Sidney Michaelson

1925 - 1991

Pioneering computer scientist. Born in London, Michaelson studied mathematics at Imperial College, graduating in 1946. He lectured there, gaining interests in computation before joining the new computer unit at the University of Edinburgh in 1963. He was appointed Scotland's first Professor of Computer Science in 1969 and led the Edinburgh department to a world-leading reputation in the field. He also initiated a research project which developed an early multi-user computer operating system - the Edinburgh Multi-Access System (EMAS), which was the basis of computation in the university for decades. His other interests were in literary analysis, which he applied to works such as the Iliad and the Bible, pioneering the use of patterns to determine chronology and authorship.

Michaelson was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Edinburgh in 1969. His home was in Newington, in S Edinburgh, where he died. Michaelson Square in Kirkton Campus, Livingston, is named after him.

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