Henry Thompson

Henry Thompson


Personal profile

Research Interests

Markup languages (XML, SGML) and architectures (Standoff markup, Schema languages, pipelines); Web Architecture; Philosophy of the Web.


1980PhD in Linguistics, University of California, Berkeley
1977MA in Linguistics, University of California, Berkeley
1974MSc in Computer Science, University of California, Berkeley
1972BA in Computer Science, University of California, Berkeley


Henry S. Thompson divides his time between the School of Informatics at the School of Informatics at the University of Edinburgh, where he is Professor of Web Informatics, based in the Institute for Language, Cognition and Computation, and independent consulting on XML- and web-related business strategy.

He received his Ph.D. in Linguistics from the University of California at Berkeley in 1980.  His university education was divided between Linguistics and Computer Science, in which he holds an M.Sc.  While still at Berkeley he was affiliated with the Natural Language Research Group at the Xerox Palo Alto Research Center, where he participated in the GUS and KRL projects.  His research interests have ranged widely, including natural language parsing, speech recognition, machine translation evaluation, modelling human lexical access mechanisms, the fine structure of human-human dialogue, language resource creation and architectures for linguistic annotation.  His current research is focussed on the semantics of markup, XML pipelines and more generally understanding and articulating the architectures of the Web.

He was a member of the SGML Working Group of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) which designed XML, a major contributor to the core concepts of XSLT and W3C XML Schema and is currently a member of the XML Core and XML Processing Model Working Groups of the W3C.  He was elected five times to the W3C TAG (Technical Architecture Group), from which he recently stepped down.  He was lead editor of the Structures part of the XML Schema W3C Recommendation, for which he co-wrote the first publicly available implementation, XSV.  From 2002 through 2010 he was a member of the technical staff of the World Wide Web Consortium, where he worked in the XML Activity.  He has presented many lectures, papers and tutorials on SGML, DSSSL, XML, XSLT, XML Schema, XML Pipelines and Web Architecture in both industrial and public settings over the last sixteen years.


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