By Ben Rand, Global Communications manager for Xerox

Chester Carlson’s vision continues to influence the Xerox of today, as we help our clients and partners redefine how work gets done.

Osgood & Printer

Charles Osgood, photo courtesy of CBS News. Learn more about the invention and development of xerography. Here, you will find links to images and a video of a 1966 interview with Chester Carlson.

Earlier this week in London, to an audience of executives and thought leaders gathered to discuss business transformation, Xerox chairman and CEO Ursula M. Burns made the connection clear.

Chester’s breakthrough helped transform a critical business process – information sharing – “to meet the demands of the 20th century,” she said.

And today, Ursula observed:

“Businesses and governments face a growing range of operational processes begging for reinvention.  And sometimes, they are looking to partners to operate these processes on their behalf.  That same mission, to apply technology and innovation to solve the information jams between people, is now being applied to address traffic jams, congested call centers and complicated government benefit programs.

“At Xerox, we combine our expertise in very specific work-domains – like information and data, customer care and human resources, to name a few – and marry it with our innovative history in computing, imaging, process engineering and human-centric design.”

Chester saw things differently. He did not draw conclusions of the whole based upon a single part. This characteristic served him well during the years following the successful experiment that produced the world’s first xerographic copy on October 22, 1938.

“… great rewards come to those who see needs that have not been clearly identified by others, and who have the innovating capacity to devise products and services which fill these needs.” – Joe Wilson, former CEO of Xerox, reflecting on Chester Carlson’s contributions.

Just like Chester did, Xerox today is designing solutions that address large-scale real-world problems, and making lives better – one copy, one train ticket, one mortgage or one health care premium at a time.

Happy birthday, Chet. From me and about 140,000 of your closest friends at Xerox.

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