TitleBaskett, Forest oral history, part 2
DescriptionIn this two-part oral history, Forest covers the full arc of his career from growing up in Texas, earning PhD in Computer Science from the University of Texas, becoming a professor, then entrepreneur and finally a venture capitalist.
His work at the University of Texas/Austin centered on early timesharing systems and computer performance optimization. After his PhD, he moved to Stanford University where he continued his work in performance analysis. He was also influenced by the work at nearby Xerox PARC and the development of the Alto personal computer.
Forest took a leave from Stanford to spend full-time at PARC where he was exposed to all the exciting work going on there. As a result, he was invited to join several startups, but for personal reasons decided on a lower pressure alternative and took the leadership role in establishing DEC’s Western Research Laboratory. After 4 years at DEC’s lab, Forest moved onto Silicon Graphics, where he spent 13 years in a CTO type role
His work at Silicon Graphics was exciting and varied. He was heavily involved in making key technology decisions, including decisions around potential acquisitions. That experience and his on-going contact with the venture industry led him eventually to join New Enterprise Associates (NEA), where he has had a very productive venture capital career for the last 17 years.