Perhaps no one has had a greater affect on the way information—printed and electronic—is presented today than Muriel Cooper. As founder and co-director of MIT’s Visual Language Workshop, her explorations into the interactions between technology and design broke new ground in both graphic design and computer interface development. She designed covers for more than five hundred books, over one hundred of which have won design awards, and she was the second recipient of the American Institute of Graphic Design leadership award.
Muriel Cooper died in 1994 at age sixty-eight, the only female tenured professor in the MIT Media Lab. She made gigantic leaps forward, garnering the attention of even Bill Gates. She changed the way the design world thinks about typography, and her contributions have been described as “epic.” Cooper was eulogized in Wired magazine, and in 1997 a prize in her name was established at the Design Management Institute to honor individuals who “challenge our understanding and experience of interactive digital communication.”