Richard Francis Lyon

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Not to be confused with Richard F. Lyon.
Richard Francis Lyon

Richard Francis Lyon (born 1952) is an American inventor, scientist, and engineer, who invented the optical mouse.[1][2][3] He has worked in many aspects of signal processing and was a co-founder of Foveon Inc., a digital camera and image sensor company.


Lyon grew up in El Paso, Texas, one of nine children. He received a B.S. from Caltech in 1974 and an M.S. in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University in 1975.

Lyon has worked at a number of Silicon Valley companies, including Stanford Telecommunications, Xerox, Schlumberger, Apple, Foveon, and Google.

Lyon is married to Margaret Asprey; they have two children.[4]

Inventions and research[edit]

In 1981, Lyon built the first optical mouse, at Xerox,[5] for which he was awarded two U.S. patents, now expired.[6][7]

He also did pioneering work in the following areas:

Awards and recognition[edit]


  1. ^ Markoff, John (21 Feb 1983). "In Focus: The Mouse That Rolled". InfoWorld (Volume 5, No. 8). InfoWorld Media Group. Retrieved 22 April 2015. 
  2. ^ Sol Sherr (2 December 2012). Input Devices. Elsevier Science. p. 221. ISBN 978-0-323-15643-1. 
  3. ^ DeCarlo, Matthew (2011-12-20). "Xerox PARC: A Brief Nod to the Minds Behind Laser Printing, Ethernet, the GUI and More". TechSpot. Retrieved 2015-04-22. 
  4. ^ Asprey, Margaret Williams (2014-02-01). A True Nuclear Family. Trafford Publishing. ISBN 9781490726656. 
  5. ^ Richard F. Lyon, "The Optical Mouse, and an Architectural Methodology for Smart Digital Sensors", Invited Paper, CMU Conference on VLSI Systems and Computations, Pittsburgh (Kung, Sproull, and Steele, editors), Computer Science Press, October 1981.
  6. ^ U.S. Patent 4,521,772: Lyon, "Cursor Control Device", Jun. 4, 1985.
  7. ^ U.S. Patent 4,521,773: Lyon, "Imaging Array", Jun. 4, 1985.
  8. ^ Richard F. Lyon and James J. Spilker, Jr., "Multisatellite Signal Simulators for the Global Positioning System", National Telecommunications conference, Dallas, Texas, December 1976.
  9. ^ U.S. Patent 4,494,021: Bell, Lyon, and Borriello, "Self-calibrated Clock and Timing Signal Generator for MOS/VLSI Circuitry", Jan. 15, 1985.
  10. ^ U.S. Patent 4,513,427: Borriello, Lyon, and Bell, "Data and Clock Recovery System for Data Communication Controller", Apr. 23, 1985.
  11. ^ U.S. Patent 4,796,227: Lyon and Schediwy, "Computer Memory System", Jan. 3, 1989.
  12. ^ Ivan Sutherland, Bob Sproull, and David Harris (1999). Logical Effort: Designing Fast CMOS Circuits. Morgan Kaufmann. ISBN 1-55860-557-6. 
  13. ^ Richard F. Lyon, "A Computational Model of Filtering, Detection, and Compression in the Cochlea", Proceedings IEEE International Conference on Acoustics, Speech, and Signal Processing, Paris, May 1982.
  14. ^ U.S. Patent 6,078,429: Lyon, "Color Separating Prism Having Violet Light Component in Red Channel", Jun. 20, 2000.
  15. ^ "IEEE Fellows for 2003". 
  16. ^ Mark Peters (6 November 2005). "Royal Photographic Society Award for Foveon sensor". 
  17. ^
  18. ^ Gilder, George F. (2005-01-01). The Silicon Eye. W. W. Norton & Company. ISBN 9780393057638. 

External links[edit]