A Summary of George Gerpheide’s Journey of Creativity

A Summary of George Gerpheide’s Journey of Creativity



A Summary of George Gerpheide’s Journey of Creativity

George Gerpheide was a student at the Kalamazoo Central High School where he was a senior in the computer programming class in 1971. He was one of the best students in the class (Hice, 2007). George and the writer, Mr. Hice, were friends linked together by their I.Q. levels. The first creative work by George was a computer he made from home-made parts together with John, his brother.

The high grades that George had attained in his computer science education enabled him to be accepted at the MIT institution. MIT was generally known for its excellence, the bright students involved with it and the intellectual pranks they carried out. At a 400-person examination in physics, he scooped the best grade. This explained how George performed well in his classes. He had managed to stack his semesters with lectures only to realize later that he would graduate early by a semester. Over the free semester, he went sky diving with his friends in Utah. His love for the Utah slopes was great until his parents feared that he would not continue with his education.

            The great mind behind the touch pad technology can be attributed to Gerpheide. George wondered if he could come up with a pad that could sense the finger using magnetic fields. In pursuit of his imagination, he came up with the first capacitive touch pad while working at the Apple Company. After undergoing many mechanical challenges, he finally made a breakthrough to the theoretical stage with 19 prototypes (Hice, 2007 pg. 19). The touch pad was then declared one of the best products in 1994 since at the time no other breakthrough had been achieved of such magnitude. Other achievements to his name include the development of the Par-T-Golf, the control algorithms and being a professor in electrical engineering at Utah.


Hice, A. (2007, November). A Wild Ride with George Gerpheid. ScientificComputing.com, pg. 18-22.

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