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HP reportedly cuts four R&D projects

Posted: 25 Jul 2005 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:graphical user interfaces? modern programming languages?

The massive restructuring that is slashing 14,500 jobs at Hewlett-Packard has also cut four major research projects at the company, according to an Associated Press report.

The report quoted the San Jose Mercury News, which obtained an internal e-mail sent to employees by HP Labs director Dick Lampman.

According to the report, about 10 percent, or 70 of HP Labs' 700 employees worldwide are slated to receive layoff notices, though some may find jobs elsewhere in the company.

Among the discontinued projects is Kay's Advanced Software Research team, headed by HP technologist Alan Kay, best known for his work in graphical user interfaces while working at Xerox's research lab in the 1970s. Kay also pioneered modern programming languages.

Kay, who joined HP as a senior fellow in 2002, is reportedly leaving the company and did not return requests for comment.

The other cut projects include HP's Cambridge Research Lab, which studied health-related technology in Cambridge, Mass.; the Consumer Applications and Systems Laboratory; and the Emerging Technologies Laboratory. With the exception of the Cambridge lab, all the cut projects were based in Palo Alto.

A company spokesman was quoted as saying HP would refocus research and development on areas where it can have the greatest medium to long-term impact.

Projects reportedly expected to survive the cuts include nanotechnology and quantum computing. H-P will also reportedly continue to study enterprise computing technologies, imaging and printing, and information technology services.

In announcing the job cuts Tuesday, Hewlett-Packard said it would save $1.9 billion annually, streamline its operations, and improve business performance.

- EE Times

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