Japanese Computer Pioneers

Aiso HideoAiso Hideo

Aiso Hideo was born on March 3, 1932, He graduated from the Department of Electrical Engineering,School of Engineering, Keio University in 1955 and completed the Master's course in Electrical Engineering of the Graduate School, Keio University in 1957. While he was a graduate student, he participated in "the research and development project of a transistor computer" at the Electrotechnical Laboratory (ETL) of the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) of the Japanese Government, where he learned lots of theory and technological skill concerning transistor circuits and digital computers from Wada Hiroshi, Takahashi Shigeru Nishino Hiroji and their colleagues. The first job that he was assigned in the project was the soldering of wiring on the back panels of the first transistor computer ever produced in Japan named ETL Mark III.

After serving as Assistant at the Faculty of Engineering of the University of Osaka, Aiso Hideo joined the Division of Electronics, ETL as Research Engineer in October, 1957, and he was engaged in the research and development of three transistor computers; ETL Mark IV ETL Mark V and ETL Mark VI. In those days,an important mission that ETL was entrusted was to transfer the ETL's advanced technological know-how to private enterprises that had a distinct intention to offer a challenge to develop commercial products by making full use of the transferred ETL's technology. As for the commercialization of domestic digital computers, he actually played a prominent role in the design and implementation of each of the first digital computers in NEC Corporation, Hitachi Ltd., Hokushin Electric C., Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., and Unoke Electronics (present PFU) Co..

After these precious experiences, Aiso Hideo took an opportunity to study a very high-speed computer at the Digital Computer Laboratory, University of Illinois in September, 1960. He actually had charge of the logical design of the arithmetic control unit for the very high-speed asynchronous computer called the ILLIAC II and he gained rich knowledge and considerable experiences of advanced computer systems,which were to play a great part in his research activities afterwards.

Aiso Hideo received the Ph.D. degree in Electrical Engineering from Keio University in 1968, for the dissertation entitled "Research on Computer Systems Simulation", in which he fully dealt with the performance evaluation of the advanced control unit implemented in ETL Mark VI.

Aiso Hideo moved from ETL to the Department of Electrical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Keio University as Professor in 1971. Since then the main subject of his research has consistently focused on computer architecture,and he has shown a deep interest in the novel research on for example automatic tuning of computer architecture, problem-oriented adaptive computers, multi-microprocessor systems, and next generation computer systems. For outstanding achievements in the research and technological development in the information technology fields internationally, he received four Best Paper Awards from academic professional societies (one in the United States and three in Japan), two Minister's Awards of MITI, Outstanding Achievement Award of the Information Processing Society of Japan,the Medal with Purple Ribbon from the Prime Minister of the Japanese Government in 1995.

Aiso Hideo served as Vice President of the Information Processing Society of Japan, and acted as Chairperson of the Steering Committee for several large scale national R&D Projects,including the Fifth Generation Computer Systems, the Super Computer Systems,and the Interoperable Information Processing Systems ,all financially assisted by MITI.

Since Aiso Hideo moved to Keio University to served as Professor,he had made efforts to reform the education and research systems, As a result, he endeavored with great success to establish the Faculty of Environmental Information and the Graduate School of Media and Governance in Keio University, which provided cross-disciplinary characteristics based on the literacy of information and communication technology,and he served as the first Dean and Graduate Chairperson for both institutes.

Aiso Hideo Retired from Keio University in 1999, and he was granted the title of Professor Emeritus, then immediately he moved to the Tokyo University of Technology to establish the School of Media Science, the first school that Japan ever produced, and served as the first Dean. He was elected President in June, 1999, and since then he has been carrying out his duties as President.

Aiso Hideo was awarded the Order of the Sacred Treasure, Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon from the Emperor of Japan in April, 2006, for pioneering and sustaining contributions not only to the advancement of academic disciplines in university, but also to the remarkable promotion of technological development and application in the field of information technology

(As of June 30, 2006)