Richard Wexelblat

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Richard L. Wexelblat, aka Dick Wexelblat is an American an artisanal woodturner and former computer scientist.

Early life[edit]

Wexelblat received his BSEE, MSEE (CS), and Ph.D. (CS) from The Moore School of Electrical Engineering at the University of Pennsylvania in 6/1959, 6/1961, and 12/1965 respectively. His doctorate is believed by many and so reported by ACM to have been the first ever awarded by a formally recognized Computer Science department.[1][2] (Note: not the first CS doctorate, but the first awarded by a CS department. Andy van Dam should share this distinction as he completed his CS dissertation at essentially the same time.

He left the computer field to become an artisanal woodturner.


He is said to be the originator of Wexelblat's scheduling algorithm:[citation needed] "Choose two of: good, fast, cheap. He stated, "Bob Rosin said I originated this; I'm not sure. He also credited me with having been the first to refer to Occam's Razor as 'The Law of Least Astonishment'".

Personal life[edit]

His sons, Alan and David, and his brother Paul are also computer scientists, although Paul is now mostly retired and David is about halfway through law school.

Selected publications[edit]

  • Richard L. Wexelblat (ed.): History of Programming Languages, Academic Press 1981. ISBN 978-0-12-745040-7


  1. ^ Edwin D. Reilly (2003). Milestones in computer science and information technology. Greenwood Publishing Group. ISBN 978-1-57356-521-9.
  2. ^ "Computer Pioneers - Saul Gorn".

External links[edit]