Abraham Lempel

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Abraham Lempel
Abraham Lempel.JPG
Abraham Lempel in 2007
Born (1936-02-10) 10 February 1936 (age 85)
Known forLZ77, LZ78
AwardsParis Kanellakis Award (1997)
IEEE Richard W. Hamming Medal (2007)
Scientific career
FieldsInformation theory
InstitutionsTechnion - Israel Institute of Technology

Abraham Lempel (Hebrew: אברהם למפל‎, born 10 February 1936) is an Israeli computer scientist and one of the fathers of the LZ family of lossless data compression algorithms.


Lempel was born on 10 February 1936 in Lwów, Poland (now Lviv, Ukraine).[1] He studied at Technion - Israel Institute of Technology, and received a B.Sc. in 1963, M.Sc. in 1965, and D.Sc. in 1967. Since 1977 he has held the title of full professor. Lempel is now a professor emeritus in Technion.

His historically important works start with the presentation of the LZ77 algorithm in a paper entitled "A Universal Algorithm for Sequential Data Compression" in the IEEE Transactions on Information Theory (May 1977), co-authored by Jacob Ziv.

He is the recipient of the 1998 Golden Jubilee Award for Technological Innovation from the IEEE Information Theory Society;[2] and the 2007 IEEE Richard W. Hamming Medal, for "pioneering work in data compression, especially the Lempel-Ziv algorithm".[3]

Lempel founded HP Labs—Israel in 1994, and served as its director until October 2007.


The LZ77 and LZ78 algorithms authored by Lempel and Jacob Ziv have led to a number of derivative works, including the Lempel–Ziv–Welch algorithm, used in the GIF image format, and the Lempel-Ziv-Markov chain algorithm, used in the 7-Zip and xz compressors. The algorithms have also been used as originally published in formats such as DEFLATE, used in the PNG image format.


  • Jacob Ziv, Abraham Lempel (May 1977). "A Universal Algorithm for Sequential Data Compression". IEEE Transactions on Information Theory. 23 (3): 337–343. CiteSeerX doi:10.1109/TIT.1977.1055714.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "IEEE Transactions On Computers: Contributors". Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. December 1970. doi:10.1109/T-C.1970.222867. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  2. ^ "Golden Jubilee Awards for Technological Innovation". IEEE Information Theory Society. Retrieved 2014-10-30.
  3. ^ "IEEE Richard W. Hamming Medal Recipients" (PDF). IEEE. Retrieved 2014-10-30.

External links[edit]