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"Then Xerox PARC came along with some wonderful almost open-charter funding and a very interesting culture."
Bean bags at Xerox PARC

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Click to play videoAbout Xerox PARC


Xerox PARC <1970>

In July 1970, Xerox at the urging of its schief scientist Jack Goldman, decided to set up a long range research center in Palo Alto, California. In September, Bob Taylor was hired to start a "Computer Science Laboratory." Bob visited Palo Alto and we stayed up all night talking about it. The Mansfield Amendment was threatening to blindly muzzle the most enlighted ARPA funding in favor of directly military research, and this new opportunity looked like a promising alternative. But work for a company?

These are the bean bags that were so famous at PARC. And one of the reasons why we used them we discovered it was impossible to leap to your feet to denounce somebody after you sat in the bean bag chair because you tended to sink into it further and further. So it had a way of relaxing people and it was very good for design.

Xerox management didn't really understand what we were talking about and instead was interested in "trends" and "what was the future going to like" and how could Xerox "defend against it." I got so upset I said to him, "Look, the best way to predict the future is to invent." Don't worry about what all those other people might do, this is the century in which almost any clear vision can be made!"