Mark Burgess (computer scientist)
Mark Burgess (born 19 February 1966) is a researcher and writer at Oslo University College in Norway, who is well known for work in computer science in the field of policy-based configuration management.
Mark Burgess was born in Maghull in the United Kingdom to English parents. He grew up in Bloxham, a small village in Oxfordshire from the age of 5-18, attending Bloxham Primary School, Warriner Secondary School and Banbury Upper School.
Originally interested in physics and astronomy, he went to study astrophysics at the (then) School of Physics at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne, where he later switched to pure Physics and then Theoretical Physics for his bachelor degree. He stayed on to obtain a Doctor of Philosophy in Theoretical Physics in Newcastle, in the field of Spontaneous Symmetry Breaking in Non-Abelian Gauge Theories, for which he received the Runcorn Prize.
After completing a doctorate he pursued a post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Oslo in Norway and has lived in Oslo ever since. While at Oslo he developed an interest in the behaviour of computers as dynamic systems and began to apply ideas from physics to describe computer behaviour.
Mark Burgess is perhaps best known as the author of the popular configuration management software package CFEngine, but has also made important contributions to the theory of the field of automation and policy based management, including the idea of operator convergence and promise theory.
Mark Burgess is the author of a number of books
- Paged ROM programming for the BBC Micro, (Dabs Press - never printed), 1985.
- C, Dabs Press 1988
- AmigaDOS, Dabs Press 1989
- C, (Third Edition) Dabs Press 1992
- C Tutorial (Fourth edition), Free Software Foundation, 2000
- Principles of Network and System Administration, J. Wiley & Sons. 2000
- Selected Papers in Network and System Administration, J. Wiley & Sons. 2001 (Editor, with E. Anderson and A. Couch.)
- A short introduction to operating systems, not formally published (available online), 2001
- Classical Covariant Fields, Cambridge University Press, 2002
- Principles of Network and System Administration (Second edition), J. Wiley & Sons. 2003
- Analytical Network and System Administration (Human-Computer management), J. Wiley & Sons. (2004)
- Handbook of Network and System Administration, Elsevier 2007, (Editor with Jan Bergstra)
- In Search of Certainty: The science of our information infrastructure, XtAxis Press, 2013
He is also the author of many popular and fictional writings.