Computer Industry Pioneer Kenneth Olsen Dead At 84

BOSTON (AP) — Kenneth Olsen, a computer industry pioneer and co-founder of Digital Equipment Corp., has died. He was 84.

His death Sunday was announced by Gordon College in Wenham, Mass., where he was a trustee and benefactor. The college did not release a cause of death.

Olsen was born in Bridgeport, Conn. With undergraduate and graduate degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, he founded DEC in 1957 in an old mill in Maynard, Mass. It grew from three employees to 125,000 workers in 86 countries.

The company pioneered the mini-computer and set industry standards in program languages, operating systems, networking architectures, applications software, computer peripherals, component and circuit technology, manufacturing processes and business practices.

Compaq Computer Corp. acquired DEC in 1998.

A memorial service at Gordon is set for May 14.