Mr. Richard J. Friedrich

Mr. Richard J. Friedrich

Board Chair

Vatican Observatory Foundation


Systems Software for The Machine


Rich Friedrich was born in a tiny town in southern Illinois and grew up in the St Louis metro area; he is a lifelong member of Cardinal Nation! A graduate of the McCormick School of Engineering at Northwestern University, he also pursued graduate studies in Continental Philosophy at San Jose State University.

A seasoned senior technical leader, strategist and architect with extensive experience in creating and delivering innovative information technology products and services to leading edge customers, his technical areas of expertise include high performance computing (HPC), high performance data analytics (HPDA), machine learning / artificial intelligence (ML/AI), and cyber security. Mr. Friedrich spent three decades in Silicon Valley where he and his teams developed innovative Information Technology products for client-server computing, distributed computing, and cloud computing.

For example, with his senior technical staff, developed the idea of Planetary Scale Computing in the late 1990s based on the rise of internet computing, internet scale data centers and HPC. This vision culminated in the creation of automated data center operations and formed the basis for the first commercial cloud offering: the geographically remote 1000 node cluster Utility Rendering Service co-developed with DreamWorks Animation who used it to process 10 million hours of rendering during the creation of the award winning animated movie Shrek 2 in 2004.

Mr. Friedrich has published extensively – his top five technical publications having been cited more than 1500 times – and he is a co-inventor on fifteen patents. He has also published in continental philosophy. He has presented two dozen keynotes around the globe. Mr. Friedrich is a trusted technical advisor and has briefed high tech CEOs, CIOs and CTOs across the Global 1000. He currently resides in Washington, DC where he works to bring Silicon Valley style innovation to the service of the US Government.

Official Calendar

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