Roger Gregory

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Roger Everett Gregory
Nationality USA
Occupation computer programmer
Known for a key developer of Project Xanadu

Roger Everett Gregory is a US computer programmer, technologist, and scientist. Gregory's work in project Xanadu made him one of earliest pioneers of hypertext technology, which helped lay the foundations for the hyperlink technology that underlies the World Wide Web.[1][2][3][4] Roger attended the University of Michigan as a mathematics major. In the 1970s, Roger founded the Ann Arbor Computer Club, similar to the West Coast's Home Brew Computer Club.

In 1974 Gregory met Theodore Holm (Ted) Nelson, the author of Computer Lib/Dream Machines, and the thinker who coined the term "hypertext".[2] The pair became friends. In 1979 Nelson convinced Gregory to move from Michigan and join him in Swarthmore, Pennsylvania, the small, sleepy college town outside of Philadelphia where Nelson earned his undergraduate degree, and first conceived the concept of a hypertext. Gregory's first summer in Swarthmore, characterized by Xanadu insiders as the "Swarthmore Summer", was a productive time, where Nelson and Gregory enjoyed the collaboration of other volunteers, including Stuart Green and Mark S. Miller.

In 1988 Nelson, Gregory, and other members of their team, all moved to Sausolito, California, when Autodesk, a manufacturer of Computer aided design software, purchased a controlling interest in the Xanadu Project.[5]

Later, as founder, CEO, CTO and Chairman of the Board of Xanadu Operating Company, Roger led design and development of a hypertext technology that includes quotable documents with version control, fine-grained, bidirectional links, the ability to track intellectual property rights, and a mechanism to pay royalties.[2] Gregory is also co-designer of a rotary rocket engine design based on the posthumous patents of Robert Goddard (U.S. patent 6212876 from 2001). Today he is a cofounder of Eyegorithm.

In 2010 Gregory was interviewed by the Internet Archive.[6]


  1. The Internet: Biographies. ABC-CLIO. p. 188. ISBN 9781851096596. Retrieved 2015-03-06. "Nelson, now teaching at Swarthmore College, gathered together a half-dozen programmers, led by one of Xanadu's most staunch supporters, Roger Gregory to bring the mythic software program to life." 
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Gary Wolf. "The Curse of Xanadu". Wired magazine. Retrieved 2015-03-06. "Nelson's book brought him growing acclaim, and in 1979, he decided it was time to gather his disciples. He called upon Roger Gregory to lead the effort. Although Gregory was in Ann Arbor, Nelson insisted that everybody move to Swarthmore so he could exercise his influence at close range." 
  3. Jack Birner, Pierre Garrouste, ed (2013). Markets, Information and Communication: Austrian Perspectives on the Internet Economy. Routledge. ISBN 9781134393220. Retrieved 2015-03-06. "At one point Roger Gregory, a founder of Xanadu, made a comment which helped us understand why his group is so interested in market process economics. The reason is that programmers, in their day-to-day experience, cannot help but learn the severe difficulties in getting large, centrally planned systems to work properly." 
  4. Pankaj (2005). Hacking. APH Publishing. p. 3. ISBN 9788176487207. Retrieved 2015-03-06. "Ted Nelson is running around with his Xanadu guys: Roger Gregory, H. Keith Henson (now waging war against the Scientologists) and K. Eric Drexler, later to build the Foresight Institute." 
  5. Denise Caruso (1988-04-18). "Three key execs leave Altos Computer". Retrieved 2015-03-06. "The Sausalito maker of computer-aided design (CAD) software for the IBM PC, has just bought majority interest in Project Xanadu, Nelson’s hypertext programming co-op project. Rumors as to the identity of the suitor, says Xanadu’s Roger Gregory, ranged from Lucasfilm to Hewlett-Packard to a military think-tank." 
  6. Belinda Barnet (2014). Memory Machines: The Evolution of Hypertext. Anthem Press. p. 81-82, 89. ISBN 9781783083442. Retrieved 2015-03-06. "In an interview with the Internet Archive, Gregory says he got a group together at Swarthmore and designed a system that he 'almost had working' by 1988, when he organized funding through Autodesk, an American software corporation (Gregor 2010)." 

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