Valerie Landau and Eileen Clegg spent years in dialog with Douglas Engelbart and wrote a book distilling those dialogs. It is available as on ebook on Amazon

In addition, the book chapters are on this blog.

Today, we invite you to share your thoughts and memories of Douglas Engelbart who passed away last night.

Add your stories to the Remembrances: Doug Engelbart page

Engelbart Mural

Eileen Clegg and Valerie Landau created a mural and timeline showing the life of Douglas Engelbart. In the photo, Doug Engelbart is signing his name to the mural in preparation for its debut at Program for the Future.

11 Responses to “The Engelbart Hypothesis: Dialogs with Douglas Engelbart”

  1. Sara McPherson Says:

    This is so great, I read the book and just wanted to say thank you so much. I feel like I finally understand his message.

  2. Darla Hewett Says:

    What a joy to be able to read the book! I have read Doug’s papers and have really struggled to put his ideas into the right words. With the book, I felt like I was having a fireside chat. What a joy! So many times, while I was reading, I jumped out of the chair because I feel that I now have the right vocabulary to share things which I have wanted to share for a long time. Thank you Doug, Valerie, and Eileen! You have done a wonderful thing and I offer my thanks and congratulations!

  3. This was the clearest, most down-to-earth exposition of Doug’s ideas that I have ever read. Thanks to Doug, Valerie and Eileen for doing a superb job of condensing and explaining the work of one of the great thinkers of the 20th century. Readable, comprehensible and comprehensive, this is truly “Engelbart for Dummies” in the best tradition of that series of books.

  4. Eileen Clegg Says:

    Rob, thanks and always love your sense of humor (the third generation Princeton humor). You of all people know the challenge D, V & I faced in bringing the ‘vision’ into lay language. Many thanks for your comment.

  5. nina serrano Says:

    At last! I finally understand what has been going on these last decades that revolutionized my life as a writer.

    After seeing the three of you authors work together over the last five years, it’s a pleasure to to find it such an inspiring and uplifting read.

    I am recommending this book to all my friends who avidly use the computer but don’t understand it’s profundities.

  6. Peter Says:

    I read the book last night and was blown away. There were multiple moments when I was in disbelief at how brilliant some of these ideas are. I never knew the history of Doug’s demo or the history surrounding it. It’s incredible that the demo was so impressive the first reaction was, “this is a hoax.” Even more incredible is the realization that their ability to produce ideas so revolutionarily powerful, that people thought they were magic, was not because of the so stereotypical “lone genius” or because they had gathered the foremost researchers in these fields from around the world – indeed it would have been impossible to do such a thing since they were creating many of the fields they produced advances in. It was incredible to realize that what made the demo possible, and what is most significant about it, are not the artifacts it produced but the ability to use a methodology capable of producing such breakthroughs in such an unbelievable short time period.

    I remember Valerie trying to explain the A, B, C revision cycle to me. I understood some of it but couldn’t see its full potential. It seems clear that Engelbart’s insight was the creation of a stunningly effective thought development cycle whose remarkable applicability was clearly shown in the 1968 demo and the ensuing reaction to it. Yet, as much progress as had been made in computer technology, no one’s been able to push forward the core methodology which made the 1968 demo so effective. We have wikis, video conferencing, nearly ubiquitous networking and communication, we have all the tools.

    But, with the lack of breakthrough results rivaling the 1968 demo, should I conclude that Engelbart’s method was never again practiced effectively? Or, have there been demos rivaling Engelbart’s? If not, why not and what happened? Why haven’t we seen his demonstrably powerful methods applied more frequently?

  7. bdaul Says:


    Thanks for your observations…now if we could only get BACK to the FUTURE. Perhaps with the state of the world this is the time to bring out the ELECTRIC CATTLE PROD of Doug’s ideas. If we don’t get more collectively intelligent…

    BTW, isn’t it sad that bacteria and viruses are collectively more intelligent than humans!!!!

  8. Thanks for the book, it is really interesting as an introduction to Engelbart’s ideas. I’ve always been interested in improving mankind’s hability to cope with our huge problems, too. I want to read more about Engelbart’s work now, I am going to read his original papers.

  9. lunaculun Says:

    Love is only a dirty trick played on us to achieve continuation of the species.


  10. Adam Spring Says:

    Insightful, accessible and a fascinating read. As a non native to the Bay Area but a regular visitor it adds new dimensions to developments and personalities that not only shaped the development of California as the richest state in the US but also helped change the world.

    Anyone wanting to follow a dream should read this book.

  11. Any chance of another print edition? It will fit great on my bookshelf beside Points of View – the book put together for Alan Kay’s 70th birthday!

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