Systems into Sun's research and product divisions. His current research is in Supply Chain Management, Multi-Agent Simulation, and Modern Optimization Techniques.

Owen joined Xerox Webster Research in New York in 1972, initially organizing a company wide patent database on the then-innovative Sigma-7 time share system. He then joined the research team designing hardware and software for the newly emerging laser printers. This effort included VLSI design and fab with the MIT/Xerox/Caltech Multi-project Chip program, and building the first high-level language (Bcpl and Mesa) device architecture for printing. All this was done on the novel Alto computing system, the precursor to the Xerox Star, the Apple Macintosh, and the Sun workstation.

He left Xerox in 1980 to help make the Alto technology a reality at Apple, first on the Lisa and later the Macintosh. His work centered on printing, creating the first consumer WYSISYG (What You See Is What You Get) computing system. This involved many innovations, including printer hardware design for visual fidelity systems, and designing application software access to printing, both an API and a printer configuration sub-system. The Mac printing software included the first instance of the Chooser, a user-friendly system configuration capability. He designed the Apple LaserWriter printing architecture and his PrintShop team of engineers developed the first multi-printer desktop capable of switching seamlessly between Laser, Dot Matrix and Impact printers.

Owen left Apple in 1985 for Sun Microsystems to work on a Postscript based window system, NeWS: the Network Extensible Window System. This expanded to include two Object Postscript GUI toolkits, one of which earned a patent in language design. He then joined a hardware/software CORBA (Common Object Request Broker Architecture) based multimedia project which wrote and implemented the first media standard for that organization. He then spent four years with Sun's IT and Business units as their Chief Scientist, and head of a small Skunkworks team looking into emerging technologies and their impact on both services and products for Sun. This culminated in a very successful, cross-industry Java Car project resulting in three Detroit Concept Cars and the first prototype for the BMW X-5 media system. He then attended the Santa Fe Institute's 2000 Complex Systems Summer School, resulting in a 2 1/2 year complex systems technology transfer program within Sun, delivering peer systems simulations, power law network explorations, and a Supply Chain Simulation for the MIT/Cambridge University AutoID program.

Owen holds 6 patents in computing areas. He earned his Bachelors Degree in Math and Physics from Georgia Tech in 1964, spent two years in Africa with the Peace Corps, and earned his Masters in Physics from Syracuse University in 1968.

email: owen@redfish.com