About Bill Moggridge

The GRiD Compass, the First Laptop

The GRiD Compass, the First Laptop

Bill Moggridge was the co-founder of IDEO and director of the Smithsonian’s Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum. An outspoken advocate for the value of design in everyday life, Bill pioneered interaction design and integrated human factors into the design of computer software and hardware.

Bill Moggridge founded his design firm in London in 1969, adding a second office in 1979 in Palo Alto, in the heart of California’s Silicon Valley. He designed the first laptop computer, the GRiD Compass, and pioneered interaction design as a discipline. In 1991, he merged his company with those of David Kelley and Mike Nuttall to form IDEO. Bill was active in design education throughout his career, notably as visiting professor in interaction design at the Royal College of Art in London and consulting associate professor in the design program at Stanford University. He was most interested in what people want, who they are, and how they interact with other people, things, and places. He was the author of Designing Media (2010), which examines the connections between traditional media and the emerging digital realm, and Designing Interactions (2006), which explores how interaction design transforms daily life. Designing Interactions was named one of the 10 Best Innovation and Design Books of 2006 by BusinessWeek.

Bill was a Royal Designer for Industry, a 2010 winner of the Prince Philip Designers Prize, and a 2009 winner of Cooper-Hewitt’s National Design Award for Lifetime Achievement.

A graduate of the Central School of Design in London, Bill’s professional activities included those of advisor to the British government on design education (1974), trustee of the Design Museum in London (1992-1995), visiting professor in interaction design at the Royal College of Art in London (1993), and member of the Steering Committee for the Interaction Design Institute in Ivrea, Italy (2003).

To learn more about about Bill’s impact and influence on the world of design, you can watch a Cooper-Hewitt video about Bill’s life and work here and read articles in the New York Times here and here.