Jeff ‘Yak’ Minter is a British video game designer and programmer. He is the founder of software house Llamasoft and his recent works include Neon (2004), a non-game music visualization program that has been built into the Xbox 360 console, and the video games Space Giraffe (Xbox Live Arcade, 2007 and PC, 2008), and Space Invaders Extreme (Xbox Live Arcade, May 2009). Fans of Minter’s games have identified a number of distinctive elements common to his games. They are often arcade style shoot ’em ups. They often contain titular and/or in-game references demonstrating his fondness of ruminants (llamas, sheep, camels, etc.). Many of his programs also feature something of a psychedelic element, as in some of the earliest “light synthesizer” programs including his Trip-a-Tron.
John C. Dvorak is an American columnist and broadcaster in the areas of technology and computing. His writing extends back to the 1980s, when he was a mainstay of a variety of magazines. Dvorak is also the Vice-President of Mevio (formerly PodShow) and well known for his work for Tech TV. John Charles Dvorak was born in 1952 in Los Angeles, California. He graduated from the University of California, Berkeley with a degree in history, with a minor in flugelhorn, and has homes in the San Francisco Bay area and Port Angeles, in Washington State. He is married to Mimi Smith-Dvorak. Dvorak is a noted collector of Bordeaux wines and has been a tasting judge at various international events. He started his career as a wine writer. Dvorak obtained a technician class amateur (ham) radio license, callsign KJ6LNG, in November 2010. Dvorak was on the start-up team for CNET Networks, appearing on the television show CNET Central. He also hosted a radio show called Real Computing on NPR, as well as a television show on TechTV (formerly ZDTV) called Silicon Spin. He now appears on Marketwatch TV and is a regular panelist on This Week in Tech, a podcast audio and now video program hosted by Leo Laporte and featuring other former TechTV personalities such as Patrick Norton, Kevin Rose, and Robert Heron. As of December 2005, that “TWiTcast” regularly ranks among the top 5 at Apple’s iTunes Music Store. Dvorak also participated in the only Triangulation podcast, a similar co-hosted technology discussion program. In March 2006, Dvorak started a new show called CrankyGeeks in which he led a rotating panel of “cranky” tech gurus in discussions of technology news stories of the week. The last episode (No. 237) aired on September 22, 2010. Mevio hired Dvorak as Vice President & Managing Editor for a new Mevio TECH channel in 2007. He manages content from existing Mevio tech programming as well as hosts the show, “Tech5”, where Dvorak discusses the day’s tech news in approximately 5 minutes. Dvorak also co-hosts a podcast with Mevio co-founder Adam Curry called No Agenda. The show is a free flowing conversation about the week’s news, happenings in the lives of the hosts and their families, and restaurant reviews from the dinners John and Adam have together when they are in the same city (usually San Francisco). Adam usually has more outlandish opinions of the week’s news or world events while Dvorak plays the straight man in the dialogue.
Evan Williams is an American entrepreneur who has founded several Internet companies. Two of the internet’s top ten websites have been created by Evan Williams’ companies: Blogger, weblog-authoring software of Pyra Labs, and Twitter, where he was previously CEO. Evan Williams and Meg Hourihan co-founded Pyra Labs to make project management software. A note-taking feature spun off as Blogger, one of the first web applications for creating and managing weblogs. Williams invented the term “blogger” and was instrumental in the popularization of the term “blog”. Pyra survived the departure of Hourihan and other employees, and was eventually acquired by Google on February 13, 2003. In 2003, Williams was named to the MIT Technology Review TR100 as one of the top 100 innovators in the world under the age of 35. In 2004, he was named one of PC Magazine’s “People of the Year”, along with Hourihan and Paul Bausch for their work on Blogger.
Michel Ancel is a French video game designer for Ubisoft. He is best known for creating the Rayman franchise, for which he was the lead designer for the first two games, and the recent Rayman Origins. He is also known for the cult favourite Beyond Good & Evil and for the video game adaptation of Peter Jackson’s King Kong. He is currently working on a sequel to Beyond Good & Evil with a small team of developers, using development tools specially designed to make game development more accessible to a greater audience. Ancel’s first demo, Mechanic Warriors, was developed for software house Lankhor. Ancel then joined Ubisoft as a graphic artist after meeting the game author Nicolas Choukroun in Montpellier at the age of 17. He made the graphics of Nicolas’ games such as The Intruder, Pick’n Pile before doing his first game as both programmer and graphic artist Brain Blaster published by Ubi Soft in 1990. In 1992, he began to work on Rayman, his directorial debut. It was originally released in 1995 for the Atari Jaguar, and in 1996 for PlayStation and Sega Saturn. Ancel was also heavily involved in the development of Rayman 2: The Great Escape, but had only an advisory role on Rayman 3: Hoodlum Havoc. Although he praised its development team, he claims he would have “made the game differently”.
Steve Maury Gibson is a computer enthusiast, software engineer and security researcher who studied Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at the University of California, Berkeley. Gibson lives in Laguna Hills, California. In 1985, Gibson founded Gibson Research Corporation, which is best known for its SpinRite software. An avid sci-fi fan, he has been known to be jokingly referred to as Steve Tiberius Gibson, an obvious poke at Star Trek’s most famous captain of the Enterprise, James T(iberius) Kirk. Gibson Research Corporation or GRC is a computer software development firm founded in 1985 by Gibson. The company is registered in Laguna Hills, California. GRC has created a number of niche utilities over the years, the foremost of which is SpinRite, a hard disk scanning and data recovery utility. Gibson co-hosts a weekly computer security-focused podcast with Leo Laporte called Security Now!. Gibson has appeared on Leo Laporte’s technology podcast, This Week in Tech. and also used to occasionally appear on The Lab with Leo Laporte on G4techTV Canada. Steve Gibson was a contributing editor to InfoWorld magazine. He reported on the world of hackers and crackers.
Scott Elliott Fahlman is a computer scientist at Carnegie Mellon University. He is notable for early work on automated planning in a blocks world, on semantic networks, on neural networks (and, in particular, the cascade correlation algorithm), on the Dylan programming language, and on Common Lisp (in particular CMU Common Lisp). Recently, Fahlman has been engaged in constructing a Knowledge Base, “Scone”, based in part on his thesis work on the NETL Semantic Network. Fahlman was born in Medina, Ohio, U.S.. He received his bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in 1973 from MIT, and his Ph.D. from MIT in 1977. His thesis advisors were Drs Gerald Sussman and Patrick Winston. He is a fellow of the American Association for Artificial Intelligence. Fahlman acted as thesis advisor for Donald Cohen, David B. McDonald, David S. Touretzky, Skef Wholey, Justin Boyan, Michael Witbrock, and Alicia Tribble Sagae. From May 1996 to July 2000, Fahlman directed the Justsystem Pittsburgh Research Center.
Norbert Pohlmann is a computer scientist and a professor at the University of Applied Sciences Gelsenkirchen. Norbert Pohlmann studied Electrical Engineering (1981–1985), specialized in Computer Science, and has written his doctoral thesis on “Possibilities and Limitations of Firewall Systems”. He was Managing Director at KryptoKom (Company for information security and communication technology) from 1988 to 1999. After the merger with Utimaco Safeware AG he was a member of the Utimaco Safeware AG management board from 1999 to 2003. Since 2003 Norbert Pohlmann is Professor in the Computer Science Department for distributed systems and information security and director of the Institute for Internet Security at the University of Applied Sciences Gelsenkirchen. He is one of the founders of the IT Security Association TeleTrusT (which establishes reliable conditions for the trustworthy application of information- and communication technologies) where he is member of the board since 1994 and chairman of the board since April 1998. Norbert Pohlmann is one of the initiators of the “Information Security Solutions Europe” (ISSE) and chairman of the ISSE program committee of the ISSE conference. In addition to that he is also a member of the academic council of the GDD (The German Association for Data Protection and Data Security) as well as a member of the advisory council eco (Association of the German Internet Industry). He used to be a member of the Permanent Stakeholders’ Group of the ENISA (European Network and Information Security Agency) from 2005 to 2010.