Phil Lapsley

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Philip D. Lapsley (born 1965) is an electrical engineer, hacker, author and entrepreneur.

Early life[edit]

Lapsley attended the University of California, Berkeley in the 1980s, graduating with a B.S. and M.S. in electrical engineering and computer science in 1988 and 1991. While there he became involved in the Berkeley UNIX project and co-founded the eXperimental Computing Facility, where he was involved in defending against the Morris worm in 1988.

Lapsley received an M.B.A. from the MIT Sloan School of Management.


Lapsley co-authored RFC 977, Network News Transfer Protocol (NNTP),[1] an Internet standard for transmission of USENET news articles, and was the primary developer of the NNTP reference implementation, nntpd. After leaving Berkeley he co-founded Berkeley Design Technology, Inc., a digital signal processing technology advisory firm, and is the author of a book on DSP processors.[2] He later co-founded SmartTouch, a biometric financial transaction processing company.

Lapsley worked at McKinsey & Company as a management consultant until 2008.

His book Exploding the Phone, on the history of phone phreaking, was published by Grove/Atlantic in February, 2013.[3]


  1. ^ Network News Transfer Protocol: A Proposed Standard for the Stream-Based Transmission of News, Request for Comments 977, Brian Kantor and Phil Lapsley, February 1986
  2. ^ DSP Processor Fundamentals: Architectures and Features (IEEE Press Series on Signal Processing), Phil Lapsley, Jeff Bier, Amit Shoham, and Edward A. Lee, IEEE-Wiley, February 1997, ISBN 978-0-7803-3405-2
  3. ^ Exploding the Phone website