Matt Welsh (computer scientist)

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Matt Welsh
Matthew David Welsh
EducationNorth Carolina School of Science and Mathematics
Alma materCornell University (BS)
University of California, Berkeley (MS, PhD)
Scientific career
Mobile computing[1]
InstitutionsHarvard University
ThesisAn Architecture for Highly Concurrent, Well-Conditioned Internet Services (2002)
Doctoral advisorDavid Culler
Eric Brewer[2]

Matthew David Welsh is a computer scientist and software engineer and is currently the CEO and co-founder of, which he started after stints at Google,, and Apple.[3] He was the Gordon McKay Professor of Computer Science at Harvard University and author of several books about the Linux operating system, several Linux HOWTOs,[1][4] the LinuxDoc format[5] and articles in the Linux Journal.[6]


Welsh is a 1992 graduate of the North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics.[7]

Welsh received a Bachelor of Science degree from Cornell University in 1996 and Master of Science and PhD degrees from the University of California, Berkeley in 1999 and 2002, respectively.[8] He spent the 1996–97 academic year at the University of Cambridge Computer Laboratory and at the University of Glasgow.[6] His thesis was supervised by David Culler and Eric Brewer.[2]

Career and research[edit]

Welsh has led teams at Google and Apple Inc., and served a Professor of Computer Science at Harvard University. In November 2010, five months after being granted tenure,[9] Welsh announced that he was leaving Harvard.[10]

The Social Network[edit]

Welsh taught the operating systems class at Harvard in which Mark Zuckerberg was a student. Welsh was later portrayed by actor Brian Palermo in the movie The Social Network featuring Zuckerberg and the founding of Facebook. Welsh was reportedly paid $200 for his Powerpoint slides used in the movie.[11][12]


His publications[1] include:

  • Running Linux[13]
  • Linux Installation and Getting Started[14]
  • The End of Programming[15]


  1. ^ a b c Matt Welsh publications indexed by Google Scholar Edit this at Wikidata
  2. ^ a b Matt Welsh at the Mathematics Genealogy Project Edit this at Wikidata
  3. ^ McKendrick, Joe (28 December 2022). "It's the end of programming as we know it -- again". Retrieved 31 December 2022.
  4. ^ Google internal search for Matt Welsh at The Linux Documentation Project
  5. ^ Announcement "Linuxdoc-SGML v1.1 now available" 1994-06-07
  6. ^ a b Welsh, Matt; Kaufman, Lar (August 1996) [1995]. "About the authors". In Oram, Andy (ed.). Running Linux (2nd ed.). Sebastopol, California: O'Reilly & Associates. p. 631. ISBN 1-56592-151-8.
  7. ^ Welsh, Matt (8 October 2012). "NCSSM and how it saved my life". Volatile and Decentralized.
  8. ^ Welsh, Matthew David (2002). An Architecture for Highly Concurrent, Well-Conditioned Internet Services. (PhD thesis). University of California, Berkeley. OCLC 892830129. ProQuest 304740948.
  9. ^ Anon (2010). "Matt Welsh promoted to full professor; granted tenure". Archived from the original on 2010-11-19.
  10. ^ Welsh, Matt (2010). "Why I'm leaving Harvard".
  11. ^ "NCSSM commencement speech".
  12. ^ "In Defense of Mark Zuckerberg". 10 October 2010.
  13. ^ Dalheimer, Matthias Kalle; Welsh, Matt (2005). Running Linux (5th ed.). O'Reilly Media. ISBN 978-0596007607. Retrieved 2013-08-23.
  14. ^ Welsh, Matt; Hughes, Phil; Bandel, David; Beletsky, Boris; Dreilinger, Sean; Kiesling, Robert; Liebovitch, Evan; Pierce, Henry (1998) [1992-1996]. Linux Installation and Getting Started (2nd ed.). Specialized System Consultants. ISBN 1-57831-001-6. Retrieved 2009-08-14.
  15. ^ Welsh, Matt (2022). "The End of Programming". Communications of the ACM. 66 (1): 34–35. doi:10.1145/3570220.