2115 Bowdoin Street
Palo Alto, California 94306
650 888-9632

J. Donald Tillman



A substantial career in software engineering (from web technologies to microcode, artificial intelligence to digital signal processing, object oriented programming to CAD), analog circuit design (audio, signal processing, discrete bipolar and FET design), digital circuit design (logic, system design), product design, music, with much interest in math, physics, business, and economics.

Expertise in product development and design, the software development process, well-crafted product design, and user experience. Shipped a career total of over 120 products. A big fan of entrepreneurship; worked for six startup companies, three of which went public.

Fluent in: Python, Java, JavaScript, Lisp, C, XML, HTML, XHTML, CSS, PostScript, etc.

Employment History

Consolidated Fuzz
Palo Alto, California
CEO, Founder, 2013 to present

Startup company with a platform that delivers the electronics musicians love in a modular form that solves numerous problems and is super-efficient to manufacture.

Riverbed Technology, Inc.
San Francisco / Sunnyvale, California
Technical Staff, User Interface Architect, 2005-2013

Riverbed network appliances accelerate the performance of Wide Area Networks by an order of magnitude or more. Designed and implemented a powerful, robust, and professional UI framework with advanced web technologies (Python, AJAX, XHTML/CSS) serving as the base for most of the company's products. Implemented the user interfaces for the two main product lines: the Steelhead WAN optimizer and the Central Management Console (manages an installation of up to thousands of network appliances). These are substantial web setups, about 80 pages each. This helped grow the company revenue from $22 million to $840 million.

The UI framework includes a package for consistently generating widgets from declarations, with features including input validation, role-based management, retargeting to a policy, graceful error handling, a package for generating powerful AJAX-based tables with a lot of features, and mechanisms for presenting complex arrangements of widgets and user interactions.

Kazeon Systems, Inc. (now part of EMC Corp.)
Mountain View, California
Senior Member of the Technical Staff, 2004-2005

The Kazeon Information Server is an appliance that crawls, analyzes, indexes, and classifies large quantities of unstructured data at corporate IT sites for purposes of search, compliance, discovery and data management. The system runs as a cluster for scalability. Design and implementation of the Search and Audit User Interface (Apache Tomcat, Java Servlets, JSP, XML, BEEP). Implementation of the Policy Engine with LDAP persistence. Defined and promoted company software development standards.

Sigaba / Secure Data in Motion, Inc. (now part of Proofpoint, Inc.)
San Mateo, California
Principal Member of the Technical Staff, 2002-2004

Designed and developed Sigaba Secure Statements (now Proofpoint Email Encryption), a system to deliver important documents such as invoices, financial statements and medical records securely over email with encryption, signing and authentication. High performance with an ActiveX Control if possible, otherwise backing off to a decryption server.

Marimba, Inc. (now part of BMC Software)
Mountain View, California
Senior Engineer, 1998-2001

Major contributions to the Marimba Castanet Internet Infrastructure Suite, a system to efficiently distribute a software application over standard internet protocols. Ported Castanet to the Macintosh, to Linux, and to the SCO UnixWare platforms.

Netscape Communications, Inc. (now part of AOL, Inc.)
Mountain View, California
Senior Software Engineer, 1996-1998

Development of Netscape Visual JavaScript, an Integrated Development Environment for building dynamic web pages wtih HTML, JavaScript, form elements, Java Beans, Java Applets, and database access tools. The components are dropped onto a semi-WYSIWYG page editor and connected up with JavaScript code.

Apple Computer, Inc., Advanced Technology Group
Cupertino, California
Contracting as an independent consultant, 1993-1996

Software development and system design for SK8, a multimedia multiplatform object-oriented authoring tool and development environment. Built a Common Lisp interface to Mathematica for solving complex constraint systems, benchmarking tools, tree-shaking features for smaller deliverable applications, threading, source language backtracing, breakpoints, stepping, and condition handling.

Lucid, Inc. (now part of LispWorks, Ltd.)
Menlo Park, California
Computer Scientist, 1989-1992

Ported the Lucid Common Lisp compiler and development environment to Sun SPARCStation, DEC VAX and DECStations, 386/486 PCs, and Hewlett-Packard Precision Architecture. Taught several Lisp courses, presented a talk at Xhibition 89, the X-Windows conference.

Consulted for Intel's AI group, designing and implementing a sizable portion of an expert system to schedule an integrated circuit manufacturing facility, maximizing throughput with roughly 20 products, 200 hundred steps in the manufacturing process, 300 machines, and thousands of lots of wafers. Built the object-oriented factory model, the model editor, the strategy and tactics editor, the interface with manufacturing floor databases, and optimization algorithms.

Symbolics, Inc.
Cambridge, Massachusetts and Chatsworth, California
Senior Member of the Technical Staff, 1983-1988

Symbolics was founded in 1980 by a dozen researchers from the MIT Artificial Intelligence Lab to produce the most advanced Lisp Machine and development environment. A Lisp Machine is a computer with an instruction set that natively implements the Lisp language an order of magnitude faster than a general purpose architecture.

Software support and maintenance for the compiler, operating system internals, window system, and user interface. Wrote hardware logic compilers, Phase Locked Loop simulation software and disk driver utilities. Developed disk performance evaluation tools and diagnostics, contributed to the disk driver microcode, developed electrical CAD system utilities for board level designs and PC layout. Designed parts libraries and integrated plotting utilities. Designed the ST506 and ESDI disk interface systems for the Symbolics 3640 Lisp Machine. Designed the Front End Processor / IO Board for the Symbolics 3620 Lisp Machine that includes a 68000-series processor, SCSI disk and tape controller, Ethernet interface, serial ports, buffer memory, and bus interface logic.

Digital Equipment Corporation (now Hewlett-Packard), Video Terminals Group
Maynard, Massachusetts
Electrical Engineer, 1983

Electrical design of the modem for the VT220 terminal. DSP analysis for a DSP-based modem.

Texas Instruments, Inc., Data Systems Group
Houston, Texas
Design Engineer, 1981-1983

Electrical design of the video section of the TI931 video terminal. Designed the video system IC used in the TI OPTI 940 video terminal and the TI Professional Computer. Design of a Color Lookup Table IC and memory expansion board.

University of Wisconsin, Space Science and Engineering Center
Madison, Wisconsin
Technician, 1980

Electronic work on ground support equipment for the Hubble Space Telescope.

I. W. Turner, Inc.
Port Washington, New York
Electrical Engineer, 1974-1976

Designed the Sequencer, Ring Modulator, and several Waveform Generator products for this small electronic music company. Designed a phase shifter guitar pedal that was branded as the Ampeg Phazzer.


University of Wisconsin
Madison, Wisconsin
1980, Graduate study, Electrical and Computer Engineering.
1977-1979, B.S., Electrical and Computer Engineering.
Specializing in communications, digital signal processing, computer aided design.

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Troy, New York
1975 to 1976
Electrical Engineering major.

Member, Audio Engineering Society.


Electronic Music Articles

ARP Instruments entry, Grove Dictionary of Musical Instruments, Oxford University Press (2nd edition, 2014)
Square Wave Variations
Quadrature Trapezoid Voltage Controlled Oscillator
Voltage Controlled Duty Cycle Sawtooth Circuit
An Interpolating Scanner Circuit
Moog Synthesizer Patent Reviews
ARP Synthesizer Patent Reviews
Mellotron Patent Reviews
Response Effects of Guitar Pickup Position and Width
Response Effects of Guitar Pickup Mixing
Pickup Response Demonstration Applet
A Discrete FET Guitar Preamp
An FET Preamp Cable

(These are all referenced by numerous Wikipedia pages. The Guitar Pickup articles have been referenced in the Journal of the Audio Engineering Society. The Doepfer A-110-6 Oscillator is based on my article.)


Composing and arranging; play guitar, keyboards, bass, electronics.
Leader of Tesseract, a local progressive rock band (1995-2002).

Album Credits

The Loud Family, Plants and Birds and Rocks and Things, 1993, ARP Synthesizer.
The Loud Family, Interbabe Concern, 1996, Moog and Buchla Synthesizers, Mellotron.
Tesseract, Tesseract, 1997, 6- and 12-string guitars, keyboards, production, engineering.
BayProg Sampler, 2002, guitars, keyboards, production.