From The New York Times:

“H. Donald Wilson, who prepared the original business plan for what became Mead Data Central and its pioneering Lexis-Nexis database, died on Nov. 12 at his home in Mitchellville, Md. He was 82.

“The cause was a heart attack, said his daughter Edith R. Wilson.

“Mr. Wilson, a lawyer and business consultant, was a managing partner at Arthur D. Little, the management consulting firm, in the late 1960s when he wrote the plan for what later became Lexis-Nexis, an early computerized system for retrieving information.

“In 1969, Mr. Wilson was asked by the Mead Corporation to assess a venture in computerized legal research that the company was considering. Mr. Wilson told his client that the searching of legal texts would be a useful tool for lawyers, as well as a promising business.

“He not only recommended that the company pursue the venture but also outlined a marketing plan for persuading law firms to adopt the technology.”