Evi Nemeth is known worldwide as the lead author of the set of best-selling handbooks known as the “bibles” of system administration: Unix Systems Administration Handbook (1989, 1995, 2000) and LINUX Administration Handbook (2001, 2007). A visionary with a knack for foreseeing which trends would shape the direction of her field, Nemeth taught a popular class on “Hot Topics in System Administration” each year at the Usenix LISA conference. Colleagues at University of Colorado – Boulder became accustomed to seeing Nemeth’s mentees around campus: from talented undergraduates to middle and high school students with an interest in computing, Nemeth enlisted her “munchkins” in research projects and invited them to organizational meetings. Her outreach was not limited to her own area, and Nemeth also worked with the Internet Society and the United Nations Development Programme to help bring internet technology to the developing world.
Nemeth earned her PhD in Mathematics from the University of Waterloo, Ontario, in 1971 and taught at Florida Atlantic University and the State University of New York at Utica (SUNY Tech) before joining the Computer Science department at the University of Colorado – Boulder, where she taught from 1980 until her retirement in 2001. She also collaborated extensively with the Center for Applied Internet Data Analysis (CAIDA) at the University of California – San Diego, beginning with a guest faculty position in 1998. During this lengthy partnership, Nemeth co-authored numerous articles on DNS measurements and analysis, and developed an experimental Internet Engineering Curriculum Repository, an online resource designed to help educators stay up to date with new developments in the field.
After her retirement, Nemeth spent much of her time sailing, and traveled the world on her sailboat, the Wonderland. She was lost at sea, along with several friends, when their boat encountered a storm between New Zealand and Australia in June 2013.