MIT beats the rush, names Dropbox CEO as 2013 commencement speaker

Colleges and universities typically don't announce commencement speakers until the spring, but the Massachusetts Institute of Technology got a jump on things this week by announcing that Dropbox CEO and 2005 MIT grad Drew Houston would be doing the honors in 2013.

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Houston, who co-founded and now leads the popular Web-based file transfer service, will be delivering his address at MIT's 147th commencement exercises on Friday, June 7.

He'll have a tough act to follow: Triple MIT alum Salman Khan of Khan Academy online education website fame delivered an excellent speech this past spring. (He also delivered one at Rice University in Houston.)

MIT President Rafael Reif said in a statement about the 2013 speaker: "Drew Houston has made cloud computing available to people everywhere. His experience offers a powerful example of how a young MIT graduate can give the world something truly useful."

Houston holds an BS in computer science and engineering from MIT. He began working on what would become Dropbox in2007 with Arash Ferdowsi, then an MIT undergraduate. According to MIT, Houston conceived of Dropbox on a bus trip from Boston to New York when his hopes of finishing some work during the long ride were dashed when he realized he had forgotten his USB drive at home.

Among this year's techiest commencement speakers: Google Chair Eric Schmidt, Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak and LinkedIn founder Reid Hoffman.

Bob Brown tracks network research in his Alpha Doggs blog and Facebook page, as well on Twitter and Google +. 

Read more about data center in Network World's Data Center section.

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Tags Dropbox MITKhan AcademyOptionnetwork storageConfiguration / maintenancedropboxDrew Houston MIThardware systemsMIT commencement 2013Data CenterRice UniversityDropbox CEO Drew HoustonMassachusetts Institute of Technology

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