London, October 4th 2010
The Economist names John Cioffi its 2010 Computing and
Telecommunications Innovation Award winne
Joining the host of winning innovators at this year's Economist Innovation Awards John Cioffi has been announced today as Computing and Telecommunications winner 2010 for his advances in Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) technology.
Dr Cioffi is known as the father of DSL, which is used by telephone companies to provide high-speed broadband over standard copper telephone lines. As a 23-year-old engineer in the 1970s, he calculated that high-speed data transmission was possible, at speeds of up to 1.5 megabits per second, over telephone lines. He was virtually laughed out of the room by his seniors and it took him more than a decade to prove them wrong. His subsequent research at Stanford University in the 1980s laid the foundations for DSL, which is now the most widespread form of fixed broadband. John Cioffi continues to increase DSL's speed and reliability through ASSIA, a company of which he is founding CEO.
Commenting on the award decision by a panel of independent judges, Tom Standage, Digital Editor at The Economist said, "John Cioffi is a prolific innovator, with more than 400 papers and over 100 patents to his name. There is no question that his pioneering work on DSL has both succeeded commercially and changed the world for the better. Dr Cioffi continues to improve the speed of internet links through ASSIA, a company that helps telecoms operators tune the performance of their DSL lines. His incredible tenacity in promoting the idea of DSL is an example to innovators everywhere, and has more than earned him this recognition."
John Cioffi is the fifth of this year's winners to be announced. View the full list of award winners to date.