Wall of Fame – pioneers of the digital world

Part of the exhibition
Part of the exhibition

The HNF's focus in its efforts to impart technological knowledge is on people. The museum does this not just because this policy is in line with its way of thinking, but also because biographical descriptions help to make historical processes more accessible: People are, by their very nature, curious about other people.

The Wall of Fame uses selected biographies to describe historical achievements in computer development, deployment and propagation since 1945. It continues the theme of the Hall of Fame on the first floor in terms of both chronology and content.

152 members

The 152 members of the Wall of Fame were assembled by subdividing computer technology and related fields into 36 categories and determining an outstanding personality or group for each. Additional pioneers are also mentioned in each section. One page is devoted to each pioneer and includes photos, biographical text and additional media.

Notable scientific, technical, creative or entrepreneurial achievements were crucial factors in the selection of the personalities. Innovations were assessed in terms of originality, extent of propagation and longevity.

American dominance

As expected, over half of the outstanding pioneers are US citizens, 13 of whom alone were employed by IBM. Besides IBM, other international giants such as Microsoft, Bell Labs, Intel, Apple, Sun and HP have also played a leading role in making technological history over a number of decades.

The Wall of Fame is operated via a touchscreen monitor which takes visitors directly into the 36 categories, granting access to the "major" pioneers. Once the selection has been made, the respective "secondary" pioneers can also be called up. Direct access to individuals is also provided via an alphabetical name bar.

Unlike the Hall of Fame, the Wall of Fame not only features people who have completed their life's work, but also those who are still active on the professional stage. For this reason - and also because the aim is to remain open to new pioneers and additional information - the Wall of Fame is set to be updated on a regular basis.

Members of the Wall of Fame