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Gerald Estrin

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Biography

Prof. Gerald Estrin, a 1968 IEEE Life Fellow "For outstanding contributions to university research and education in computers, and to the design and construction of pioneering digital computers" was an early leader of computer design.  He is also a Guggenheim Fellow, and a member of the Board of Governors of the Weizmann Institute of Science, Israel.

Born 9 September 1921 in New York, Estrin received his B.S, M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Wisconsin in 1948, 1949, and 1951, respectively.

He served as research engineer in the von Neumann group at IAS from 1950-56, this led to an invitation from the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel to direct the WEIZAC Project in 1954-5; the

Central processing unit of the WEIZAC, Photo Courtesy of Weizmann Institue of Science
Central processing unit of the WEIZAC, Photo Courtesy of Weizmann Institue of Science
WEIZAC computer is now an IEEE Milestone in Electrical Engineering and Computing. In the 1980s, the WEIZAC team was interviewed for the Computer Pioneers Project.

Estrin served as Chairperson of the UCLA Computer Science Department from 1979 to 1982 and from 1985 to 1988. He retired in 1991, and was recalled as Professor Emeritus. He is married to UCLA Computer Science Professor Thelma Estrin, and they are the parents of Deborah Estrin, also a UCLA Computer Science professor, and of Judy Estrin.