“The book is an edited collection of autobiographies of a collection of people, at all levels, who were at Bell Labs in the 1960s in mostly the research area,” Noll said. “The objective of the book was to capture the spirit of Bell Labs by telling the life stories, or snapshots, of the people who were there, since it is people who make an organization.”
The book was co-edited with Michael Geselowitz, director of the IEEE History Center.
From the publisher: “In structure and history, Bell Labs was unique in the world. Its discoveries and inventions (advances on its earlier invention of the transistor, the laser, UNIX, the charge-coupled device) transformed global society and helped to form the information age and the digital era. The collection of narratives in this book focuses on Bell Labs’ peak years during the 1960s and 1970s. Whether by accident or providence, these years correspond almost exactly with the years when William Baker led the Labs (1955 – 1973). The chapters are mini-memoirs, ranging from personal background to research accounts to stories of social life at the Labs, as told by persons from every aspect of the Lab’s research operations, from chauffeurs and technicians to top scientists. Bill Baker’s presence runs through all the narratives, leading the organization and defining its tone. His personal aptitude and leadership left an indelible stamp on Bell Labs and, indeed, on global science and technology.”
Noll has a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from the Polytechnic Institute of Brooklyn, an M.E.E. from New York University, and a B.S.E.E. from Newark College of Engineering. Eta Kappa Nu, the electrical-engineering honor society, awarded him Honorable Mention as an Outstanding Young Electrical Engineer in 1970. In 1990, the Computer Graphics Pioneers of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) elected him a Pioneer in recognition of his early work in computer graphics.
To find out more about Noll, please visit http://noll.uscannenberg.org/