Douglas G. Fairbairn

Douglas G. Fairbairn

Exponential Center
Computer History Museum

Doug Fairbairn is a team member of the Computer History Museum’s Exponential Center, which captures the legacy and advances the future of entrepreneurship in Silicon Valley and around the world. At the Museum he also leads the Semiconductor Special Interest Group, which collects oral histories and artifacts from semiconductor industry pioneers.

Doug's career as an engineer and executive spans almost 40 years. After earning an MSEE at Stanford University in 1971, he joined Xerox Palo Alto Research Center, where he created the first portable computer and worked closely with Lynn Conway and Carver Mead in the creation of the Mead-Conway design methodology. As a result of this work, he launched VLSI Design Magazine to promote the basic concepts of structured, system-oriented design. In 1980 he was a founder of VLSI Technology, where he helped foster and grow the ASIC industry. Leaving VLSI in 1990, he became co-founder and CEO of Redwood Design Automation. After Redwood was sold to Cadence in 1994, Doug served in a variety of executive roles at Cadence. Since leaving Cadence in 1998, he has served on the boards of a variety of companies, including startups, public companies, and nonprofit organizations.