ComputerWeekly poll: Who are the most influential IT people of past 40 years? (Steve Jobs included)

Computer Weekly is celebrating its fortieth year with a “Top People Poll: Who are the most influential IT people of the past 40 years?”

To celebrate Computer Weekly’s 40th anniversary, we are asking our readers to choose the people, technologies and organizations hat have changed the face of IT irrevocably – hopefully for the better.

To make your choice, simply click on any of the four categories (people, organisations, hardware and software) on our webpage and select your top three from the list of 10 names. There’s also space to add your own choice if they are not on the list.

Online voters can choose three names from the list below:

• Bill Gates – His idea of information at your fingertips has revolutionised how we use computers in business today.
• Steve Jobs – With Pixar, NeXT and of course, Apple, Jobs has revolutionised entertainment and made computers friendly.
• Ted Codd – He created 12 rules on which every relational database is now built, an essential ingredient for building business computer systems.
• James Gosling – The father of Java had a simple idea: write once, run anywhere. Today, Java is embedded everywhere.
• Tim Berners Lee – He led the way to transforming a simple mechanism for sharing documents into the World Wide Web that we know today.
• Richard Stallman – The founder of the GNU Project, Stallman has written several popular tools, created the GNU licence and campaigns against software patents.
• Linus Torvalds – Even the might of Microsoft could not stop the buzz that Torvalds generated with his open source operating system.
• Steve Shirley – Dame Stephanie founded the company now known as Xansa, pioneered new work practices and in so doing created new opportunities for women in IT.
• Martha Lane Fox – Together with Brent Hoberman, Lane Fox created in 1998 which quickly established itself as a showcase of UK internet entrepreneurship.
• Arthur C Clark – His vision of a central computer system with a personality has inspired many to push the frontiers of artificial intelligence.

Presumably, the results will be available sometime soon, as they are not instantly available after voting online.

Vote here. You know what to do.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “S.” for the heads up.]


  1. Rats! Looks like I’m ‘first post’. Hate when that happens. Makes me seem like a lifeless moron with nothing better to do than jump on the latest wire story from MDN.

    Guess I’ll go play some video games on my Xbox in the basement now.

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