• Dan Bricklin
  • CTO Alpha Software
  • Twitter

an Bricklin, CTO, Alpha Software

Dan Bricklin contributes to product and technology at Alpha Software. Dan has a storied history in the software industry and is known as the father of the electronic spreadsheet. With Bob Frankston, he co-founded Software Arts, developer of VisiCalc, the spreadsheet program that helped launch the personal computing industry. His most recent product is Note Taker HD, a popular iPad notetaking app he wrote in Objective-C for iOS that is consistently ranked a top 50 Apple Store app. Dan also developed in JavaScript the full-featured SocialCalc spreadsheet program for Socialtext and the One Laptop Per Child's XO computer. He also is known for the award-winning Dan Bricklin's Demo Program for the IBM PC. Bricklin is a Fellow of both the Association for Computing Machinery and the Computer History Museum, and received the IEEE Computer Society Computer Entrepreneur Award for pioneering the development and commercialization of the spreadsheet. He is a founding trustee of the Massachusetts Technology Leadership Council. Dan holds a degree in Electrical Engineering from MIT and an MBA from Harvard.


  • Dealing with Disconnected and Offline for Mobile Applications
  • Time: TBD | Room:
This presentation is based on a widely read essay on offline published this summer by award-winning developer and CTO Dan Bricklin. This presentation will outline the key issues relating to mobile business apps and the needs of offline operation. Bricklin will explain the evolution of mobile use in business and the growing importance of supporting disconnected operation. He will discuss some of the ways in which this is different than the modes of operation most developers are used to and how needing to support offline may be slowing the exploitation of mobile by businesses. The bulk of the presentation focuses on some of the different issues that must be dealt with when creating an offline-capable app, including: maintaining the data on the device until a connection is reestablished, the issue of getting mobile transactions back to the corporate database, and database integrity and the difficulty of dealing with error conditions. During the presentation, Bricklin will outline two different techniques and explore their strengths and weaknesses. While there is no single, simple answer, but understanding available approaches will help developers evaluate potential designs and usability/user experience needs.