12 Impressive People Named Alan

Alan Shepard stampThe baby name Alan is of uncertain derivation, but there are several theories about where it might come from. One theory is that it’s based on a Gaelic word meaning “rock.” Another is that it’s based on an Old Welsh word meaning “deer.”

Here are a dozen impressive people named Alan:

  1. Alan D. Blumlein (1903-1942), English electronics engineer. Invented stereophonic sound (“stereo”) in 1931.
  2. Alan Cooper (1952-), American software designer and programmer. Developed the visual programming language used to create Visual Basic.
  3. Alan H. Cottrell (1919-2012), British metallurgist.
  4. Alan Emtage (1964-), Barbadian computer scientist. Created the first search engine, Archie (short for “archive”), in 1989.
  5. Alan J. Heeger (1936-) American chemist. Co-discovered conductive polymers (plastics that conduct electricity) in 1977. [See Alan MacDiarmid]
  6. Alan L. Hodgkin (1914-1998), British biophysicist and physiologist.
  7. Alan Kay (1940-), American computer scientist.
  8. Alan J. Perlis (1922-1990), American computer scientist.
  9. Alan G. MacDiarmid (1927-2007) New Zealand-born American chemist. Co-discovered conductive polymers in 1977. [See Alan Heeger]
  10. Alan B. Shepard (1923-1998), American astronaut. First American astronaut, and second human being, to travel into space (1961).
  11. Alan Shugart (1930-2006), American engineer and entrepreneur.
  12. Alan M. Turing (1912-1954), British mathematician and logician. Invented the hypothetical Turing machine, the basis for today’s digital computers, in 1936.

Do you know of any other equally cool people named Alan?

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