Palo Alto Weekly

Community Pulse - September 14, 2012

Bill Moggridge, co-founder of IDEO, dies at 69

Moggridge credited with designing first laptop computer, the GRiD Compass

Bill Moggridge, co-founder of Palo Alto-based design firm IDEO, died Sept. 8 of cancer. He was 69.

Moggridge was the director of the Smithsonian Institution's Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum in New York, N.Y. Moggridge is credited with designing the first laptop computer, the GRiD Compass, according to a Cooper-Hewitt press release.

"Moggridge pioneered interaction design and integrated human factors into the design of computer software and hardware," the release stated.

He was born June 25, 1943, in London, England. Moggridge graduated from the Central School of Design in London and was adviser to the British government on design education in 1974. He was a trustee of the Design Museum in London from 1992 to 1995 and authored "Designing Interaction" in 2006 and "Designing Media" in 2010, both published by MIT Press.

Moggridge founded his own design firm in London in 1969 and expanded to Palo Alto in 1979, according to an IDEO biography. He merged his company with those owned by David Kelley and Mike Nutall to form IDEO in 1991.

"With the co-founding of IDEO in 1991 with David Kelley and Mike Nuttall, he turned his focus to developing practices for interdisciplinary teams and built client relationships with multinational companies," the Cooper-Hewitt release stated.

He was a visiting professor in interaction design at the Royal College of Art in London and a consulting associate professor in the design program at Stanford University. He was awarded the Prince Philip Designers Prize in 2010 and received Cooper-Hewitt's National Design Award for Lifetime Achievement in 2009, the year before being named director of the museum.

He is survived by his wife of 47 years, Karin; and two sons, Alex and Erik.

IDEO has an office in downtown Palo Alto at 100 Forest Ave. and also has locations in Boston, Chicago, London, New York and San Francisco, according to the company's website.

— Palo Alto Weekly staff

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