Neil Gershenfeld is the director of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Center for Bits and Atoms. His unique laboratory is breaking down boundaries between the digital and physical worlds, from creating molecular quantum computers to virtuosic musical instruments. Technology from his lab has been seen and used in settings including New York’s Museum of Modern Art and rural Indian villages, the White House and the World Economic Forum, inner-city community centers and automobile safety systems, Las Vegas shows and Sami herds. Gershenfeld is the originator of the growing global network of field fab labs, which provides widespread access to prototype tools for personal fabrication, and directs the Fab Academy, the associated program for distributed research and education in the principles and practices of digital fabrication.
Gershenfeld has a BA in Physics with High Honors and an honorary Doctor of Science from Swarthmore College, a PhD from Cornell University; he was a junior fellow of the Harvard University Society of Fellows, and a member of the research staff at Bell Labs. He is a fellow of the American Physical Society, has been named one of Scientific American’s 50 leaders in science and technology, has been selected as a CNN/Time/Fortune Principal Voice, and by Prospect/FP as one of the top 100 public intellectuals.