Douglas Engelbart

What Does Douglas Engelbart Mean?

Douglas Engelbart is an electrical engineer who pioneered many areas in personal computing and Internet technologies. Engelbart was deeply concerned about using technology to augment human intellect, and received funding to open the Augmentation Research Center in 1963. Through his work at the center, Engelbart invented many technologies including:

  • The mouse
  • A working hypertext and hypermedia system
  • Groupware
  • WHYSIWYG text editing
  • Internet videoconferencing
  • Graphical user interface (GUI)
  • Window-based operating systems

Techopedia Explains Douglas Engelbart

Douglas Engelbart is most famous for the “mother of all demos,” which he gave on December 9, 1968. Engelbart rolled out a working package of technology representing technological leaps in every area of computing while also creating new areas. One area that still lags behind Engelbart’s demo is program compatibility. Engelbart envisioned that all computing tools would one day be able to operate seamlessly with each other. Instead, we have a different program for every function, and very few of them play well together. On the whole, however, many of Engelbart’s inventions have now become mainstream, although it took decades for technology to catch up to his vision.


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Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.