Brewster Kahle, director and co-founder of the Internet Archive and digital librarian, will be the guest speaker at the School of Information and Library Science's spring commencement on May 14, 2006. The title of his presentation is "Universal Access to All Knowledge."
Since the mid-1980s, Brewster has focused on developing transformational technologies for information discovery and digital libraries. In 1989 Brewster invented the Internet's first publishing system, WAIS (Wide Area Information Server) system, and in 1989, founded WAIS Inc., a pioneering electronic publishing company that was sold to America Online in 1995. In 1996, Brewster founded the Internet Archive, the largest publicly accessible, privately funded digital archive in the world. At the same time, he co-founded Alexa Internet in April 1996, which was sold to Amazon.com in 1999. Alexa's services are bundled into more than 80 percent of Web browsers.
Brewster earned a B.S. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 1982. As a student, he studied artificial intelligence with Marvin Minsky and W. Daniel Hillis. In 1983, Brewster helped start Thinking Machines, a parallel supercomputer maker, serving there as lead engineer for six years. He is profiled in Digerati: Encounters with the Cyber Elite (HardWired, 1996). He was selected as a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2005, Upside 100 in 1997, Micro Times 100 in 1996 and 1997, and Computer Week 100 in 1995.
In 2005, Kahle was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Kahle is a member of the board of directors of the Electronic Frontier Foundation and a key supporter of the Open Content Alliance. He also serves as a member of the Louis Round Wilson Academy. His goal is "Universal Access to all Knowledge."