[ih] John Ellenby's death

Guy Almes galmes at tamu.edu
Sat Aug 27 06:41:38 PDT 2016

   The NYT has an obit 
on John Ellenby.  An interesting rehearsal of the late-70s early-80s 
efforts to commercialize the Alto/Dynabook idea.
   One interesting item in the article is that the name (Grid Systems) 
of Ellenby's company relates to an internet-ish vision.  It quotes Marc 
Weber as saying "that the name Grid was derived from Mr. Ellenby’s 
vision of a gridlike network — a precursor to the internet — that would 
connect various computers with one another, allowing them to share 
files. The idea was to sell the system through a business services 
company. The company called the system Grid Central."
   This would have been at a time when Ellenby (who had been at Xerox 
PARC in the late 70s) would have been familiar with both the Alto, the 
Ethernet, and the ARPAnet.
   At one level, this is a reminder of that fertile environment.
   But I wonder if anyone on the list could comment on how Ellenby's 
"Grid" vision compared and contrasted with the emerging Internet.

	-- Guy

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