In this interview James Mitchell reviews his long career in computing, with particular attention to his tenure at Xerox PARC. He discusses how he came to PARC after graduate study in computer science at Carnegie Mellon in the second half of the 1960s, from which he immediately joined the Berkeley Computer Corporation. Soon after, Mitchell joined PARC with many other key figures from Berkeley Computer Corporation. He details his work at PARC in collaboration with Doug Engelbart’s laboratory at the Stanford Research Institute, and the connection of this work to Mitchell’s development of the programming language MESA. He also details his involvement with the “Pendery Papers” at PARC. Mitchell continues to detail his activities with Acorn Computer’s Palo Alto research center in the first half of the 1980s and then at Sun Microsystems, where he became a VP and Fellow to 2010. The interview concludes with his discussion of his work as Oracle’s VP for photonics to 2012, and his current involvements.
Brock, David C., Interviewer
Mitchell, James G., Interviewee
Computer History Museum
Place of Publication
Santa Barbara, CA
Programming Languages; Mesa; Java; Xerox PARC; Acorn Computers; ARM; Stanford Research Institute; Engelbart, Douglas; Gosling, James; Sun Microsystems; Oracle