Seymour Cray 1925-1996
What’s the person full name and who were their parents? • Seymour Cray • His father was a civil engineer who spent the earlier years of his career working for Northern States Power Company. • His mother provided his father with a social life to balance his technical job.
What’s their date of birth and did they have siblings? • Seymour Cray was born September 28, 1925 • During my research I could not find any listing of his brothers and sister or if he had any at all!
What’s their place of birth? • in Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin.
Where did they receive their childhood education? • Cray was interested in chemistry and radio as a child. • Cray went to Chippewa Falls High School. In high school he became such a science wizard that he was the substitute teacher when the Physics instructor was sick.
Where did they obtain further/advance education? • Cray earned a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering in 1950 from the University of Minnesota. In 1951 he earned a master of science degree in applied mathematics from the same institution.
What’s their invention? • In 1972, Cray founded Cray Research, Inc. to design and build the world's highest performance general-purpose supercomputers. His CRAY-1 computer established a new standard in supercomputing upon its introduction in 1976, and his CRAY-2 computer system, introduced in 1985, moved supercomputing forward yet again. • In July 1989, he started Cray Computer Corporation to continue to expand the frontiers of scientific and engineering supercomputing. He was able to incorporate gallium arsenide logic design and micro-miniature supercomputers. The CRAY-4 achieved a clock speed of one nanosecond. • Mr. Cray is the inventor of a number of technologies that have been patented by the companies for which he has worked. Among the more significant are the CRAY-1 vector register technology, the cooling technologies for the CRAY computers, the CDC 6600 freon-cooling system, a magnetic amplifier for ERA, the three-dimensional interconnected module assembly used in the CRAY-3 and the CRAY-5, and gallium arsenide logic design.
How has this invention been used in our century for the betterment of our society? • Supercomputers have been used to improve car and plane safety, predict dangerous weather accurately, and to design life-saving drugs quickly. The CRAY-1 is an early example of a class of machines called "supercomputers," so named because of their ability to solve very complex mathematical problems that ordinary computers-even large commercial systems-cannot practically handle.
What technological Advances/Developments came about because of their invention? • Widely considered to be the founder of supercomputing, Seymour Cray was known for his passion for technological creativity and his constant search for new ideas. In 1958, Seymour Cray built the first completely transistorized supercomputer for the Control Data Corporation. In 1964, Seymour Cray developed the CDC 6600, which was the first architecture to use functional parallelism. • A supercomputer refers to the class of most powerful computer systems world-wide at the time of reference. The term supercomputer was first applied to the Cray-1 computer. Supercomputers can cost in the billions and have extremely vast capabilities.
Did someone help with the invention or who used the innovation process to enhance this development? • After being a member of a design group for the development of two computers, Cray was set on his own for the development of the next computer. Cray took to working odd hours to avoid distractions from coworkers. Working odd hours became a permanent part of his life. Cray's theory on designing his computers became one of responding to the criticism of customers. He would address the problems and build on them for the next try. The first computer Cray designed by himself was the 1103 computer. From this generation down the line to his Cray-4, Cray integrated the qualities and the solutions of previous generations of computers.
Is this Inventor still alive and, if so, where are they located? • On September 22, 1996 around 3:00PM, Seymour Cray was merging onto southbound I-25 from North Academy Boulevard in Colorado. A Chevrolet Camaro was following behind him. Both cars merged into the left lane, but the Camaro tried to switch into the left lane and almost hit a Pontiac Grand Prix in the left lane. The Grand Prix swerved off the road onto the shoulder then back onto the road and hit the Camaro. The Camaro spun onto the medium, but the Grand Prix swerved more and rammed the left-rear door of Cray's Cherokee. • The Cherokee spun counter-clockwise before rolling three times and coming to a halt in the middle of the lane. Cray suffered a broken neck, broken ribs, and severe head injuries. Cray was taken in an ambulance to Penrose Hospital where he received surgery to relieve brain swelling. Cray remained in critical and unstable condition until October 5th when Seymour Cray was pronounced dead at 2:53AM.
WORKS CITED • Aaseng, Nathan. Business Builders in Computers. Minneapolis: The Oliver Press, Inc., 2000. • Breckenridge, Charles W. “A Tribute to Seymour Cray.” 19 November 1996. SRC Computers Inc. 7 March 2003. http://www.cgls.ucsf.edu/home/tef/cray/tribute.html/. • Cohen, Sarah. “Supercomputer Legend Seymour Cray dies at 71.” Electronic News. 14 October 1996: 12. Badgerlink. 12 March 2003. • Markoff, John. “Supercomputer pioneer Cray dies from injuries; Inventor passes away at 71, two weeks after car wreck.” Austin American Statesman. 6 October 1996: A1. Badgerlink. 13 March 2003. • . Micek, Deborah. “10 Must Have Qualities for Business Success.” Family Business Strategies. 14 March 2003. http://www.smartbiz.com/article/article/artilceview/49/1/3.html/ • . Pepper, Jason. “Seymour Cray.” 17 February 1997. Biographical Publications. 10 March 2003. http://ei.cs.vt.edu/~history/Cray.Pepper.html/ • Schofield, Jack. “Seymour Cray: Prototype nerd who changed the world.” The Guardian. 7 October 1996: 14. Badgerlink. 12 March 2003. • “Seymour Cray.” The Times London. 28 October 1996: 25. Badgerlink. 12 March 2003.