Starting with Founding Director Barney Oliver, HP Labs directors have been a distinguished lot. Oliver, who some consider to be one of greatest applied scientists of the 20th century, presided over HP Labs during a period when researchers invented the well-known HP-35, the first scientific handheld calculator.
Two directors were pioneers of Reduced Instruction Set Computer (RISC) architecture. Others were developers of such technologies as ultrasonic imaging, high-speed computer printers and distributed computer architecture. And still others were global navigators who established HP Labs sites on three continents.
Prith Banerjee joined HP Labs in 2007 from the University of Illinois at Chicago, where he served as dean of the Engineering College. A distinguished academic and serial entrepreneur, Banerjee was charged with reorganizing HP Labs to better align its research agenda with HP's overall business goals. During his tenure, the research group pursued applied and basic research into computer algorithms, nanotechnology, information management and analytics, and cloud and security. This work resulted in breakthroughs such as memristor research, sensing solutions (CeNSE), optical connections (photonics) and nanostores. Banerjee also oversaw the expansion of HP Labs in Singapore in 2010.
During a 35-year career with HP, Lampman managed such key research efforts as PA-Wide Word, which was the basis for Itanium, as well as the development of technologies like digital photography that launched new businesses for HP. He was named director of HP Labs in 1999.
Under his leadership, the lab played an integral role in transforming HP from an instrument- and hardware-based company to one focused on software, systems and services. In addition, he established HP Labs as a world leader in utility computing, trusted systems and security, technology for developing economies, quantum science and other areas. He was also instrumental in globally expanding HP Labs’ presence to China, India and Russia.
Ed Karrer and Dick Lampman
Ed Karrer, director of the Microelectronics and Measurement Solutions Center, and Dick Lampman, director of the Information Technologies Center, became co-directors of HP Labs after Joel Birnbaum's retirement. Among other contributions, Karrer is known for initiating and managing research that led to a real-time ultrasonic imaging system for cardiology, radiology and obstetrics and a new business for HP. After HP spun off Agilent Technologies in November 1999, Karrer became director of Agilent Labs and Lampman was named director of HP Labs.
Birnbaum, who first led HP Labs in the mid-1980s, returned as senior vice president of research and development in 1991. During this period, HP Labs researchers developed the architecture and much of the technology for pervasive computing, as well as the Wide-Word architecture that became the basis of a partnership with Intel. After his retirement in 1999, he held several senior technical advisory positions at HP, including Chief Scientist.
An inventor of Reduced Instruction Set Computer (RISC) architecture, Carrubba joined HP Labs in 1982. He led efforts to define the next generation of computer-based instruments and design tools, and he guided work that produced significant contributions to integrated circuit design systems and methodology. As director, he drove work on the first single-chip implementation of HP's Spectrum precision architecture. He restructured the lab to optimize its skill base and better address emerging technologies, and he launched research groups and university collaborations in Tokyo; Pisa, Italy, and at Stanford University in Palo Alto, CA.
Hammond's 50-year career includes such contributions as the development of time standards for space navigation, high-speed computer printers and medical ultrasound technology. At HP, he launched production of precision quartz crystals for high-speed counters and frequency counters, and he started development of the laser interferometer, a device capable of measuring to millionths of an inch. Hammond was the first director of the Physical Electronics Lab, and he was the founding director of HP's first European laboratory in Bristol, UK, in 1984.
A pioneer in the development of distributed computer system architecture; real-time data acquisition, analysis and control systems, and Reduced Instruction Set Computer (RISC) architecture, Birnbaum joined HP Labs in 1980 and became director in 1984. Under his guidance, the company developed PA-RISC, the first commercial RISC processor, and the client-server architecture that helped secure HP's success in the modern computing era. From 1986 to 1988, Birnbaum headed the development organization bringing to market all PA-RISC hardware and software; and, from 1988 to 1991, he led efforts to create the architecture that was the basis of HP's object-oriented distributed systems.
Doyle, who coined the phrase "management by wandering around," became director of HP Labs after holding senior leadership positions in business development, personnel, division general management, manufacturing, and research and development. When the Open Software Foundation was created in 1988, he was its first chairman, and he chaired the Center for Integrated Systems at Stanford University throughout its early years. He belonged to the management team that founded HP's British subsidiary in the early 1960s. Under his leadership, HP established its first European lab in Bristol, UK in 1984.
Barney Oliver (founding director)
The founding director of HP Labs, Oliver was regarded by many as one of the greatest applied scientists of the 20th century. During Oliver's 29-year tenure with HP, the company established itself as an icon of excellence in research and development and shaped the face of business in what became known as Silicon Valley. Oliver also was well known for his work at Bell Labs and as a leader of the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) Institute. He was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in 2004. Oliver passed away on Nov. 23, 1995.