Poole, Gary Andrew An unsung academic. (University
of California at Berkeley Computer Science Department Professor and
Chmn David Patterson, a key developer of reduced instruction set
computing) UNIX World v9, n6 (June, 1992):57 (2
Abstract: University of California at Berkeley Computer Science Department Professor and Chmn David Patterson is one of the key developers of reduced instruction set computer (RISC) technology. Patterson played an important role in promoting RISC but decided to stay in academics rather than join the business world. He says he gets a sense of fulfillment from teaching, although he owns stock in Sun Microsystems Inc, has authored a best-selling text book entitled Computer Architecture: A Quantitative Approach, and earns a salary of about $100,000 from the university. Patterson tries to combine teaching and research, and he is not averse to a scrap when promoting ideas he believes in; he earned himself some adversaries with his support for RISC architectures in the 1980s among those who favored traditional complex instruction set computer (CISC) designs. The development of RISC and Patterson's role in the process are examined.