Adam Osborne, whose successes and failures pioneering the first portable computer became one of Silicon Valley's great cautionary tales, is dead at 64 after a long illness.
Osborne, a British immigrant and long-time resident of Berkeley, California, died in his sleep in Kodiakanal, a village in southern India last Tuesday, his sister, Katya Douglas, told Reuters on Monday.
His death ended a decade-long battle with an organic brain disorder that caused him to suffer an endless series of mini-strokes.
The popularity of the 23-pound luggable computer he introduced in 1981 made his start-up, Osborne Computer Corp., the fastest-growing company up to that time, thanks in part to his willingness to cut the cost of computers nearly in half compared with rivals such as first-to-market Apple Computer.
But the rigors of "hypergrowth" -- a term coined to describe his company's rise -- ended in an even quicker plunge into bankruptcy two years later, making Osborne's legacy a textbook study of the perils of undisciplined growth.