George E. Gerpheide earned his B.S. and Ph.D. degrees at MIT and U. of Utah, respectively. Early in his career he designed a successful golf simulator and a very-low-frequency polarimeter for oil exploration, and worked on networking and x86 co-processors for Macintosh computers. He designed and patented the first capacitive touchpad input device and founded Cirque to commercialize it. Apple was the first company to license the technology for use in its Macbooks. Cirque is now a subsidiary of Alps.