Jim Gettys

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For fictional political boss from the film Citizen Kane, see Sources for Citizen Kane § Jim W. Gettys.
Jim Gettys at linux.conf.au, January 2006.

Jim Gettys (born 15 October 1953) is an American computer programmer at Google. From 2009 through 2014, he worked at Alcatel-Lucent Bell Labs. Until January 2009,[1] he was the Vice President of Software at the One Laptop per Child project,[2] working on the software for the OLPC XO-1.[3] He is one of the original developers of the X Window System at MIT and worked on it again with X.Org, where he served on the board of directors. He previously served on the GNOME foundation board of directors. He worked at the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C)[4] and was the editor of the HTTP/1.1 specification in the Internet Engineering Task Force through draft standard. Gettys helped establish the handhelds.org community, from which the development of Linux on handheld devices can be traced.

Gettys worked at DEC's Cambridge Research Laboratory. He won the 1997 Internet Plumber of the Year award on behalf of the group who worked on HTTP/1.1. Gettys is one of the keepers of the Flame (USENIX's 1999 Lifetime Achievement Award) on behalf of The X Window System Community at Large.

One of his main goals at OLPC was to review and overhaul much of standard Linux software, in order to make it run faster and consume less memory and power. In this context, he has pointed out a common fallacy among programmers today: that storing computed values in memory is preferable to recomputing those values later. This, he claims, is often false on current hardware, given fast CPUs and the long time it takes to recover from a potential cache miss.[citation needed]

Since 2010 Gettys has been a core member of the group investigating Bufferbloat and the effect it has on the performance of the Internet.[5]

He holds a BSc degree from MIT in Earth and Planetary Sciences (course 12 — EAPS).[6]


  1. ^ Gettys, Jim. "So long, and thanks for all the fish". Retrieved 1 February 2012. 
  2. ^ Interview about the One Laptops Per Child project, by LWN.net (June 2006): part I, part II.
  3. ^ "User:Jg". Retrieved 1 February 2012. 
  4. ^ Nielsen, Henrik Frystyk; Gettys, Jim; Baird-Smith, Anselm; Prud'hommeaux, Eric Wium; Lie, Håkon; Lilley, Chris (24 June 1997). "Network Performance Effects of HTTP/1.1, CSS1, and PNG". World Wide Web Consortium. Retrieved 14 January 2010. 
  5. ^ Gettys, Jim (May–June 2011), Bufferbloat: Dark Buffers in the Internet, IEEE Internet Computing, 15 (3), IEEE, pp. 95–96, doi:10.1109/MIC.2011.56, retrieved 2012-02-20 
  6. ^ HP Labs inventor profile: Jim Gettys at the Wayback Machine (archived August 6, 2007)

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