John Harrison Wharton
John H. Wharton
|Born||September 21, 1954|
|Died||November 14, 2018
 (aged 64)|
|Significant design||Intel MCS-51|
John Harrison Wharton (21 September 1954 – 14 November 2018) was an American engineer specializing in microprocessors and their applications. Wharton designed the Intel MCS-51, one of the most implemented instruction set architectures of all time.
Education and career
John Wharton graduated from Northwestern University with a Bachelor's degree in electrical engineering in 1976 and a Master's degree in computer science in 1977, having earlier attended Yale University for two years before transferring to Northwestern. He was hired by Intel at the instigation of Tom Rolander, working there for 5 years before leaving to start his consulting company, Applications Research. He was a founding member of the editorial board of Microprocessor Report. He first spoke at the Asilomar Microcomputer Workshop in 1980, along with Carver Mead, Jim Clark, Dave Patterson and Gary Kildall. He first chaired a session in 1983, and became Chair of the workshop in 1985, a position he continued to hold through 1997. He was Program Chair from 1999 through 2017. From 1989 to 2004, with Dennis Allison, he coordinated Stanford University's EE380 course.
J. H. Wharton was the architect of the instruction set of the Intel MCS-51, commonly known as the 8051. The MCS-51 and its derivatives are Intel's highest volume microprocessor, and among the most implemented instruction set architectures of all time.
Wharton was the subject of a 1999 New York Times profile, and a 2001 article about his trips to Fiji to collect debris from the deorbit of the Mir space station. In 1996 he appeared on Late Night with David Letterman. His friends have created a memorial Web site.
- "John Wharton", San Jose Mercury News, December 6, 2018, retrieved December 6, 2018
- Orlowski, Andrew (November 19, 2018), "Influential Valley gadfly and Intel 8051 architect John Wharton has died", The Register, archived from the original on November 19, 2018, retrieved November 28, 2018
- Intel 8051 Microprocessor Oral History Panel (PDF), Computer History Museum, September 16, 2008, archived (PDF) from the original on February 25, 2012, retrieved November 17, 2018
- Legacy of Gary Kildall: The CP/M IEEE Milestone Dedication, Computer History Museum via YouTube, April 25, 2014, archived from the original on August 1, 2014, retrieved November 21, 2018
- Slater, Michael (August 25, 1997), "Looking Back on Ten Years of MPR: Personal History of MicroDesign Resources" (PDF), Microprocessor Report, archived (PDF) from the original on October 3, 2018, retrieved November 17, 2018
- Programs from the Asilomar Microcomputer Workshop 1975-2018 (PDF), Asilomar Microcomputer Workshop, April 25, 2018, archived from the original (PDF) on August 18, 2018, retrieved November 17, 2018
- Wharton, John (July 22, 1998), The Chip that Wouldn't Die: A 20-Year Retrospective, Stanford University, archived from the original on November 18, 2018, retrieved November 17, 2018
- Hafner, Katie (June 17, 1999), "Reinvent the Wheel? This Software Engineer Deconstructs It", New York Times, archived from the original on May 27, 2015, retrieved November 17, 2018
- Markoff, John (April 24, 2001), "My Fiji Souvenirs: Shells, Driftwood, Space Debris . . .", New York Times, archived from the original on December 23, 2009, retrieved November 30, 2018
- Bay Area Man Relives Time He Disrobed On Late Show With David Letterman, KPIX-TV, May 14, 2015, archived from the original on May 19, 2015, retrieved November 18, 2018
- John H. Wharton, archived from the original on January 26, 2019, retrieved April 15, 2019