Ned Chapin, Computer Science Pioneer, honored at Silicon Valley Feb 2015 Chapter Meeting
During the February 2015 Chapter meeting, the assembled membership and guests honored the memory and life long achievements of Dr Ned Chapin. Ned Chapin was a long time member and frequent attendee at Silicon Valley chapter meetings.
Dr. Ned Chapin was also a founding member of the Computer History Museum. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to that museum http://www.computerhistory.org/.
Dr. Ned Chapin passed away on December 27, 2014. He was born on the Olympic Peninsula and grew up living in various locations in Washington, Oregon, and California. After graduating from Eureka Senior High School in 1945, he attended Stanford University where he played percussion in the Symphony Orchestra. He received an MBA from the University of Chicago in 1949. He served in the U.S. Army Corps. of Engineers during the Korean War. Upon graduating with a doctorate from the Illinois Institute of Technology in 1959, he moved to Menlo Park, California where he lived for the rest of his life. Although he worked at Stanford Research Institute (now SRI International) for 10 years, for the bulk of his career he was an independent consultant operating InfoSci Inc. At age 60, he took a job as Professor, and later Professor Emeritus, of Information Systems in the California State University system.
Dr. Ned Chapin was a leader in the field of Computer Science, particularly the discipline of Software Maintenance, from its infancy. Over his 61 year career, he published more than 250 papers and conference proceedings and wrote 8 books including "An Introduction to Automatic Computers" in 1955 (the second general purpose commercially published book on computers) and "Computers: A Systems Approach" in 1971. He was the founding editor of the "Journal of Software Maintenance and Evolution". He remained active in the field to the end of his life. For example, he was a panelist at the International Conference on Software Maintenance and Evolution in Victoria in October 2014. He was predeceased by his wife of 60 years, Dr. June R. Chapin, and is survived by his two daughters, Suzanne and Dr. Elaine Chapin, and one grandchild, Kiel Chapin-Riddle. His hobbies included reading science fiction novels, listening to Jazz vocals, hunting for mushrooms, and advocating a manned mission to Mars.