Artifact Details


Widrow, Bernard oral history

Catalog Number







Fortier, James, Videographer
Hodge, Shayne, Interviewer
Widrow, Bernard, Interviewee


Computer History Museum

Place of Publication

Mountain View, California


33 p.

Copyright Holder

Computer History Museum


Bernard Widrow received S.B., S.M., and Sc.D. degrees in Electrical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1951, 1953, and 1956, respectively. He joined the MIT faculty in 1959 and moved to Stanford in 1959, where he is currently Professor of Electrical Engineering, Emeritus. He began research on adaptive filters, learning processes, and artificial neural models in 1957. Together with M.E. Hoff Jr., his first doctoral student at Stanford, he invented the LMS algorithm in the autumn of 1959, which underpins modern digital communications. He is a Life Fellow of the IEEE and a Fellow of AAAS. He was inducted into the National Academy of Engineering in 1995 and into the Silicon Valley Engineering Council Hall of Fame in 1999, among numerous other professional honors. He has won numerous other professional honors.

In this interview, Dr. Widrow discusses his early life and how he got into engineering, designing core memory for the Whirlwind computer at MIT, coming to Silicon Valley in the late 1950's, and creating systems and algorithms that can learn. In addition, he discusses his memories of Norbert Wiener, his work with M.E. (Ted) Hoff Jr., the creation of the ADALINE neural network, adaptive antenna systems, and his current work on integrating memory with learning.




semiconductor history; Least mean squares; Whirlwind computer; Core memory; Hoff, M. (Ted); Shockley, William; Signal Processing; Stanford University; Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT); adaptive learning; Artificial intelligence (AI)

Collection Title

Oral history collection

Lot Number