Maxwell M. Burnet B.SC.(Hons) MACS

Max Burnet graduated from Melbourne University and Ormond College with a BSc (Hons) in electronics in 1962. He then spent 4 years at the Weapons Research Establishment in South Australia as a Scientific Officer.

He joined Digital Equipment Corporation Australia in 1967 and spent 31 years with them, becoming the longest serving employee in Australia. During that time he sold hundreds of the early mini-computers in Australia.

Burnet opened Digital's Melbourne and Adelaide offices and was Managing Director of Digital in Australia for 7 years until 1982. In later years he managed Digital's local content projects. For twenty years he managed Digital's user society, DECUS, which had up to 5000 loyal members in Australia.

In 1998 he took early retirement a few days before the Compaq takeover, not wishing to be 'compaqted'.

During his time at Digital, Burnet collected a museum of all the early DEC computers and was known around the company as 'Museum Max'.

In 1993 he was one of 15 pioneers featured in Computerworld Newspaper's 'Pioneers of Australian Computing' booklet.

Burnet then had a company called BACK Pty Ltd, which was Burnet Antique Computer Knowhow - and used his museum collection to provide for porting of old media and all manner of technical, educational, historical and display activities. BACK had a private collection of over 5000 computing artifacts and documents.

He was an authority on early Australian-made computers and mounted a number of significant exhibitions on computing history. He provided computers for movie set props, and was also called as an expert witness in technology-based law cases.

During the '' boom Burnet was the first Australian employee of Fairmarket Inc. and was project manager for the move of a massive web server from News Limited to the Optus Data Centre at Rosebery.

He was honorary secretary of three associations: The Hornby Collectors Association of Australia Inc, the Australian Computer Museum Society Inc and the Sydney branch of the Melbourne University Alumni Association; and was a life member of the Western District Athletic Club of SA, the HRCAA Inc, and of DECUS.

Max Burnet passed away in 2023.

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