1995 – Hewlett Speeches

Box 3, Folder 60 – General Speeches


March 29, 1995 – Lemelson-MIT Award, Smithsonian, Washington D.C.

This award was presented to both Hewlett and Packard, and was accepted on their behalf by their old friend and former HP Lab Director, Barney Oliver.


3/29/95, Copy of a draft of Hewlett’s acceptance speech, which he did not present. [See above]


In this draft Hewlett says it is an “honor to have been selected for this first Lemelson-MIT  Award. He says the award recognizes invention, and encourages young inventors. In this connection, he mentions that he invented “our first product [at HP], an audio oscillator used by sound engineers, for my degree of Engineer.”


He says both he and Dave “recognized from the start that invention was the life blood of our company. We tried to develop an atmosphere that encourages creativity and innovation – a place where people are enthusiastic about their work, where they are unfettered by bureaucracy and where their contributions are recognized.”


Commenting on the world’s need for young inventors Hewlett says “ I applaud Mr. Lemelson for his recognition of this need and for his generosity in establishing this award. I am glad he chose MIT, where I received my masters degree in 1936, and a great university known for encouraging innovation and entrepreneurship.”


He closes by congratulating “the young inventor who will receive the $500,000 prize.”


3/29/95, Copy of typed remarks by Barney Oliver, on behalf of Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard

3/29/95, Copy of news release from MIT titled Lemelson Prize Chair Established at MIT

3/29/95, Copy of news release from MIT titled Innovation Prize Established

Undated, Invitation to “The Inaugural Award Ceremony and Reception for the Lemelson-MIT Prize Celebrating American Invention and Innovation

12/20/94, Letter to Hewlett from Lester C. Thurow, Chairman Lemelson-MIT Prize Committee, telling him that he and Packard have been selected as joint recipients of the first Lemelson-MIT Lifetime Achievement Award, for your countless contributions to American invention and innovation

12/21/94, Copy of a letter from Hewlett to Thurow, saying he is “highly honored and complimented by sharing with Dave Packard the first Lemelson-MIT Lifetime Achievement Award. He says he knows of no conflict in dates and “if I am physically able I would certainly plan to be present on this occasion”

1/4/95, Copy of a news release discussing two impending court decisions bearing on patent law

1/18/95, Letter to Hewlett from Leslie Amparo, public relations organization representing the Lemelson-MIT Prize. Mr. Amparo says they would like to come to Palo Alto and make a short video tape of both Hewlett and Packard.

1/18/95,  One unsigned typewritten page with notes from meeting with Roy Verley, HP PR Director, about the video taping

1/20/95, Copy of a note from Judy Arluck, Hewlett secretary, to Roy Verley, attaching a letter, dated 1/20/95 from Leslie Millenson, discussing arrangements for the video taping

2/14/95, Copy of a letter from Leslie Millenson, video people, to Mary Ann Easley confirming arrangements for video taping and interviews February 16 and 17

2/20/95, Letter to Hewlett from Leslie Joan Millenson, PR Officer for the Lemelson-MIT Prize, thanking him for participating in the video taping

2/20/95, Letter from Leslie Joan Millenson, to Judy Arluck thanking her for her help in making the video

2/22/95, Note to file confirming a call from Marie Southwick of the Lemelson-MIT committee saying they would be happy to invite guests as the Hewletts may wish, and will also pay for travel and hotel accommodations

2/24/95, Note to Marie Southwick from Judy Arluck sending biographical material on Hewlett

3/10/95, Copy of a letter to Judy Arluck from Annemarie Amparo discussing travel and hotel arrangements should Hewlett attend the award ceremony

3/20/95, Copy of a note from Hewlett to Barney Oliver enclosing copies of relevant background information about the award ceremony

3/21/95, Copy of a letter from Lester Thurow to Barney Oliver saying he is “delighted” that he will represent both Hewlett and Packard at the award ceremony and other activities

3/30/95, Copy of a newsgram sent to Hewlett, along with others inside HP, from Betty Gerard of HP PR telling about the award

3/31/95, Draft of a letter to Mr. and Mrs. Jerome Lemelson over the names of both Hewlett and Packard, thanking them for including them in the award, as well as throwing a dart at Congress for “having jeopardized the future of our nation by lack of funding for the great universities of our country.” This draft is attached to a note from Packard to Hewlett asking if this is OK. A handwritten note on the draft says Hewlett okayed it. A copy of the final, signed letter is also in the folder.

4/5/95, Letter to Hewlett from Rep. Anna Eshoo, House of Representatives, to Hewlett congratulating him on the award

5/22/95, Copy of a letter from Hewlett to Rep. Eshoo thanking her for her letter.

4/11/95, Letter to Hewlett from Annemarie Amparo, attaching a copy of a letter to the Lemelson-MIT Prize committee from Vice-President Gore congratulating them, the winners, and Hewlett and Packard.

4/13/95, Letter to Hewlett from John G. Linvill telling how much he “has always enjoyed and benefited from our interactions over the years I have been at Stanford.”

5/22/95, Copy of a letter to John Linvill from Hewlett thanking him for his letter

4/17/95, Letter to Hewlett from Jim Cunneen, California Assembly member congratulating him on the Lemelson-MIT Lifetime Achievement Award

5/10/95, Copy of a letter to Cunneen from Hewlett thanking him for his letter

4/18/95, Letter to Hewlett from Charles M. Vest congratulating him on the award

4/26/95, Letter to Hewlett from Elliott Levinthal, Professor-Research Emeritus at Stanford to which he attaches copies of letters he has written to Jerome Lemelson without getting a response. He expresses the hope that Hewlett may take an opportunity to contact Lemelson on behalf of Stanford.

5/10/95, Copy of a letter from Hewlett to Elliott Levinthal saying he doesn’t feel he has any “particular entrée” to Mr. Lemelson

5/1/95, Letter to Hewlett from Annemarie Amparo sending him The Lemelson-MIT Lifetime Achievement Award noting that the lead crystal hologram is illuminated by Hewlett-Packard LEDs. She encloses a copy of the videotape prepared for the ceremony.

6/19/95, Copy of a letter to Annemarie Amparo from Hewlett thanking her for the videotape and the hologram

5/31/95, Copy of a letter from Hewlett to Lester Thurow saying he was greatly honored to jointly receive the first Lemelson-MIT Lifetime Achievement Award and was sorry he was unable to attend. He thanks Thurow for using Hewlett-Packard LEDs in the hologram on the award.

5/2/95, Copy of a letter to Hewlett from Paul E. Gray of MIT offering congratulations on the award and saying he will be in California and would like to visit with Hewlett and tell him about plans at MIT

4/2/98, Handwritten note to Hewlett from Lester Thurow wishing him a ”speedy recovery”


Clipping from San Jose Mercury News newspaper


Various dates, Series of news releases issued by The Lemelson-MIT Prize



Box 3, Folder 61 – General Speeches


December 1, 1995 –  Barney Oliver Memorial Service, Palo Alto. CA


12/1/95, Copy of typewritten text of Hewlett’s remarks


Hewlett says that he must have first met Barney Oliver in his early years at Stanford. “After he graduated from Cal Tech and Stanford, he went to work at Bell Labs. Whenever I went back east I always tried to visit him, as I was impressed with his abilities and felt he would be a major addition to the company.”


Hewlett tells a little story about Barney: “I know that when he was about a junior at Stanford, Professor Terman was going to teach a course in radio engineering (electronics now). Barney was interested in taking the course. Professor Terman was doubtful, because at that time Barney was only a junior. However, Barney insisted and Professor Terman told him, ‘Fine, We’ill see how you do in the mid-terms.’ The mid-terms came up and Barney got the highest grade in the class!”


When Hewlett and Packard started The Hewlett-Packard Company in the late 1930s they asked Barney if he would join them – but he said he was happy at Bell Labs. However, a few years later Barney decided to move west and he agreed to join HP, in 1952.


At HP Barney was appointed the Director of Research, elected a vice president, a member of the Board of Directors, and head of HP Labs. “At that time,” Hewlett says, “we allocated 10% of our net income to the manufacturing divisions to carry on their own development programs. This turned out to be too narrow a spectrum and we set up HP Labs. Its charter was very broad. The funds allocated to the Labs were approximately 1% of net income to freelance in whatever area they saw fit. Sometimes they chose to help a manufacturing division increase their research program.


“Sometimes the Lab started programs of their own in a promising field, which [if it] subsequently proved interesting, [might later be] transferred to one of the manufacturing divisions. Thus, between the Labs and manufacturing divisions we covered a fairly broad spectrum of activities.


Hewlett says he remembers Barney presenting an enthusiastic description of an outside inventor at one of their management meetings: “Tom Osborne’s invention was for a simplified computer structure. This subsequently turned into the 9100 project, one of the most successful ventures in the field of computers. This gave me an opportunity to observe Barney as a mathematician, a surveyor, an astronomer, a salesman and a valid repair technician!


“Barney was also a wonderful role model of how to apply logic to practical problems. An example: Barney’s help with the case of our first mini-computer. We had it all designed and the specifications set. Only we discovered there was no room for the power supply in the model. This was exactly the kind of problem Barney loved and right then and there, he invented a very different kind of power supply –much lighter and smaller that would fit into the space available.”


Hewlett says Barney “…not only taught the engineering staff technical matters, but he also taught them how to speak the King’s English. An example: ‘Data’ was a plural noun, not a singular noun. If used as singular noun, he would probably jump on you – I never forgot it!


“Barney’s interests were so catholic it was hard to constrain them to narrower fields. For instance, he became interested in other subjects. such as astronomy – which led to the SETI Program – Search for Extra Terrestrial Intelligence. He also became interested in the use of an ordinary garden pest for controlling troublesome insects. This was by developing a strain of nematodes, who were insectivorous. With the help of HP, he set up a company to produce these nematodes. It turned out they had limited value, but had importance in some cases. Although we subsequently backed out of this, it was an example of his breadth of interests.


“Barney left an indelible mark on the company and will always be recognized as the great genius that he really was.”


12/1/95, Copy of the Memorial Service Program

1994 – Hewlett Speeches

Box 3, Folder 59 – General Speeches

1/14/94 [date received  by WRH], Note to Hewlett from Richard Goldman enclosing a photograph evidently taken at the conference

1/14/94, Copy of a letter to Goldman from Hewlett thanking him for the photo and saying “I shine in your reflected glory.”

1993 – Hewlett Speeches

Box 3, Folder 56 – General Speeches


June 15, 1993 – Farewell Message to Peter Voll, No location given, probably Stanford


6/15/93, Copy of typewritten speech by Hewlett


Hewlett says it is hard to believe that Peter Voll has been organizing trips for the Stanford Alumni for 18 years – 436 of them. He says he has been on seven of them, and he reminisces about some of these. He closes saying, “Peter, we really will miss you. You have been a major contributor to Stanford Alumni and served as an example to many universities to set up and operate similar programs. You have set a marvelous example and we are going to miss you.


“Good Luck Peter – Don’t forget all your friends at Stanford.”



Box 3, Folder 57 – General Speeches


October 6, 1993 – “Alternatives to Inventions,” Founders Award, Washington D. C.


10/6/93, Copy of typewritten text of speech


Hewlett refers to the speech given by Dr. George Heilmeier who was the previous award recipient. He says Dr. Heilmeier “talks about the problem of research in product development and problems associated with launching a new product.


Taking a different approach to the problem of developing new products, Hewlett says, “When Hewlett-Packard Company was small, we could not afford the luxury of maintaining a laboratory to engage in research. Rather, we had to depend upon our ability to take a proven idea and reduce it to practice. We were in a business that depended upon having a large number of items in the catalogs, rather than a few major devices, and we had to depend on taking proven ideas and making instruments out of them.”


“One way to obtain such ideas, of course, is to read all the literature. In theory, this is possible, but it would take a remarkable mind to acquire and collate all such information. There are certain alternative approaches. I would like to mention a few.”


The first one Hewlett mentions is taking a suggestion from a third party: ‘Have you ever thought of this?,’ and he tells of an incident involving Barney Oliver, who later became HP’s Director of Research. Hewlett had known Barney when they were both at Stanford, and Hewlett would visit him at Bell Labs from time to time when he was in the East.


As Hewlett relates it, they had, for years, been trying to “push the frequency range of our RC oscillators to the highest possible level, but we never could achieve a real breakthrough. One day, assessing our product line, Barney asked, ‘‘Have you ever thought of using a ring structure for this purpose?’ After he mentioned it, it was obvious that this was the way to achieve the higher frequency levels that we were seeking.”


Hewlett goes on to say that following this suggestion from Barney Oliver, they were able to develop an oscillator “that went from 10 hertz to 10 megahertz in 6 decades. This was a maximum frequency about 30 times larger than we had ever been able to achieve by conventional methods.”


Hewlett says a second source for product ideas is “taking proven technology from one application and applying it to another.”


As an example, he tells of one of their distributors who one day asked, ‘Have you ever thought of using the principle of a flux gate compass to build an instrument that you could simply clip over a wire and measure direct current?’


“Using this principle,” Hewlett says, “we were able to design such a device that would measure a curve as small as 3 megahertz. The field so measured was about 1/300 of the earth’s magnetic field. Such an instrument being a clip-on had the obvious advantage that one did not have to break the circuit to make the current measurement.”


The third possible source for ideas Hewlett mentions is “combining two or three technologies to create a different class of product.


“A good example,” he says, “was our first desktop calculator. One of our engineers had been pushing us for some time to get into the computer business, but we were reluctant to do so. Not to be discouraged, he demonstrated a calculator of extremely simple characteristics and yet very powerful. Unfortunately, it was limited to add, subtract, multiply and divide, but its simplicity and the fact that it used reverse Polish notation made it very effective.


“At the same time, we found two engineers in southern California who had devised an algorithm which could handle trigonometric and logarithmic functions. Whether these two ideas were compatible and could be combined in a single instrument was the question.


”The short study project demonstrated that the two were compatible and we built a very sophisticated desktop computer. Incidentally, we didn’t call the product a computer. If we had called it a computer it would have been rejected by our customers’ computer gurus because it did not look like an IBM. We, therefore, decided to call it a ‘calculator,’ and all such nonsense disappeared.”


“A different type of example on a broader base is the case where a broad technology has been developed and is readily available, but industry has not been smart enough to pick it up. An example was the work done by W. Edwards Deming and Walter Shewhart in the field of statistical quality control (SQC).


Hewlett tells how the Japanese, after World War II, found their production in chaos. They had great difficulty competing with the West, particularly in the areas of quality and cost. Deming, an American, went to Japan and taught the principles of scientific quality control. The Japanese recognized the value of quality control and were able to reduce the cost and increase the quality of their products. American industry largely ignored the Deming methods, and Hewlett says “Hewlett-Packard was a very good example of such blindsidedness.”


Hewlett says, he is glad that American auto makers have now embraced the Deming method, with a corresponding sharp increase in quality and productivity.”


“I cite these examples,” Hewlett says, “to show there are many things around us that we can borrow from or use – many approaches to getting ideas and turning them into viable products.


“I am not trying to denigrate the importance of invention. One only has to look at the transistor industry to realize what a tremendous change it brought to the electronics industry.


“But I hope I’ve been able to show you, through my own experiences at HP, that research is expensive and it’s uncertain. For this reason, it behooves management to make sure that there are some alternative proven techniques that can help reduce the total cost of developing new products.


“I’d like to thank the Academy again for this award and for the chance to share my thoughts with you on some practical alternatives for product development.”


10/6/93, 3X5” cards upon which Hewlett has written notes for his speech. Appears to be an earlier draft

10/6/93, Copy of the printed award statement

10/6/93, Copy of the printed program for 10/6/93 NAE meeting, including the award presentation

10/6/93, Copy of list of registered attendees

8/27/93, Letter to Hewlett from Chuck Blue of NAE sending a copy of the complete meeting program

5/25/93, Copy of a letter to Hewlett from Robert M. White, President, National Academy of Engineering, (NAE), saying he has been selected as the recipient of the 1993 Founders Award of the National Academy of  Engineering, to be presented on October 6, 1993 in Washington D. C. A press release announcing the award is attached for his approval.

6/8/93, Copy of Hewlett travel itinerary

7/14/93, FAX  from Mollie Yoshizumi (Hewlett’s secretary), to Douglas Wolford, NAE returning a redrafted  award statement

6/21/93, Copy of NAE press release

6/29/93, Copy of internal HP newsgram covering the award

7/8/93, Note to Hewlett from Steve Bechtel congratulating him on the award

7/16/93, Copy of a letter from Hewlett to Steve Bechtel thanking him for his note

6/22/93, Note to John S. Foster, Jr. from Hewlett congratulating him on receiving the Enrico Fermi Award.. A copy of the U.S. Department of Energy press release is attached

6/29/93, Letter to Hewlett from Chang-Lin Tien sending congratulations

7/7/93, Copy of a letter from Hewlett to Chang-Lin Tien thanking him for his note

6/30/93, Letter to Hewlett from Kumar Gollabinnie, an HP employee, sending congratulations

7/7/93, Copy of a letter from Hewlett to Mr. Gollabinnie thanking him for his note

7/7/93, Note to Hewlett from John Foster thanking him for his note and congratulating him on the NAE award

7/16/93, Copy of a letter from Hewlett to Foster thanking him for his note

7/6/93, Letter to Hewlett from Thomas E. Everhart, California Institute of Technology, congratulating him on the award

7/16/93, Copy of a letter from Hewlett to Dr. Everhart thanking him for his note

7/7/93, Note to Hewlett from J. S. Parker congratulating him on the award

7/16/93, Copy of a letter from Hewlett to J. S. Parker thanking him for his note

7/12/93, Letter to Hewlett from Shozo Yokogawa congratulating him on the award

7/19/93, Copy of a letter from Hewlett to Shozo Yokogawa thanking him for his note

7/2/93, Note to Hewlett from Barbara Cummins, SF Customer Relations Education Center, an HP employee, offering congratulations

7/16/93, Copy of a letter from Hewlett to Barbara Cummins thanking her for her note

6/29/93, Letter to Hewlett from George W. Heilmeier, the 1992  NAE Founders award recipient offering congratulations

7/16/93, Copy of a letter to George Heilmeier thanking him for his note

7/29/93, Letter to Hewlett from Charles E. Blue of NAE, sending a copy of the preliminary program for the NAE meeting

8/9/93, Letter to Hewlett from George H. Heilmeier, the 1992 Founders award recipient, sending a copy of his speech on that occasion

8/31/93, Copy of a letter from Hewlett to George Heilmeier thanking him for sending a copy of his speech

9/1/93, FAX transmittal letter from Ellen King of HP Labs to Mollie Yoshizumi sending copies of two articles about W. Edwards Deming’s work in Japan. No doubt research information for Hewlett

9/8/93, FAX transmittal letter from Hewlett to NAE sending his completed NAE Annual Meeting registration form

9/14/93, Transmittal sheet from NAE to Hewlett sending a ticket for the NAE luncheon

9/17/93, Copy of Hewlett’s travel itinerary showing trip from SF to Washing D.C. of Tuesday 10/5; Washington D. C. to Portland OR on Wednesday 10/6/93 for a visit to HP’s Vancouver WA plant. Also copies of travel tickets

9/21/93, Form letter from NAE to all meeting registrants sending confirmation of registration

10/5/93, Transmittal letter to George Heilmeier from Mollie Yoshizumi sending a copy of Hewlett’s speech for the NAE award ceremony

10/6/93, Letter to Hewlett from George Heilmeier saying he was glad to receive the copy of Hewlett’s speech and discussing his work on liquid crystal displays

Undated, Copies from a dictionary which shows definitions for such words as innovate and innovation. Again probably research for Hewlett

1/4/93 [should have been 1994], Letter to Hewlett from Robert M White of NAE giving him, for tax purposes, the appraisal value of the gold medal which was presented to him at the Founders Award ceremony – $4,410


NAE publications

10/6/93, New Members Yearbook

10/6/93, Annual Meeting Final Program

10/6/93, Section Meeting Booklet for the Electronics Engineering Section

Winter issue of “The Bridge” which contains a copy of Hewlett’s speech



Box 3, Folder 58 – General Speeches


October 7, 1993 – Howard Vollum Leadership Award, Oregon Graduate Institute of Science and Technology, Portland, OR


10/7/93, Page and a half handwritten by Hewlett with text of talk


Hewlett talks about Howard Vollum in the early days of his career. He says he was in Washington D.C. when Howard was in the Signal Corps, and he kept hearing about a ‘genius’ who was working on a radar to locate portable mortars. “These field pieces were giving our infantry a lot of trouble,” he says, “and by the time you could locate one of them using conventional means the mortar would be moved by the time you could do anything to counter it.” Without going into detail as to how Vollum’s device worked, Hewlett says it was very effective. “I was so impressed with Howard,” Hewlett says, “ that I wrote to Dave Packard and recommended he hire him.”


However, Howard came back to Portland and joined Tektronix a company that made oscilloscopes. Hewlett tells how HP and Tektronix each went their own ways for a while, but then HP decided to go into the oscilloscope business too – ignoring the adage, ‘Never attack a fortified position unless you have to.’


Hewlett says their first product was “a bunch of junk, adding that HP’s entry into the field served to “intensify Tek’s efforts. Despite all our best efforts we made little progress. We would make a technical breakthrough, and Tektronix would come up with something better. I think the best we ever did was to increase our penetration to about 15% [of the market.]”


Howard’s death,” Hewlett says, “was not just a loss to the company, but a loss to the community and the country as a whole. But we were left with an indelible impression, “Never attack a fortified position unless you absolutely have to.”


10/7/93, Earlier draft of talk handwritten by Hewlett

10/5-7/93, Copy of Hewlett’s schedule including visit to HP plant in Vancouver, Washington

10/7/93, Material from program folder containing schedule for October 7, as well as other papers relevant to the day

6/8/93, Note to Mollie Yoshizumi, Hewlett’s secretary, from the travel office with a suggested itinerary

3/30/93, Letter to Hewlett from Douglas C. Strain telling him of the forum on “The Technology of Business in the Pacific Century,” sponsored by the Oregon Graduate Institute of Science and Technology. He says that the Board of Trustees, Jean Vollum, and he,  would like to present Hewlett with the Howard Vollum Leadership Award as a part of the forum activities.

4/8/93, Copy of a letter from Hewlett to Douglas Strain accepting the invitation, and adding that he held Howard Vollum in high regard, and had once suggested Dave Packard hire him.

4/30/93, Letter to Hewlett from Thomas Wilson, Vice President, Development, of the Graduate Institute saying he is pleased Hewlett will be attending their forum.

5/13/93, Copy of a letter to Wilson thanking him for his letter

8/27/93, Letter to Hewlett from Douglas Strain attaching an invitation to a private dinner the evening of October 7.

9//13/93, Note to Hewlett from Andrew Ould [HP PR?], saying a Stu Watson of the ‘Oregon Business Magazine’ would like to interview him during his visit, and asks if Hewlett wants to comply. Handwritten note on letter says Ould advises interview cancelled.

9/16/93, Copy of an HP newsgram telling of Hewlett’s award – sent to Hewlett by Betty Gerard

9/17/93, Copy of itinerary, sent to Hewlett by travel office

9/24/93, [date received by WRH], Note to Hewlett from Douglas Strain confirming dinner on October 7, and notifying him of change of location

9/30/93, Copy of a letter to Hewlett from Tom Wilson, of OGI, attaching the schedule for the day of the award, plus a list of speakers with a short biography on each

9/30/93, Copy of a letter to Hewlett from Robert Mims of the OGI, attaching an agenda for the award dinner

9/30/93, Note from Mollie Yoshizumi to Hewlett’s daughter, Mary Jaffe, in Portland, attaching a copy of Hewlett’s flight itinerary for the trip there, and a copy of a letter to Hewlett from Dick Snyder, GM of HP’s Vancouver plant, discussing plans for his visit there on October 8

10/4/93, FAX to Hewlett from Jerome J. Meyer, Chairman and CEO of Tektronix, sending a copy of  a printed message to Tektronix employees containing a statement of  their corporate objectives

10/28/93, Letter to Hewlett from Douglas Strain, Vice Chairman, Electro Scientific Industries, thanking him for coming to Portland, and reminiscing about all the help he got from both he and Dave Packard when they were starting ESI in 1950. He encloses a statement of ESI ‘Management Principles’ much of which he admits was borrowed from HP.

June, July, August issues of “Elements,” a newspaper published by the OGI

1/12/94, Note to Hewlett from Lyle M. Nelson of Stanford, enclosing a clipping from an OGI publication which contains a photograph of Hewlett at the podium during the Vollum award dinner. Hewlett, although smiling, has his eyes shut. Lyle comments he “looks better with his eyes shut than with them open.”

9/30/94, Letter to Hewlett from Ed Coolly, OGI Chairman, and Dwight Sangrey, President, telling him that Sangrey is leaving as OGI  President, to be replaced by Paul Bragdon

12/18/97, Letter to Hewlett from Paul Bragdon, OGI President, telling him of OGI’s favorable financial status, along with a listing of recent grants



Box 3, Folder 59 – General Speeches


November 1, 1993  – “Silicon Valley,” Jewish Community Federation, San Francisco, CA

Same as speech dated 4/20/88 above


11/1/93, Copy of the typewritten text of the speech


In this speech Hewlett describes the history of Silicon Valley, particularly during its formative years, and the important role played by Stanford University.

“Silicon Valley did not just spring out of nowhere,” he says. “There had been activity in electronics in the Bay Area for almost 50 years before the transistor was invented. In fact, it was just 90 years ago that Marconi established a branch of his company, Marconi Wireless, in the area. He had already established radio communication to England from Cape Cod in Massachusetts. He wanted to use the new facilities at Bolinas, California, to establish a trans-Pacific link.


“Interestingly enough, the first semiconductor work carried out in the Valley did not use silicon but another element called germanium.


Hewlett suggests starting at the beginning, and he says the beginning starts with Stanford. “The founding grant of the University laid great emphasis on the professional aspects of higher education. The first President, David Starr Jordan, who himself was an ichthyologist of some note, attracted an outstanding group of faculty members in various fields of science and engineering.


“An early graduate in engineering by the name of Cyril Elwell became the archetype of the technical innovators that were later associated with Silicon Valley. Prior to Elwell, there had been some experiments in radio transmissions, including the early work on ship-to-shore and point-to-point communication. At that time, high-powered radio signals were generated by means of an electric arc, that is, an electrical discharge across a gap. It was not suitable for voice transmissions but it could be used for Morse Code.


“Elwell heard about an invention in Denmark of an improved arc by a man by the name of Valdemar Poulsen. This arc was much more stable than previous arcs. It used a large magnetic field and a special atmosphere to achieve this performance. Furthermore, it could be used for high-power voice communication. Elwell went over to Denmark and essentially, without a nickel in his pocket, bought the invention for $250,000 and then came back to the San Francisco area to try and raise the money.


The Poulsen Wireless Telegraph & Telephone Company was formed to exploit this patent. This name was later changed to Federal Telegraph Company. It is interesting to note that the President of Stanford, Dr. Jordan, invested $500 in this venture and encouraged other members of the faculty to do the same. The Federal Telegraph soon attracted a bevy of smart and creative engineers. One such engineer was Lee De forest who in 1906 had invented the Audion, the first vacuum tube. While working on the Audion in Palo Alto in 1912, just a year before I was born. He perfected the device so that it would both amplify sound and, in addition, was capable of generating stable radio frequencies. As a matter of interest, the house where De Forest did his work was not more than three blocks from where Dave Packard and I started our venture.


“Two young engineers from Federal Telegraph left the company in 1917 to found a new company north of San Francisco to exploit a new principle for a loudspeaker. The company so formed was the Magnavox Company which subsequently moved east and still is an active, well-established company. One of these two engineers, Peter Jensen, later formed his own company which became known as the Jensen Speaker Company. It is interesting that these loudspeakers made modern public address systems practical. In 1919, President Wilson addressed an audience of about 50,000 people in San Diego using these loudspeakers.


“In 1921, two young engineers by the names of Ralph Heintz and Jack Kaufman combined to form a company of that name that specialized in commercial radio equipment and made some of the first air-to-ground radio systems.


“The capabilities of this new air-to-ground system were dramatically demonstrated during one of the Dole Airplane races from San Francisco to Hawaii. One of the planes was equipped with one such radio, the power for which was derived by a small wind-driven generator. The faster the plane went, the faster the wind generator rotated, and the whine of the wind generator could be heard in its radio transmissions. At the time of the race, amateur radio was just coming into vogue and the communications from the plane were monitored by amateur operators all over the world.


“This was an era in which navigational instrumentation for airplanes was very primitive. The plane with the radio transmitter became lost in a cloud and could not tell up from down. Although he did not know it, the pilot started in a power dive, and all over the world, the increased itch of the radio signal indicated that the plane had picked up speed and was probably in a dive. Suddenly, all transmission stopped – no trace of it was ever found.


“Meanwhile, Federal Telegraph had been merged with MacKay Radio & Telegraph Company and eventually was acquired by International Telephone & Telegraph Company and moved East. Many of the engineers, being good Californians, did not like being transplanted and soon returned to the Bay Area. One such person was Charles Litton. Charlie planned to make the very large vacuum tubes required for high-powered radio broadcasting. Charlie was a superb mechanic and he decided that if he were to build good vacuum tubes, he needed a special lathe to assemble them. He designed and built such a lathe. Before he was able to use it, however, somebody from one of the larger radio manufacturing companies saw it and wanted to buy it. Charlie sold it to them and the same thing happened several times over, so that Charlie wound up in the manufacturing of glassblowing lathes and never really got around to building the vacuum tubes he originally intended to.


“This ability to make vacuum tubes was very important to this country during world War II. Charlie turned his plant over to his foreman with the understanding that these lathes were to be sold at cost on the theory that it was not proper to profit from the defense effort. Charlie did consulting to support himself. At the end of the war, he became frustrated with manufacturing and sold his company to some young venture capitalists who formed the Litton engineering that we now know. Interestingly enough, Charlie was offered $1 million in cash, or an equivalent amount of shares of Litton at the price of $1.00 a share. Eventually, that stock was selling for well over $100.00 a share – he had chosen the cash.


“Another company that had started before the War was Eitel-McCullough. They specialized in transmitting tubes for the burgeoning amateur radio industry. They were master craftsmen in this art and contributed greatly to the need for high-powered vacuum tubes during the war.


“Another legacy from the Federal Telegraph company were two very large magnets that had been built for the Poulsen arc but had never been used. In the early 1930’s, Ernest O. Lawrence was doing his first experiments with the cyclotron at U.C. Berkeley. Interestingly enough, my wife was taking freshman physics from Dr. Lawrence. She remembered how exciting it was when he would come into the classroom and announce that they had just discovered a new element, such and such, and discovered its characteristics.


“Like most college professors, Dr. Lawrence had very little money to spend. To have designed and built the magnets that weighed about 85 tons each would have been impossible, but he found these two discarded magnets and was thus able to build the first atom smasher. Another spinoff of Federal Telegraph was the work of Fred Kolster who perfected the radio direction finder. Many of the old-timers here will remember the name Kolster Radio.’


“You might liken the Federal Telegraph Company to a supernova, such as appeared a few years ago. A giant star explodes and out of its residue, many new stars are formed. It was from the residue of Federal Telegraph that much of the subsequent developments in silicon Valley depended – the ingredients were trained people, small companies, and above all else, the tradition of engineering at Stanford.


“Another example of pioneer work in the Bay Area was that of Philo T. Farnsworth who came to San Francisco in 1927 to perfect the first all-electronic television system.


“How did Silicon Valley get its name? Long before people ever heard of the transistor, there was considerable activity in electronics in and around Stanford. As an example, the Varian Brothers, while working in the physics laboratory at Stanford, had invented a device called the Klystron, a device that could amplify very high frequency signals, as well as acting as a source of such signals. In the early days of the War before the United States was involved, the Varian Brothers were very much concerned about the threat of bombing and sought a way to detect and locate enemy aircraft. They reasoned that if they could get a very narrow, high-powered radio beam, they would be able to bounce it off an airplane and detect some of the reflecting signals. To do this, they needed a radio signal that had a very short wave length so that a practical sized antenna could be used. This was the driving factor that led to their invention of the Klystron.


“To eventually exploit this invention, Varian Associates was formed shortly after the War. Another use for Klystrons appeared in a different form; atom smashing. Instead of having a curved circular path, such as the cyclotron, a linear accelerator was built, powered by very large cyclotrons. The practicality of this was demonstrated with a 200-foot accelerator and subsequently, with major government support, into the Stanford Linear Accelerator program (SLAC). A two-mile long device located in the hills behind Stanford.


“Shortly after the War, a young American engineer brought from Germany a magnetic tape recorder. The potentiality of this technique was quickly recognized by an old friend of Charlie Littons’s, Alexander M. Poniatoff, who founded the company, Ampex, which name was derived from is initials and ‘ex’ for excellence. This company led the field in audio and eventually video recording for many years.


“In 1947 Bell Telephone Laboratories invented the transistor that was to revolutionize the field of electronics. Arnold Beckman, a professor at Cal Tech who founded Beckman Instruments, soon recognized the importance of the transistor. He asked one of the co-inventors, William Shockley, to set up a company to work on semiconductors. Bill’s father had taught at Stanford and Bill himself had spent his early days in Palo Alto. It was for this reason and with a little coaching from Professor Terman that he selected Palo Alto as the site for the new company.


Fred Terman, who had been Dean of Engineering and subsequently became Provost, recognized the importance of an industrial park on University lands. He felt that there could be a two-way benefit from such a development. Industry could benefit by its proximity to the University and the University could benefit from its high-tech neighbors. This certainly proved to be the case. The Shockley Semiconductor Laboratory was established in 1955 and was one of the first tenants of the newly developed Industrial Park.


“Shockley was a brilliant engineer, but management was not his forte. He had accumulated a constellation of brilliant scientists and engineers, but they soon became disenchanted and sought financial support elsewhere for their ideas, Venture capitalists were not yet readily available and they turned to Fairchild Camera & Instrument for financial assistance. In 1957, Fairchild agreed to support the project and the company called ‘Fairchild Semiconductor’ was founded, with Robert Noyce as its President. Once the success of this new company was demonstrated, it did not take long before there were other defectors, and more companies were formed with financing now readily available. By this time, ‘Silicon’ was the preferred material and gave its name to the valley.


“But prior to any ‘Silicon,’ the Bay Area had seen the development of the Poulsen arc, the invention of the true vacuum tube, the perfection of the dynamic loudspeaker, some of the first air-to-ground communications systems, first radio direction finding devices, the perfection of the all-eletronic television, key work in the manufacturing of large vacuum tubes, the invention of the Klystron, the perfection of the magnetic tape for recording both voice and sound, and many others. Silicon came to a very fertile valley.


“I think in closing, that particular comments should be made about the role of Stanford University. As mentioned, it was indirectly responsible for the first electronics in the valley, based on the work of Elwell. You might even say that it pioneered some aspects of venture capitalism when President Jordan and his faculty helped finance the Federal Telegraph Company.


“Lewis M Terman, a Professor at Stanford in the psychology Department, is best known for the Terman-Binet intelligence test. However, he had a far more famous son, Frederick Terman, who was a great innovator at Stanford University. Fred was educated as a chemical engineer, but while taking graduate work at MIT, became greatly interested in the field of ‘radio.’ But he did a lot more than that. For one, he talked to two young engineering students, William Hewlett and David Packard, to try their wings in the field of ‘radio.’ It was Terman who had the idea of taking some of the unused land of Stanford University and converting it into an industrial park. It was Terman who conceived the idea of close collaboration between the University and the burgeoning industry in the area. He set up an honors cooperative program in the engineering school that made possible the opportunity for participating firms to be sure that some of their promising new employees might take graduate work at Stanford on a part-time basis with additional funds being paid to the University.


“Expanded enrollment in this program led to the use of television for providing teaching in remote locations. This was viewed with skepticism by many educators, but this criticism was soon quieted by the fact that many of the students participating in these remote sites had better test scores than the students in the classrooms. Terman went on to become the Provost of the University.


“More recently, in an effort to carry on very expensive and broad-based research in semiconductors, a cooperative venture was set up between the university and about twenty firms wherein these firms contributed towards the construction of a new $15 million laboratory for semiconductor research.


“I think it is safe to say that without Stanford, there would not have been a Silicon Valley.”


6/18/92, Typewritten research notes on Silicon Valley history listing several companies with a paragraph or so about each of them.

Undated, typewritten sheet giving a chronological listing of significant events in the Valley

6/24/93, Letter to Hewlett from Richard Goldman, of the International Leadership Reunion thanking him for agreeing to participate in their conference.

9/23/93, Copy of a note from Hewlett’s secretary, Mollie Yoshizumi, to Penny Brown of the ILR sending a biographical sketch, copy attached.

9/24/93, Copy of a note to file saying that Hewlett has invited a man named Harry Saal of Smart Valley Inc., to participate with him at the ILR conference. It adds that Hewlett has informed Goldman of this. A sheet with Saal’s address is attached

9/28/93, Copy of a note from Mollie Yoshizumi to Penny Brown of ILR enclosing a photo of Hewlett

10/22/93, Letter to Hewlett from Susan Mall of ILR giving logistical information on the conference day and enclosing a copy of the conference program

11/1/93, Typewritten note stating dinner with at Mr. And Mrs. Goldman at 7:00 PM

11/9/93, Letter to Hewlett from Richard and Rhoda Goldman Co-Chairs of the conference thanking him for his “very interesting” talk about Silicon Valley and attaching a copy of ILR program book

Undated, Photocopies of the covers and some pages from two books: The Big Score – The Billion-dollar Story of Silicon Valley, by Michael S. Malone; and Charged Bodies – People, Power and Paradox in Silicon Valley, by Thomas Mahon. An unsigned, handwritten “post-it” is pasted on one of them explaining that the pages mention Cy Elwell.



1992 – Hewlett Speeches


Box 3, Folder 54 – General Speeches


May, 1992 – Random thoughts on “The HP Way”, Santa Clara, CA

(See also speech March 25, 1982 – “The Human Side of Management”)


5/92, Copy of typewritten text of remarks


Hewlett says every company has its traditions, and at Hewlett-Packard these became known as “The HP Way.” In describing some of these “traditions” he starts with a brief review of the background of the company from which the traditions of the HP Way were founded.


“It’s important to realize,” he says, “that both Dave Packard and I were products of the Depression. When he graduated in 1934 Dave was one of the few people in our class to get a job offer. I took two graduate years and then came back to build medical equipment for a doctor. Terman realized that Dave and I would each go our independent ways unless he took some steps which he encouraged us to do. He arranged for Packard to come out to Stanford on a fellowship program that did not jeopardize his position at GE. This was in the fall of 1938.”


By January, 1939, Packard and Hewlett had decided to try to make a go of it and start a partnership, but they had no idea what they were going to do. Hewlett says they “started with about $500 worth of capital and set up shop in a one-car garage where Dave and his wife, Lucile, were living. Shortly thereafter, I was married and as both our wives had jobs at Stanford, they supported us until, by a sneaky move, they arranged to have children.”


“In the early days,” Hewlett says, “Dave and I did everything – kept the books, swept the floors, designed and manufactured various specialty products – anything that would bring in money. We built a clock drive for a telescope at Mount Hamilton. We made a shocking machine for a promoter that was thought to make people lose weight, and almost accidentally, took an idea that came from my thesis at Stanford on a piece of electronic measurement equipment called an audio oscillator.”


They sent out flyers to various university engineering departments and, much to their surprise, kept getting back orders. “One day,” Hewlett says, “we had a request from Walt Disney Studios. The engineer there wanted us to build eight of these products with a different set of electrical specifications….This was our largest order to date.”


Hewlett had a reserve commission in the Army and was called to active duty in the fall of 1941. By that time they had 17 employees and had set up shop in two small buildings near the corner of El Camino and Page Mill Road in Palo Alto. During the war the company built test and measurement equipment for the electronic industry, and grew to 250 employees.


After the war, Hewlett returned, but business had fallen greatly, and employment was down to about 80 people. “It was a critical time,” he says, “and we had to decide whether we were going to cut back and be a small company or whether the prospect was bright, keep the same corporate structure, and hope to move on. Fortunately, we chose the latter course.”


Talking again about the development of The HP Way, Hewlett says, “When we started the company we wanted to observe two principles. One, we did not want to borrow our capital, and two, we did not want to run a ‘hire and fire’ operation….We didn’t want that kind of a company. We wanted a company that was built around people.”


“In the early days there was very little to separate the owners from the workers. We were a single team and as we worked with our employees, we had an opportunity to observe what their lives were like and what the company meant to them.”


During this time they also decided to establish a form of a production bonus. “We chose a very simple formula that about 30% of gross income would be paid to our employees. This was pro-rated as a percentage of their base salary so that everyone from the top to the bottom (ourselves excluded) received the same percentage bonus….As the company grew in size…the earlier, primitive bonus plan was not effective and we agreed to save 12 % of our pre-tax earnings under a current cash bonus, paid on a percentage of base salary and a 10% contribution to the employee on a preferred [deferred?] basis.”


Hewlett tells of an employee who contracted tuberculosis and had to leave work for some two years. He says “Rather that let the full impact of this fall on his family, we decided that we would share an amount equivalent to what he would have earned, plus something to carry the medical expenses. After this experience, we decided we needed to formalize the process and so we were one of the first people to take out catastrophic medical insurance.”


“One of the first things we did was to say there will be no time clocks to punch. That was a statement that ‘we trust you.’ Later on, borrowed from experience in our German plant, we set up a program for flexible time of arrival. That means an employee can arrive anywhere from 6:00AM to 9:00AM, provided he works the full 8 hours. [It became a two hour window, 6:30AM to 8:30AM in most plants.]


“Another hangover from the early days was the open door policy. That said that anyone who had a grievance had a right to come in and see Dave or me. Admittedly, there was a certain screening involved in this, but if the individual had a good cause, Dave and I certainly saw them. This is a tricky road to follow because you have to be careful not to undercut management’s decisions.”


“Another technique that we used to democratize the company was the program of ‘communication lunches.’ Dave and  I would visit a plant and say that we would like to have lunch with 15 or 20 of the employees from below the supervisorial level. The purpose of this was two-fold – one, to find out what your employees really thought, and two, [to see if] your ideas were really getting down to them.”


Hewlett says his definition of the HP Way would be “that it was to recognize the status of the average person. Dave shows it a little differently but says the same thing – to observe the golden rule – to do unto others as you would have them do unto us.”


“Over the years, these traditions have become the very part and fabric of the company. At awards luncheons, I would very often say that the continuance of the HP Way is dependent upon the old-time employee. He says how it works and explains to new employees what it’s all about. These are programs that are very hard to legislate from the top. They must be endemic in an organization.”


“We had one interesting, although unfortunate, example of this earlier in the month. One of our sales employees was murdered in Baltimore and when the news of this spread, there was an outswelling of support and comfort to the widow and four children. A program was set up to provide a fund for the education of these children,  and in the first week, roughly $75,000 had been collected, to say nothing of notes of sympathy and understanding to the widow and her family. This is a program that was not sponsored by top management but from the ranks of the company, which is a true indication of the HP Way at work.”



Box 3, Folder 55 – General Speeches


October 19, 1992 – Meeting of American Institute of Physics, Palo Alto, CA


10/19/92, Page of notes handwritten by Hewlett


In his notes Hewlett states that it is not a coincidence that two papers are being presented by HP people.


He says the American Institute is an important organization with over 100,000 members, that can help solve some of the world’s problems “such as global warming, the ozone hole, as well as many aspects of pollution control.” He stressed the importance of science education.


10/19/92, Copy of typed list of attendees at meeting

7/15/92, Note from Barry Bronson to Bill Hewlett saying HP will be hosting the annual meeting of the AIP, 150-200 attending from around the US. Asks Hewlett if he would open the meeting with a 5 minute welcome.

Several AIP publications/pamphlets

10/28/92, Letter to Hewlett from Kenneth Ford, AIP, saying the meeting at HP was “one of the finest such meetings” they have had. They particularly appreciated the outstanding arrangements.

11/3/92, Copy of a letter to Kenneth Ford from Hewlett thanking him for his “gracious” letter.

10/16/92, Copy of a letter to Hewlett from Bill Shreve giving some background on the AIP along with some suggestions on topics he might mention

10/30/92, Copy of a letter to Hewlett from William R. Shreve, HP Labs, thanking him for his opening remarks

1991 – Hewlett Speeches

Box 3, Folder 53 – General Speeches


December 17, 1991 – Egon Loebner Book Reception, Palo Alto, CA


12/17/91, Copy of Hewlett’s comments on the occasion of the “Book Reception” for Egon Loebner who died December 30, 1989.


Hewlett says “It is hard to give a tribute to Egon Loebner that has not already been given.  He was of such a magnificent mind that he stimulated all round him. He was one of the most prolific men that I have had the pleasure to know.”


Hewlett calls Loebner the “father” of HP’s optoelectronics program,


On leave to the U.S. Government, Hewlett tells how Loebner was appointed to the USSR as Attache for Science and Technology, overseeing some 1300 joint research projects between the USSR and the U.S. To keep track of all these projects he turned to computer data base management. And when he returned to HP he changed to the field of computers and information management.


“While working half-time at HP,” Hewlett says Loebner “took eight computer courses at Stanford. He became interested in neutral networks and did a scholarly paper on the subject for the IEEE.”


Hewlett tells how, in 1985 Loebner was diagnosed as having a rare form of Epithelial cancer. He says “Not much was known about the disease and I remember Egon coming into my office saying that he was dissatisfied with the lack of knowledge and intended to study what was known about the disease and ultimately he devised his down regimen of treatment. I think he was the only patient ever to get invited to lecture on his illness to doctors at the Stanford Medical Hospital.


“In his lifetime, he published 50 papers in bionics, biophysics, chemistry, cognitive science, computational linguistics, electronics, human factors, information displays, materials science, optics, physics and telecommunications.”


Hewlett quotes from a recent letter Egon wrote to ‘My friends at HP,’ wherin he commented ‘I have not always seen eye to eye…with those management policies that in my view departed significantly from the spirit of what I understood to be the HP Way….’ And finishes with ‘It has been a privilege being part of our HP family. I am sure that many of you will try to ensure it remains as long as possible the special place it has been for 50 years.’’


10/25/91, Copy of a letter from Eugenie Prime to Joel Birnbaum, HP Lab Director. The letter initiates plans for a tribute to Egon Loebner.

12/12/91, Letter from Lorine Hall to Mollie Yoshshizumi, summarizing plans for the “book reception.” Copies of biographical articles about Egon are enclosed.

12/17/91, Copy of the invitation to join “HP Labs in celebrating the publication of The Selected Papers of Egon Loebner.”

12/20/91, Copy of a letter from Cheryl Ritchie to Frank Carrubba saying they are planning to publicize the letter Loebner wrote “to his friends” at HP. A copy of the full text of Egon’s letter is enclosed, along with a note from Dave Packard saying it should be printed in Measure.

Undated, Copy of a story of his release from Auschwitz, written by Egon Loebner.

12/17/91, Copy of a tribute given by HP Lab Director Frank Carrubba.

Undated, copy of an unsigned tribute

2/26/90, Copy of a tribute from “EGLY”

2/16/90, Copy of tribute from Paul Greene

8/15/48, Copy of a letter to Loebner from Albert Einstein apparently in response to a letter from Loebner discussing career alternatives

1989 – Hewlett Speeches

Box 3, Folder 52 – General Speeches


October 11, 1989 – “Random Thoughts on Creativity,” University of Bologna, Italy


10/11/89, Copy of typewritten text of speech


Hewlett starts with a preface like introduction to give the context of this speech for his audience in Italy. “Once every four years,” he says, “there is a meeting of the International Industrial Conference held in San Francisco. It is sponsored by the Conference Board and the Stanford Research Institute. Its attendees, about 500 in number, come from all over the world, drawn both from developed and newly emerging countries and represent the largest and best known organizations. Its most recent meeting was just completed in September of this year. The theme was ‘Carrying on International Business in a Global World.’ One of the principal subjects dealt with the increasingly complex nature of such businesses and the role of technology in competition.”


Hewlett wants to weave the subject of creativity into this context and says “Certainly creativity is a critical component of technology. It is particularly appropriate to speak about creativity when one remembers the great contributions made by Leonardo da Vinci, Galilei, Galvani and Marconi. I thought that it might be of value if I shared some views on the creative processes with you today.” And he says he asked Dr. Charles House, an R & D manager at HP, what creativity was. He says House, “with a twinkle in his eye,” replied ‘Creativity is what interferes with my established engineering program.’ And Hewlett acknowledges that “There is much truth in that statement.”


Hewlett gives another definition of creativity, this time from Thomas Edison: ‘There ain’t no rules around here. We’re trying to accomplish something.’


He says he gives these two comments “…because they say a great deal about the creative process. It works best when it is not too structured. But it must, in the long run, be tamed, harnessed and hitched to the wagon of man’s needs.”


Hewlett tells of a high level Commission, established by the President of the United States. “The charter of this Commission,” he says, “ was to understand the long-term competitiveness of the United States with emphasis on technology. One of the Commission’s recommendations was to ‘Create and apply new technology.’  “Technical innovation spurs new industries and revives mature ones. Technological advances lead to improved productivity, an essential ingredient for our standard of living.


“But technology,” Hewlett says, “is the child of creativity.” And he asks, “How can we stimulate greater creativity in our industrial technological society?”


Continuing his efforts to define creativity, he quotes the Nobel Prize Winner, Albert Szent-Gyorgyi, as saying, ‘Discovery consists of looking at the same thing as everyone else and thinking something different’. Hewlett calls this “…a good working definition.”


Another point Hewlett makes is that education is not a requirement for creative activity, and he gives an example of an engineer at HP who had just one year of college. “Despite [this fact] he was one of the most creative people I’ve known. You could present him with the most difficult problems and he’d come up with ingenious solutions. He had the ability to isolate the essence of the problem and attack it with vigor.”


“Psychologists can’t even agree on how to measure this characteristic, let alone predict who will display it. Establishing an environment that fosters creativity and observing who flourishes is probably the best way of finding this elusive characteristic.”


Hewlett distinguishes between two kinds of creativity, the first being “spontaneous, in which an individual sees a complete and elegant solution to an interesting problem.”  The second kind he sees he calls “creativity on demand, in which specific objectives are established and must be met, but with a great deal of flexibility in how the results are to he achieved.”


He says both types share many common traits. “Creative people have an abiding curiosity and an insatiable desire to learn how and why things work. They take nothing for granted. They are interested in things around them and tend to stow away bits and pieces of information in their minds for future use. And they have a great ability to mobilize their thinking and experiences for use in solving a new problem.”


Hewlett sees a “sub-class” of creative types – “persons who not only have the ability to see things around them, but also to note that which differs from the norm.”


He gives the example of Sir Arthur Fleming, who discovered Penicillin when he noted a “mold had landed on a culture dish with colonies of staphylococci,” and he saw that it killed the adjacent colonies.”


“Intellectual curiosity is a great source of creativity. An example of this is demonstrated by Nobel Prize winner in Physics, Luis Alvarez, a close friend of mine and for several years a member of the Board of Directors of our Company.” Hewlett goes on to tell how Dr. Alvarez, during a trip to Egypt, became interested in the fact that no burial chamber had been found in the Pyramid of Khephren. He decided he would try to find the answer to this problem. With some financial help from Stanford University he was able to use cosmic rays from the sun, as one would use X-rays, to determine that no burial chamber existed.”


Hewlett says he has been talking about creativity as it would apply to research-type situations, and says he would like to move on to the development phase, the
“Create on Demand” type of creativity. “Here,” he says, “creativity’s role is slightly different….There is now a clearly defined objective and the job is to find a way to meet that goal.”


He says much has been written about this type of creative process – “techniques to stimulate and enhance it. One book on the subject I greatly enjoyed was ‘Conceptual Blockbusting’ by James L. Adams. This book suggests that “we all suffer from mental blocks that stand in the way of solving the problem at hand. These might be emotional blocks such as fear of failure, frustration, or too much or too little motivation. They may be perceptual blocks such as using incorrect information or the wrong method, or not using all your senses. Quite often, they are cultural blocks which sometimes can be the hardest to overcome.”


Hewlett believes younger people have an advantage here because they have a “habit of always questioning past wisdom and authority.”


“Projects do not,” Hewlett says, “always progress at a steady, uniform rate. Sometimes progress is stymied by a very difficult problem. The problem might be overcome by a clear, technical breakthrough, but more often than not, it is by-passed with a compromise solution I like to call a ‘quick fix’. If there are too many of these ‘quick fixes’, you’ill probably wind up with a very cumbersome solution to the problem.”


Hewlett tells of a engineer named Harald Friis, who had retired from Bell Labs. Friis would visit HP once in a while and he liked to talk with the R&D engineers about their projects – particularly when they had reached a dead end in the development process.


“He could get them to step back and view their work as a whole. He would ask, ‘What are you really trying to do? Are you on the right track, but feel you have too many quick fixes, or, are you really on the wrong track and need to make a fresh start?’ Hewlett says “Harald was just wonderful in helping our engineers reach this critical decision. He had a way of making a person see things in perspective and the engineers just loved him.”


“There is a time and place for creativity, but in the developmental process, timing sometimes outweighs technical innovations. It all comes back to the question of how often you can change course and still make forward progress. It is simply a matter of judgment.”


Hewlett gives an example involving the development of HP’s first desktop calculator. “Integrated circuits were just being introduced and we had to decide whether to delay the entry of the product so that we might use integrated circuits or go ahead and introduce it with a primitive, but proven, read-only-memory device. We chose the latter. Timing was the dominant factor and not the ‘niceness’ of the solution.”


Hewlett says he wants to switch from talking about the creative process in the R&D phase, and “look at how creativity can help increase productivity and improve quality….We need the same creative effort in the production process that we now lavish on the development phase. We must start by having productivity and quality as objectives in the research and development process. Productivity must be designed into products – not added at a later date. Quality cannot be ‘inspected in’.”


Hewlett feels in many cases industries are not taking advantage of the technology already available which could be used to improve quality and the manufacturability of a product. He sees universities as having a responsibility in this area. “…our universities …need to improve a theoretical base for quality control and efficiency in the manufacturing process.”


“I hope I’ve made it clear that creativity will play a vital and critical role in our increasingly high technology society. Industry is going to have to make some drastic changes in how it views the importance of the research and development program and its role in improving productivity.


“Changes are never easy to make. There is comfort and safety in tradition, but change must come, no matter how painful or expensive it may be.”


Hewlett says change need not present a “bleak” picture for the technically trained manager. “Change opens cracks in the monolithic structures. It presents a period of great opportunity, for this is the time when the best and the most creative minds will be sought out and placed in positions of key responsibility.


“In the high technology field, top leadership is always looking for good minds, high energy levels and a willingness to accept responsibility. In fact, many companies are so committed to creativity that they may still emphasize the recruitment of engineering graduates, even though at the time a general hiring freeze may be in effect for the rest of the company.


“It may turn out that the next few years will be one of unprecedented opportunity for the scientifically trained and creative mind and that their involvement will benefit industry with sharp increases in quality and efficiency in the manufacturing of its products.


10/11/89, Copy of Italian translation of speech

10/11/89, Typewritten copy of an earlier draft of speech, with handwritten changes by Hewlett

10/11/89, Copy of an earlier draft of speech, handwritten by Hewlett

5/22/89, Copy of a letter to Hewlett, written in Italian, from Fabio Roversi-Monaco, director of Education, University of Bologna. A copy of the translation is also supplied. The letter tells Hewlett that  the University wishes to confer upon him an Honorary Doctorate in Electronic Engineering.

6/1/89, Copy of  letter from Hewlett to Professor Fabio Roversi-Monaco saying he will be in Europe in October and could arrange to be in Bologna at their convenience.

8/23/89, Copy of a letter to Hewlett from Alfredo Scarfone of HP in Italy giving a draft of the ceremony in Bologna.

11/22/89, Copy of an HP memo from Carol Parcels to Mollie Yoshizumi [Hewlett’s Secretary] returning a copy of the speech

1988 – Hewlett Speeches

Box 3, Folder 50 – General Speeches


April 20, 1988 – Wells Fargo Bank International Advisory Council, San Francisco, CA


4/20/88, Typewritten copy of speech. It is very much the same as that given on this subject November 1, 1993, and is not repeated here.


4/20/88, Copies of two earlier drafts of speech, one with handwritten notations by Hewlett which were incorporated in the final text.

4/15/88, Typewritten note with information from Stanford engineering library concerning Leonard Fuller of Federal, and Herdun Pratt of Mackay. It says the two companies merged in 1928 with the International Telephone and Telegraph Company.



Box 3, Folder 51 – General Speeches


August 17, 1988 – John May Memorial, San Francisco, CA


8/17/88, Copy of typewritten text of speech


Hewlett says he first learned of John May via his own mother who had gone to a Century Club luncheon where May spoke. Mrs. Hewlett was very impressed by May and the community foundation principle he presented. Some years later Hewlett was asked to join the San Francisco Foundation as a member of the Distribution Committee. John May was the Executive Director of the Foundation.


Hewlett says he served in that capacity from 1962 to 1970, and that “It was one of the experiences I cherished the most. Learning how to give away money is not easy, but John was a good teacher.”


Hewlett tells how, in the mid-60s he and his wife, Flora, set up a family foundation. “Initially,” he says, “it was a very small operation that we operated out of our back pocket.” When May retired from the San Francisco Foundation in 1973, they asked him to become the first director of their family foundation. He served in that capacity for several years and Hewlett describes how “The structure he set up, and the philosophical approach that he established during the period that he was director was exactly what we needed and are still follow[ing] today.”


Hewlett describes John May’s work with the San Francisco Foundation in some detail, telling how his work there “was a model that is now followed in a number of  [communities around the Bay Area.]”


Hewlett closes saying “If John is in heaven and looking down, as I know he is, he must derive great satisfaction by what he sees. One form of immorality comes from the fact that you are remembered in the hearts and minds of men; that the world is a better place for you having lived. John certainly meets these conditions. Unfortunately, too few of the beneficiaries of John’s genius ever knew of the real benefactors, but those of us here today do know and we say, ‘Thank you, John May.’”


7/14/88, Typewritten paper, probably prepared by Mollie Yoshizumi, Hewlett’s secretary, containing factual data about John May.

7/14/88, Copy of a letter to John May’s widow, Jean May, from Hewlett saying he had been away for two weeks and had learned of John’s death upon his return. He says “John was a wonderful person and the contributions he made to the Foundation World were extraordinary. He changed the concept of a Community Foundation. If that was not enough, he set the William and flora Hewlett foundation on  course that it still basically follows today.”

8/8/88, Handwritten note to Hewlett from Jean May thanking him for his “kind and sympathetic words,”

8/12/88, Copy of a FAX from Tom Silk, attorney, to Mollie Yoshizumi, sending various obituaries that had been printed about John May. He mentions more material may arrive from Henry May.

8//15/88, Copy of a note from Henry May [brother] to Tom Silk transmitting more biographical information.

11/4/88, Letter to Mr. and Mrs. Hewlett from Robert M. Fisher sending the 1988 Annual report of the San Francisco Foundation.

1987 – Hewlett Speeches

Box 3, Folder 49 and 49A– General Speeches

4/2/87, Memo from Doug Kundrat to Mollie Yoshizumi thanking her for facilitating Hewlett’s approval for IBM to reprint an excerpt of his MIT address and enclosing letters he had written to IBM transmitting the approval.

4/22/87, Memo from Doug Kundrat to Mollie Yoshizumi sending a copy of IBM’s publication :Creativity” containing the excerpted address

8/27/87, Memo from Doug Kundrat to Mollie Yoshizumi enclosing another IBM publication containing the excerpted MIT address, this one named “Innovations”

Undated, Copy of an article titled “Chase Chance and Creativity, by James H. Austin

Undated, copies of some pages from an article which tells how Edwin came to invent the Polaroid camera

Undated, Copy of the cover of a booklet titled Conceptual Blockbusting by James L. Adams

1986 – Hewlett Speeches

Box 3, Folder 49 and 49A– General Speeches


June 2, 1986 – “Random Thoughts on Creativity,” MIT, Cambridge, MA


6/2/86, Copy of typewritten text of speech, with some handwritten notations by Hewlett


This speech is almost identical to that given on October 11, 1989 at the University of Bologna, Italy and so is not repeated here.


Papers included in the folder – note a second folder needed


6/2/86,  Typewritten and handwritten  drafts of speech

2/7/86 to 5/12/86, Various Notes on travel arrangements and ceremony logistics, apparently to Hewlett from his secretary, Mollie Yoshizumi.

2/12/86, Photocopy of page from MIT publication, “Tech Talk,” with article telling of Hewlett’s planned attendance and address at the forthcoming commencement

5/14/86, List of corporate members and spouses attending luncheon

6/2/86, Copy of typewritten sheet listing program schedule for the ceremony

6/2/86, Typewritten list of center stage principals

1/14/86, Letter to  Hewlett from Paul E. Gray, President, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, saying “A student group has overwhelmingly recommended you as this year’s Commencement Exercises,” and he invites Hewlett to be the Guest of Honor at their commencement

1/28/86, Copy of a letter to President Gray from Hewlett accepting the invitation – and noting the date will mark 50 years since his own graduation from MIT [Master of Engineering]. He also asks if Gray could let him know who the commencement speaker was 50 years ago.

2/6/86, Letter to Hewlett from Paul Gray, saying he is delighted Hewlett will be the 120th Commencement speaker. He also advises that a Newton Diehl Baker, former Secretary of War, was the Commencement speaker in 1936.

2/11/86, Letter to Hewlett from Timothy McConnell, a student and President of the Gamma Pi chapter of Kappa Sigma, inviting him to dinner at their House during his trip.

3/4/86, Copy of a letter from Hewlett to Timothy McConnell saying the schedule for the Commencement activities has not yet been finished, and he will let them know whether he is able to accept their invitation at a later date – looks tight, however, he adds

5/23/86, Copy of a letter from Hewlett to Timothy McConnell explaining that, due to the brief trip schedule, he will not be able to accept their invitation to dinner.

2/18/86, Letter to Hewlett from Harold E. Edgerton, retired from MIT, congratulating him on being the Commencement speaker, and saying that he is sending a copy of a book entitled  “Moments of Vision.”

2/24/86, Copy of a letter to Edgerton from Hewlett thanking him for his letter.

2/22/86, Letter to Hewlett from, Dave Lyons, a student at MIT, saying he has lost the manual for his HP 15-C and wonders if Hewlett could send him a replacement.

3/6/86, Copy of a letter to Lyons from Mollie Yoshizumi, Secretary to Hewlett, telling him the phone number which he can call to obtain the manual – for $10.00.

2/18/86, Letter to Hewlett from Dr. Julius A. Stratton, [former professor at MIT?], saying it “has been a long time since that were together at MIT. He also says he will never forget Hewlett’s “kindness and generosity is establishing the Stratton Professorship, which has meant so much to me.”

3/27/86, Copy of a letter to Dr. Stratton from Hewlett saying he hopes to be able to visit during his trip.



4/28/86, Copy of a letter to Hewlett from Dr. David. S. Saxon, Chairman of  the MIT Corporation, inviting him, and guests, to a luncheon at his apartment on campus after the Commencement

5/9/86, Copies of notes from Mollie Yoshizumi, Hewlett’s Secretary, to members of his family accompanying him on the trip, sending them a copy of Dr. Saxon’s invitation

5/14/86, Copy of a letter from Hewlett to Dr. Saxon accepting the luncheon invitation and listing the members of his family who will attend: son and daughter-in-law, Walter and Esther Hewlett; daughter and son-in-law, Eleanor and Jean-Paul Gimon, and grandson, Eric Gimon.

5/13/86, Copy of a note to Hewlett from Karen Gervais, HP Press Relations, saying she would like to offer  his speech on creativity at MIT to either the New York Times or the Wall Street Journal, and asking if this meets with his approval. A  handwritten note from him at the bottom of the letter says “wait and see” [See also note dated 11/25/86 below]

5/15/86, Letter to Mollie Yoshizumi from Mary Morrissey, Executive Officer for the Commencement, listing all arrangements for local transportation upon arrival and for the following day.

5/22/86, Copy of a letter to Dr. David Saxon, from Hewlett, saying he would like to add another person as a guest for the luncheon after the Commencement – Loret Ruppe, a cousin of Mrs. Hewlett, and head of the Peace Corps.

5/29/86, Copy of  a letter from Hewlett to Dr. Roger Heyns, President, The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, sending him a copy of his MIT speech and thanking him for his help.

5/26/86, Letter to Hewlett from Vivienne Lee, graduating class President, telling him how much she enjoyed and benefited from her experience as a SED student at HP the previous summer, and saying she looks forward to meeting him at the commencement.

5/30/86, Copy of a letter from Hewlett to Vivienne Lee saying “it was such a pleasure to read her heartwarming letter,” and adds that he looks forward to meeting her.

5/30/86, Notes to his children, Bill, Mary, and Jim, sending copies of his speech with the note: “I thought you might be interested.”

6/2/86, Copy of a note from Mollie Yoshizumi to Dr. Luis Alvarez, sending him the copy of Hewlett’s speech as requested.

6/5/86, Copies of letters from Hewlett to the following people sending each of them a copy of his commencement address:

Robert J. Glaser, M.D.

Don Hammond, HP, Bristol

Chuck House, HP, Palo Alto

Mrs. Philip Ruppe, Washington  D.C.

Dr. Jerome B. Wiesner, MIT

6/4/86, Letter to Hewlett from Paul E. Gray, MIT President, thanking him for participating in their Commencement Exercises

6/18/86, Letter to Hewlett from David S, Saxon, thanking him for participating in the MIT commencement



6/12/86, Letter to Hewlett from Robert C. Di Iorio, Associate Director of MIT’s News Office, sending him a copy of their news release about the Commencement Exercise,  including quotes from his address.

6/26/86, Copy of a letter from Hewlett to Robert Di Iorio thanking him for his letter.

5/21/86, Letter to Hewlett from Professor Lawrence Susskind, Executive director, Program on Negotiation, Harvard Law School, commenting on the support given their program by the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, and inviting him to visit during his trip.

6/26/86, Copy of a letter to Professor Susskind from Hewlett saying he got his letter too late to respond and is sorry they could not meet, maybe another time.

6/26/86, Letter to Hewlett from David R. Lampe, Editor, The MIT Report saying they would like to include an article based on his speech at the Commencement in their publication, and he encloses a draft of a suggested article.

7/17/86, Copy of a letter from Hewlett to David Lampe approving the draft for publication.



See second folder on this speech for more material, mostly correspondence, with related publications.

6/2/86, Printed program for the entire Commencement Exercise

6/4/86, Issue of MIT publication, Tech Talk, containing the text of Hewlett’s commencement address

1/31/86, Handwritten note from Jean Burke, Measure Managing Editor, to Hewlett’s Secretary Mollie Yoshizumi, enclosing a transcript of her interview with Hewlett on the subject of creativity. Also attached is an issue of Measure which contains an article on the subject

11/10/86, Clipping from the Singapore newspaper, The Business Times, containing an article on creativity based on Jean Burke’s article in Measure

5/?/86, Handwritten note to Hewlett from Luis Alvarez attaching a copy of a talk given by Walter Alvarez [his son] on the subject of iridium and stellar impacts on the earth

5/19/86, Note to Hewlett from Steve Fox, HP Patent Law Department, attaching a copy of an article describing how Einstein got the idea for his Theory of Relativity, [in a dream], and how Niels Bohr formulated Quantum Mechanics.

5/19/86, Handwritten note to Hewlett from Steve Fox, Patent Law Dept. attaching an article on counterfeiting which quotes John Young, HP president

7/3/86, Letter to Hewlett from Jerome B. Wiesner, thanking him for the copy of his address, and enclosing a copy of one he plans to give in October titled “Creating with Computing”

8-9/86, Issue of the MIT publication, TechnologyReview containing excerpts from Hewlett’s commencement address

11/25/86, Memo to Hewlett from Karen Gervais, HP Public Relations, enclosing her edited version of his MIT commencement address, and asking if it meets with his approval, adding that she wants to approach either the Wall Street Journal, or the Christian Science Monitor to get it printed.

12/17/86, Memo to Hewlett from Karen Gervais saying she has “tweaked” the third paragraph as he suggested, plus the last three paragraphs which she thought needed some more work, and she again asks his approval

11/14/86, Note to Hewlett probably from Secretary Mollie Yoshizumi, saying Doug Kundrat of the HP Patent Legal Department called to say that IBM is interested in reprinting the excerpt from his MIT speech [MIT TechnologyReview – see listing dated August/September above] in their publication “Creativity.” Hewlett’s handwritten word “OK” is written on the page



1985 – Hewlett Speeches

Box 3, Folder 46 – General Speeches


March 18, 1985 – Symposium on Economics and Technology, Stanford, CA


3/18/85, Typewritten text of Hewlett’s comments


Hewlett says “Someone upstairs must be chuckling over the fact that he is involved in a seminar on Engineering Economics”  – since a course on that very subject was the only course he failed while at Stanford.”


Hewlett says he senses there is “a gap between the grass-root technical innovation and the very large corporations who are users of technical innovation. How do we move from the individual entrepreneur…to very large technically innovative companies…?”


He goes back some 25 years to the ‘$10 Million Syndrome.’ “This reference.” he says, “was based on the observation that many technically oriented companies reaching about that size ran into serious problems. These problems were sufficiently severe that management could not cope with them, and the company either went out of business or was acquired by a larger organization.”


Hewlett describes three problems which tended to cause such a crises. The first related to management itself. “Typically, such organizations were started by engineers or scientists whose primary skills were in technical fields. They took the attitude that management will take care of itself. Unfortunately, it doesn’t and suddenly they would wake up to the fact that the organization they had created was not capable of meeting the challenges of the future.”


“The second problem concerned financing the growth. “The financial problems of a small company are very different from that of a large one. Initial capital is often available from the individuals themselves or from associates or friends, and certainly in small amounts from banks. However, these funds are quickly swallowed up in the basic working capital needs of a growing company. It is therefore essential that stress be put on the principle of financing growth from earnings.”


And the third problem concerns product line depth. “A new innovative product has a logical life. A company having demonstrated the viability of such a new concept soon meets competition from other companies attempting to exploit such ideas, or as it often happens, newer technologies invalidate earlier inventions. It is essential, then, that if a company is to survive, its product line must be expanded and strengthened. This speaks to continuing research and development efforts which, again, needs to be financed.”


Hewlett feels the only difference 25 years has made is a matter of size – the problems remain today. He sees all of these problems as a matter of economics – “for technically innovative companies, large and small, are affected equally by the economic climate in which they exist. A rudimentary knowledge of economics is really essential to direct the program of a modern corporation”



Box 3, Folder 47 – General Speeches


April 11-12, 1985, – “My Discussions with the Computer,” HP Conference on User Interfaces, San Francisco, CA


4/11-12/85, Copy of typewritten text of talk


In this talk Hewlett quite frankly admits that he is a novice in working directly with computers, and he tells of his frustrations in trying to follow user instruction manuals. One paragraph in particular tells it all:


“It was not until we began to make general purpose computers that my frustration reached a boiling point. I used a new generation of computer whose name I shall not use to protect the guilty. I spent two full days having to learn how to load programs by reading the instruction book from cover to cover several times. In the end I simply threw in the sponge and called for help. The only stipulation was that each step in the process was to be identified by a paragraph number in the instruction book. I can assure you that this turned out to be impossible.”


Hewlett understandably concludes  that “Proper instructions on how to use a computer is just as important as the design of the computer. And I can assure you, that the team that designs a computer is not the team that should write the instruction book. The writing of a good instruction manual is and should be a highly professional matter. To turn it over to the designer can be a disaster, for he simply cannot put himself on the same level as the average user. He inherently assumes a higher level of knowledge than the customer is apt to have. Skills for writing instruction manuals are related to such professional fields as communications, education or psychology, all having something to contribute. In fact, instruction manual writing should really be a field by itself.”


6/2/86, Memo from Brian Egan of HP to Hewlett asking if he could get a copy of the speech made by Hewlett at the User Interface Conference in San Francisco in 1985.

6/30/86, Note from Mollie Yoshizumi, Hewlett’s Secretary, to Brian Egan, sending the requested copy.

7/3/86, Note from Egan to Mollie Yoshizumi thanking her for the copy.



Box 3, Folder 48 – General Speeches


November 16, 1985 – Commencement Exercises, Rand Graduate Institute, Santa Monica, CA


11/16/85, Copy of Hewlett’s comments as printed in a booklet containing other speeches

These are some brief comments made by Hewlett on receiving the honorary degree of Doctor of Public Policy.


Hewlett makes a very brief statement. He says he is not sure what he has contributed to Rand, but he is sure Rand has contributed a lot to him. “…it introduced me to many other operations I would never have gotten into except for my experience here at Rand…. I’m very, very  much indebted to my experience here at Rand. I consider it a great honor to receive this degree. Thank you very much.”