All Press Releases for January 10, 2017

The Inventor of Email Takes a Glimpse into the Future; He Doesn't Like What He Sees: The Future of Email

New book by world-renowned systems scientist, inventor, and entrepreneur Dr. V. A. Shiva Ayyadurai, who created a technology that's changed the world

    CAMBRIDGE, MA, January 10, 2017 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Every day 205 billion emails zip their way around the Internet. As the most powerful business communication tool ever developed, email has revolutionized our lives. But according to Dr. V. A. Shiva Ayyadurai, it also has a dark side, as he makes frighteningly clear in his newest book, The Future of Email: What We Must Do to Protect Ourselves (General Interactive, paper, $19.95). Shiva ought to know. He invented email in the first place.

"Human societies have always been organized into elites and everybody else," says Shiva, a systems scientist with four degrees from MIT. "In a future sliding toward artificial intelligence and Big Data, those lines will increasingly be drawn between elites whose electronic communications remain private and everybody else." It doesn't take Hillary's emails to know it's already happening. In The Future of Email Dr. Shiva lays out a compelling game plan for what can be done to prevent the inexorable slide toward a future in which privacy is redefined downward and business and government direct more and more of our lives.

Shiva has started several multimillion-dollar technology companies including EchoMail, which he launched after winning a White House contest to automatically sort President Clinton's email. Today, the man who invented email is revolutionizing medicine, using the same Systems Thinking principles to eliminate animal testing by mathematically modeling things as tiny as the processes that go on in a cell.

"Trust me," he says from his office in Cambridge, not far from MIT. "Email is here to stay for a long time. The only question is will its immense power be applied for everyone's advantage in a democratic setting, or will that power be used for something less positive?"

Dr. Shiva has a right to be proud in addition to worried. Creating the architecture and 50,000 lines of code for one of the world's most prolific communication tools would be impressive at any age. Shiva did it at 14. It happened in Newark, NJ at a small medical college where he worked after being selected to attend a special computer science program at NYU. By the time he was accepted into MIT at 16, he was being welcomed by the august institution as an accomplished innovator.

If V. A. Shiva created a technology that's changing the world, he also created a battle with one of the world's biggest defense contractors for bragging rights to the technology.

That would be Raytheon, whose Ray Tomlinson made minor modifications to an already existing software program to pass text from one computer to another using the @ symbol. Shiva finds amusement in Raytheon's equating the "@" symbol, and at best simple text messaging with the more structurally complicated architecture of email that he created to make life easier for the secretaries at the medical college, when most kids his age were boogying to Saturday Night Fever. The proof--including copyrights, thousands of lines of computer code, awards, and the entire history of the invention of email--is all on a website, It's a pretty convincing case.

Email authorship aside, Shiva, who consulted at the White House, U.S. Senate, Nike, and for the largest Global 2000 companies on electronic communication, continues to be sought after for his perspective and advice, recently commenting for the New York Times, who called on the "email pioneer" about another of Clinton's troubles with the technology he created, and earlier for the Wall Street Journal, which commissioned him as the inventor of email for their 125th anniversary issue on The Future of Email.

"This kind of stuff is just beginning," he says with a rueful smile. "You haven't seen anything yet."

Dr. V. A. Shiva Ayyadurai, a world-renowned systems scientist, inventor and entrepreneur, holds four degrees from MIT. He is a Fulbright Scholar, Lemelson-MIT Awards Finalist, India's First Outstanding Scientist and Technologist of Indian Origin, Westinghouse Science Talent Honors Award recipient, and a nominee for the U.S. National Medal of Technology and Innovation.

In 1978, after completing a special program in computer science at the Courant Institute of Mathematical Science at NYU, the precocious 14-year-old, was recruited by the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ) as a Research Fellow, where he invented email when he developed the first electronic replica of the entire interoffice mail system (inbox, outbox, folders, address book, attachments, etc.), named it "email," and received the first U.S. Copyright for "Email," at a time when Copyright was the only mechanism to protect software inventions.

In 2003, Shiva returned to MIT to complete his doctoral work in systems biology within the Department of Biological Engineering, where he developed CytoSolve, a scalable computational platform for modeling the cell. While at MIT, he also developed a pioneering new course called Systems Visualization, which integrates systems theory, narrative story-telling, metaphor, and data visualization to provide visualization of complex systems.

Dr. Shiva serves as Chairman and CEO of CytoSolve, Inc. as well as Founder and Member of the Board of the International Center for Integrative Systems (ICIS), a nonprofit research and education foundation, located in Cambridge, MA.

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Media contact: Victor Gulotta
Gulotta Communications, Inc.

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