Brendan Eich, official Mozilla Foundation photograph, August 21, 2012
|Born||July 4, 1961|
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, U.S.
|Residence||San Francisco Bay Area|
|Alma mater||University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign|
Santa Clara University
Brendan Eich grew up in Palo Alto, and he attended Ellwood P. Cubberley High School, graduating in the class of 1979. Eich received his bachelor's degree in mathematics and computer science at Santa Clara University. He received his master's degree in 1985 from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Eich started his career at Silicon Graphics, working for seven years on operating system and network code. He then worked for three years at MicroUnity Systems Engineering writing microkernel and DSP code, and doing the first MIPS R4000 port of GCC.
In early 1998, Eich co-founded the Mozilla project with Jamie Zawinski and others, creating the mozilla.org website, which was meant to manage open-source contributions to the Netscape source code. He served as Mozilla's chief architect. AOL bought Netscape in 1999. After AOL shut down the Netscape browser unit in July 2003, Eich helped spin out the Mozilla Foundation.
On March 24, 2014, Eich was promoted to CEO of Mozilla Corporation. Gary Kovacs, John Lilly and Ellen Siminoff resigned from the Mozilla board prior to the appointment, some anonymously expressing disagreements with Eich's strategy and their desire for a CEO with experience in the mobile industry. Some employees of Mozilla Foundation (a separate organization from Mozilla Corporation) tweeted calls for his resignation, with reference to his donation of $1,000 to California Proposition 8, which called to ban same-sex marriage in California. Eich stood by his decision to fund the campaign, but wrote on his blog that he was sorry for “causing pain” and pledged to promote equality at Mozilla. Some of the activists created an online campaign against Eich, with online dating site OkCupid automatically displaying a message to Firefox users with information about Eich's donation, and suggesting that users switch to a different browser (though giving them a link to continue with Firefox). Others at the Mozilla Corporation spoke out on their blogs in his favor. Board members wanted him to stay in the company in a different role. On April 3, 2014, Eich stepped down as CEO and resigned from working at Mozilla; in his personal blog, Eich posted that "under the present circumstances, I cannot be an effective leader."
On January 20, 2016, the company released developer versions of its open-source Brave web browser, which blocked ads and trackers and included a micropayments system to offer users a choice between viewing selected ads or paying websites not to display them.
At Brave Software, Eich co-created the Basic Attention Token (BAT), a cryptocurrency designed for use in the Brave browser. BAT launched its ICO on May 31, 2017 raising $35 million.
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Brendan Eich, a co-founder and long-time technical leader of the Mozilla project, will become the chief technical officer of the Mozilla Corporation.
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