Printing your child’s colorful artwork off the computer, or looking at the final results of a well designed website wouldn’t be the same without the color monitor. There are so many variations of one color, can you imagine shopping for a blue vase online on a black and white computer monitor? You may not receive the results you ultimately desire.

We at the Top SEO blog are dedicated to providing you the latest information on SEO and digital marketing, as well as the latest tech news but we also believe that it is important for all of us to know the history and origins of the technology that we all use on a daily basis, so we are starting a new series that we will call “The Modern Inventor”, each week we will write an article about an inventor who in some small way helped to influence the world in which we all live today.  If you have an inventor who you would like us to write about please leave a comment below and we will do our best to write about them in the next article.

Mark Dean – Inventor of the Color Monitor

Mark Dean – Inventor of the Color Monitor

We can tend to take many things for granted we forget that not too long ago computer screens were all monochrome and worked very slowly to do a fraction of what we use them for today. Behind the scenes, inventors like Mark Dean invented and developed many of the technologies that we have found to be necessary to our daily living. Dean is responsible for the color monitor we enjoy and he is credited with being instrumental for launching the personal computer age as his work has made the PC much more accessible as well as powerful.

Early Life and Education

From an early age, Mark Dean showed that he had a love for building stuff. When he was very young, he helped his father build a tractor from scratch. He was an exceptional athlete and student. He graduated from Jefferson City High School with straight A’s and then graduated from the University of Tennessee at the top of his class. His studies at Tennessee were concentrated on engineering and not too long after he graduated from college, he started to work at IBM.

Work at IBM

He proved to be an excellent engineer and continued to move up in the company. He and his colleague, Dennis Moeller, developed the Industry Standard Architecture systems bus. TheISA was a new system that allowed various peripheral devices such as printers, disk drives and monitors to plug directly into a computer. This created the possibility of much more efficient work as well as better integration. Dean continued to work on making the computer unit more accessible to the general public as well as developing its speed and power. By working on the PC he ended up developing the color monitor for the PC. In 1999 while leading a team of engineers at IBM’s lab in Austin Texas they developed the very first gigahertz chip. This was revolutionary technology as it was able to do one billion calculations in one second. Mark Dean owns 3 of IBM original 9 patents and has at least 20 more that are associated with his name.

Prestige and Honors

Even though Dean was experiencing great success while working at IBM, he continued his education. In 1982 he obtained his Master’s degree in Electrical Engineering from Florida Atlantic University and then obtained his PH.D. in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University in 1992. He was named as the Vice President of Systems Research at IBM’s Watson Research Center. Then later he was named the vice president in IBM’s Storage Technology Group. This group focuses on IBM’s storage systems strategy and its technology road map. Later on Dean was named as the VP for hardware and systems architecture in IBM’s STG (Systems and Technology Group). Eventually, he was named the VP of the IBM Almaden Research Center.

He has more than just prestigious titles and inherent responsibilities. Dr. Mark Dean was also named an IBM Fellow which is the highest technical honor that IBM bestows. Over the years, only 50 of the company’s 310,000 employees have been named Fellows and Dr. Dean is the first African American to receive this honor. In 1997, Dean and his friend and colleague, Dennis Moeller, were inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame. He was also elected a member of the National Academy of Engineers in 2001. His work in the field of technology has enhanced our lives in both the workplace and our homes. Not only have his works had a huge effect on the computers we use today and our access to them, his more than 40 patents pending are likely to continue impacting the world of science for many years to come.