Working in the computer world, as I have for the last 13 years, and specifically within the world of software development, one becomes familiar with a subculture of people whose notoriety is limited to hardened geeks. These people have affected (usually for the better) the world of computer science in positive ways, sometimes revolutionizing entire technologies or industries. At heart, they are geeks, and I thought it would be interested to list those geeks I admire.
- Jon Bentley wrote a couple of books that introduced me to facets of computer science that I was never aware of.
- Brian Kernighan invented the C programming language and UNIX along with Dennis Ritchie
- Donald Knuth wrote a famous series of computer science books and single-handedly invented TEX.
- Dennis Ritchie invented the C programming language and UNIX along with Brian Kernighan.
- Jamie Rubin. Come on, we’re being honest here. You’ve got to admire a geek who does things like this and this or enjoys stuff like this.
- Linus Torvalds took the idea of open source development to a whole new level.
- Larry Wall invented perl and gave millions of geeks a reason to stay up late at night writing poetry.
So there you have it, my list of geeks I admire, and the reasons I admire them. Don’t feel bad if you were left off the list this time around. You could always find yourself there next time. And please don’t feel bad if you found yourself on the list. If you’re on the list, there are sound reasons for your being there.