Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

Image of Mark Dean holding something shiny

What's that he's holding? Something shiny. Who cares—this guy is brilliant.

On a personal note I’d like to say that Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is one of the greatest Americans in our country’s history. Without him and everybody else who took part in the civil rights movement the country wouldn’t be where it is today. To celebrate, I found a notable black inventor. Filled my heart with joy that it wasn’t hard. That’s the kind of world we live in now:

Mark Dean is the gent who led the team which developed the ISA bus, a type of standard socket in your computer which was replaced with one called PCI. He also led the team which designed the first 1 GHz processor.

And while that’s impressive, that’s just what he’s done. Now that he’s an IBM Fellow (the highest rank an engineer, scientist or programmer can get at IBM; he’s the first African-American to get it), he’s acting as a VP for IBM. As such, he oversees one of IBM’s eight research labs, called Almaden Research Center, where he oversees the work of over 400 people.

Dean was inducted to the hall of fame in 1997. And he holds over 20 patents.

MLK fought in the civil rights movement for the possibility that everyone could be treated equally. Without his work, Mark Dean would likely have been held back. And because he wasn’t, he’s some kind of boss inventor with all sorts of nerd cred. And that’s something everyone can respect.


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