My Giants

Literate Programming

Enrico Spinielli


February 23, 2009

I am probably too selective, anyway my models for computer science/software engineering (one of them would disagree on both definitions) are just two: Donald E. Knuth and Alan Kay.

The first one continues to surprise me with the depth, clarity and joy of his works: from TeX (well, I use LaTex but it does not exist without TeX) to The Art of Computer Programming to Literate Programming.

About the latter, I was one of the blessed to be present to his Turing Award Lecture: he shocked me to the point I had two sleepless nights so angry I was about having wasted so much time in useless (computer) matters! After that I have been studying and using a lot of what he wrote and presented from Squeak to Croquet to the Burroughs B5000 and stack computers to his recent line of exploration and the proposal to NSF about reinventing programming (PDF).

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