K. Eric Drexler (1955- )
Nanotechnology pioneer and concerned scientist born in Oakland, California in 1955 and raised in Oregon. Kim Eric Drexler attended MIT for his bachelorís and masterís degrees, and his Ph.D. in molecular nanotechnology in 1991, advised by Marvin Minsky. He established nanotechnology, the field of molecular-level engineering first proposed by physicist Richard Feynman, as a legitimate field with his first scientific paper in 1981. To help deal with the promise and dangers of nanotechnology, Drexler founded the Foresight Institute in 1986, which attempts to improve knowledge and collaboration through methods that include hypertext systems and bulwarks against insidious patents. K. Eric Drexler was influenced by Vannevar Bush, John von Neumann, Doug Engelbart, and Ted Nelson, and has influenced Lawrence Lessig, Eric S. Raymond, Bill Joy and Jaron Lanier.