Michael Slater Resume


1973 – 1977 UC Berkeley College of Engineering B.S.E.E.


Webvanta Inc.

10/07 – Current CEO and Cofounder Webvanta provides complete, high-quality website solutions for educational institutions and mission-driven nonprofits. We created a cloud-based CMS and have used it as the heart of our web agency, as well as offering it to third parties. I led the company since its founding but have now retired due to health issues.

Adobe Systems

12/01 – 11/06

Director, Digital Imaging Research I acted as project manager for the first release of Photoshop Album, and then led a small team of developers building advanced features for photo management, including face recognition, use of visual similarity, and publishing to the web.

Topaz Web Solutions LLC

11/06 – 9/07 Proprietor Freelance developer of Ruby on Rails applications for small businesses, including a doctor’s office and a retirement planning firm.

Fotiva Inc.

2/00 – 12/01 Chairman and Cofounder Cofounder of venture-backed startup. Originally planned to build a tablet appliance for photos, under name PhotoTablet. Switched to developing PC software when it became apparent that the economics weren’t going to work for the tablet. Acquired by Adobe, which first marketing the Fotiva software as Photoshop Album and then combined it with Photoshop Elements for the PC as the organizer mode.

MicroDesign Resources Inc.

9/87 – 1/00 Founder and Principal Analyst Founding editor/publisher of Microprocessor Report newsletter, which was very widely read throughout the semiconductor and computer industries. Created and ran Microprocessor Forum and Embedded Processor Forum conferences and presented dozens of seminars.

Gryphon Engineering

9/80 – 9/89 Proprietor Designed and built microprocessor-based hardware and software for a variety of embedded applications.


7/77 – 7/80 Member Technical Staff Developed circuit designs for microprocessor-based troubleshooting training system, and wrote self-instructional manual to train technicians using the system, along with HP’s Signature Analysis test system.


Learning Rails podcast series

2007 Webvanta Christopher Haupt and I produced a very popular series of 8 podcasts and 15 screencasts to teach beginners how to use Ruby on Rails.

Organize Your Photos with Adobe Photoshop Elements 3

2005 Adobe Press A rewritten version of my Photoshop Album book, with Album integrated into Photoshop Elements.

The Adobe Photoshop Album 2.0 Book

2004 Adobe Press The Fotiva software was launched as Photoshop Album, and I wrote this book to convey my vision of how to use it.

A Guide to RISC Microprocessors

1992 Academic Press A collection of articles from Microprocessor Report describing all of the major RISC architecture.

Monthly Magazine Columns

1990 – 2000 Nikkei Electronics, IEEE Micro, EE Times, Computer Shopper I wrote monthly columns for more than a dozen magazines from 1990 – 2000.

Microprocessor Report

1987 – 2000 MicroDesign Resources Newsletter for the microprocessor industry and its users. I was founding editor, then editorial director, for 12 years. The newsletter is still being published.

Microprocessor-Based Design

1987 Prentice-Hall A practically oriented textbook on designing microprocessor-based hardware.

Practical Microprocessors: Hardware, Software, and Troubleshooting

1979 Hewlett-Packard Self-instructional text written to go with an HP training system (5036A Microprocessor Lab) to teach how to troubleshoot microprocessor-based systems.


Parting Thoughts

2016 – My personal website, with extensive photo galleries, book reviews, and essays, in addition to blog posts.


2005 – 2015 San Francisco Bay’s most comprehensive boating website. I created and ran this site for 10 years and sold it in 2015. It includes more than 1,000 of my photos, as well as extensive directory listings. (Unfortunately, it has now fallen into some disrepair under the new owners.)


Best Computer Newsletter

1990 – 1999 Computer Press Association Awarded first place four times.


Intelligent Fire Safety System

4531114A 5/6/82 An intelligent alarm system includes exit sign units having couplings to a smoke sensor and heat sensor for input information, a speech synthesizer and a strobe light to provide output information and a communication unit to provide communication coupling between exit sign units on a single floor and between interfloor interfaces and a central monitoring unit.

Version Set of Related Objects

7,945,541 5/17/11 In accordance with one or more embodiments, a version set of related objects may comprise a set and/or a group of multiple versions of an object such as multiple edited versions that may be displayed, rendered, manipulated, edited, and/or otherwise handled as a related grouping.

Digital Media Management Apparatus And Methods

20030033296 2/13/03 Methods and apparatus for managing, finding and displaying objects such as digital images. Objects are tagged (“associated”) with descriptive textual and numeric data (“metadata”), and stored in a relational database from which they can be selected, sorted, and found. Tags can be defined by name, tag type, and associated attributes. Objects can be tagged by dropping a tag onto the object, or relating a database record for the tag to a database record for the object.