William A. Martin

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William Arthur Martin
Born1938 (1938)
Died1981 (1982)
Alma materMIT
Scientific career
FieldsElectrical engineering
Doctoral advisorMarvin Minsky

William Arthur Martin (1938-1981) was a computer scientist from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.[1]

After graduating from Northwest Classen High School, where he was a state wrestling champion, he attended MIT where he received a bachelor's degree (1960), master's (1962) and a Ph.D. (1967) in electrical engineering under supervision of Marvin Minsky[2] with a dissertation on "Symbolic Mathematical Laboratory".[1] While obtaining those degrees, he worked as a teaching assistant at MIT (beginning in 1960). He became an assistant professor in 1968 and was promoted to associate professor of electrical engineering in 1972. In 1975, he received academic tenure. He held a joint appointment at the MIT Sloan School of Management.

His research pulled him towards the Project MAC, which became the Laboratory for Computer Science and the Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, where he researched expert systems.

After finishing a Ph.D. dissertation on symbolic mathematics, Martin co-founded the Macsyma project in 1968 and directed it until 1971. Macsyma later became a successful commercial product and is also the core of the free Maxima system.

Martin then worked in automatic programming, knowledge representation and natural language processing.


  • Martin, William A. (1966). Symbolic Mathematical Laboratory (Ph.D. thesis). M.I.T. Project MAC TR-36.
  • Penfield, Jr., Paul (August 1, 2000). "William Arthur Martin". MIT EECS Great Educator Awards. Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Retrieved June 13, 2011.

External links[edit]


  1. ^ a b "William Martin - The Mathematics Genealogy Project". www.genealogy.math.ndsu.nodak.edu. Retrieved 2019-08-20.
  2. ^ "Students of Marvin Minsky". web.media.mit.edu. Retrieved 2019-07-10.