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Dennis Ritchie, co-creator of Unix and C, has died

mikejuk (1801200) writes | more than 2 years ago

Programming 5

mikejuk (1801200) writes "Dennis Ritchie the designer and original developer of both the C programming language, and co-creator of Unix has died at age 71 after prolonged illness.
It seems incredible from today's perspective that two people, motivated mainly by enthusiasm, should develop both an operating system and a programming language but that's exactly what Dennis Ritchie and Ken Thomson achieved.
Unix and the Unix way of doing things eventually transmuted into Linux and is now the server OS that powers industry and the Internet.
C on the other hand has been the basis for all of the C-like languages we all know and use every day — Java, C# and of course C++. Whenever you write a three-parameter for loop, for(init;test;inc), you owe a debt to C and should think of the fun that Dennis Ritchie had inventing it and making it all work."

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5 comments

WTF (2)

genjix (959457) | more than 2 years ago | (#37699526)

>Greedy misanthropist that sold shiny gadgets with sweatshop labor dies and is praised by millions.

>Creator of the most widely used programming language of all time and pioneer of Unix, both arguably a significant contributing factor to the success of every modern tech company, dies and not a single newspaper cares.

Re:WTF (1)

erroneus (253617) | more than 2 years ago | (#37699822)

This is as it always has been.

The whole of humanity celebrates celebrities. (I wonder if there is a connection between those two words?) The reality is as reality always has been. Steve Jobs was a greedy sociopath. The people who actually make and do things are employed and used by the previously mentioned sociopaths.

It is an EXTREMELY rare person who can create great things and also be a great leader and icon. At the moment, I can't think of any. But other parallel examples of this scenario come to mind -- Edison vs. Tesla jumps to the front of my mind where Edison didn't so as much as people seem to think he did while Tesla's 'miracles' are still being rediscovered today.

You can bemoan the injustice of it all, but I have to ask you, who do you follow when you follow anyone? Even you have to admit the fact that marketing is far more important than cold hard facts and results. Intellectually, facts and results are appealing, but we are EMOTIONAL creatures as much as we would like to hide or suppress that fact. When it comes to buying, voting or even just admiring, we rely on emotion, not intellect.

K&R (1)

Kupfernigk (1190345) | more than 2 years ago | (#37700054)

I cut my teeth on Assembler and then acquired, more or less simultaneously, a Unix box and the White Book. Ritchie, you were a great man and I'm sad to hear that you were ill and died so young by modern standards.

As an agnostic I definitely don't believe in Heaven which is a pity, because if there was one they would currently be welcoming Dennis into an exclusive club which includes among others the builder of the Antikythera mechanism, Rene Descartes, Charles Babbage, Ada Lovelace, Alan Turing, Tommy Flowers, Max Newman, John von Neumann and Edgar Codd.

The marketing department, by the way, would be in Hell. But it would be OK, because they would be issuing tweets accentuating the positives ("Today we had Torment IV with the new improved prodding forks. But it was fine because the demons were holding them wrong.")

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