West at home in Westport MA
Joseph Thomas West
November 22, 1939
|Died||May 19, 2011|
|Alma mater||Amherst College, B.A. 1962|
Joseph Thomas "Tom" West III (22 November 1939 – 19 May 2011) was a technologist and the protagonist of the Pulitzer Prize winning non-fiction book The Soul of a New Machine .
West began his career at RCA, after seven years at the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, a job he'd gotten right out of college.He started working for Data General in 1974. He became the head of Data General's Eclipse group and then became the lead on the Eagle project, building a machine officially named the Eclipse MV/8000. After the publication of Soul of a New Machine, West was sent to Japan by Data General where he helped design DG-1, the first full-screen laptop. His last project in 1996, a thin Web server, was intended to be an internet-ready machine. West retired as Chief Technologist in 1998.
West was married to Elizabeth West in 1965; they divorced in 1994.The couple had two daughters, Katherine West and librarian Jessamyn West. West married Cindy Woodward in 2001; the couple divorced in 2011. West died at the age of 71 in his Westport, Massachusetts home of an apparent heart attack. His nephew, Christopher Schwarz, is a former editor of Popular Woodworking magazine, author of The Anarchist Toolchest, and co-founder of Lost Art Press.
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