Bio | Alan Heirich

Native of Berkeley, California, raised in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Educated at California Institute of Technology (PhD, MS), University of California, San Diego (MS), and University of Michigan (BA with Honors in Computer Science). My Erdos number is four (via Christof Koch).  

I was born in Berkeley, California during the Free Speech Movement, and grew up in Ann Arbor, Michigan where I attended high school and college.  I spent many years in graduate education where I had remarkable experiences with some amazing people.  In between I worked in the computer industry where I have held senior positions at the largest and smallest of companies and worked as a consultant.  I am a Graduate Fellow of the U.S. National Science Foundation and a reviewer for Mathematical Reviews.

I was lucky enough to first encounter computers in 1973 at the legendary People’s Computer Company in Menlo Park, California. Although I have often been interested in other things I have never gotten away from computers. I’m credited here on one of the earliest online multiplayer games, SPACE for the time shared HP 2000 series minicomputer (1975). When I was 15 I appeared as a guest magician on the Bozo the Clown show on CKLW-TV in Windsor, Ontario, Canada. I participated in developing an early commercial scientific supercomputer (1980), a research machine with thousands of integrated processors (1993), and I architected the worlds most scalable and powerful graphics and visualization cluster which became a product for HP (2002). Today I work on exascale computers with hundreds of thousands of cores. I’ve been a Linux user since 1994.