Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 1st Aug 2006 17:01 UTC, submitted by sean batten
In the News "At some hot, boring afternoon I got an idea. With the help of publicly accessible e-mail adresses I asked 10 questions to a bunch of programmers that I consider very interesting people and I respect them for variuos things they created."
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Ronald Vos
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Nice to see some high-profile names take time to answer these simple questions. Having the answers side by side show some interesting contrasts between the programmers with different backgrounds.

I just wish he kept the answers in the same order as the introduction.

Reply Score: 1

Awesome article
by CharAznable on Tue 1st Aug 2006 20:36 UTC
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Very nice, entertaining read. Liked Tim Bray's answer to what is the most important skill to a programmer: "Ability to prefer evidence to intuition". A very refreshing answer in its unromantic honesty.

Reply Score: 5

RE: Awesome article
by DHofmann on Tue 1st Aug 2006 21:52 UTC in reply to "Awesome article"
DHofmann Member since:

I liked David Heinemeier Hansson's reply (to a similar question): "The ability to restate hard problems as easy ones."

As C.A.R. Hoare once said: "There are two ways of constructing a software design. One way is to make it so simple that there are obviously no deficiencies. And the other way is to make it so complicated that there are no obvious deficiencies."

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Awesome article
by rcsteiner on Thu 3rd Aug 2006 19:33 UTC in reply to "RE: Awesome article"
rcsteiner Member since:

I liked David Heinemeier Hansson's reply (to a similar question): "The ability to restate hard problems as easy ones."

Yeah, it's easy to say that... :-) :-)

Reply Score: 1

by KenJackson on Tue 1st Aug 2006 21:35 UTC
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Great programmers learn how to program their tools, not just use them. Steve Yegge

Kind of in the same way the batlif becomes part of the klingon.

Reply Score: 1

some are great, others just loud
by theGrump on Tue 1st Aug 2006 22:10 UTC
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is steve yegge really one of the "great" coders? i would call him a prolific and sometimes interesting blogger, but i do not know of an outstanding body of code that he wrote that is considered exceptional.

linus, yes, you are a great coder. thats not in dispute.

dave thomas? writer.

tim bray? standards guy. blogger.

guido - yes, also a great coder.

peter norvig - scientist. coder? not sure.

gosling - yes probably a great coder too, although hasn't seem to have done much public work lately.

david hanson? sure, although i don't think you can stand him next to linus.

i would have had on my list:

- linus
- another kernel guy, maybe from another OS
- larry wall
- guido
- audrey tang of the pugs project
- someone from mozilla
- carmak (or another video game guy)
- paul graham (blogger who actually knows a lot about code)

Reply Score: 1

jayson.knight Member since:

I would have added:

- Stroustrup
- Hejlsberg

Good call on Carmak btw.

Reply Score: 1

tristan Member since:

You can add Knuth to the list for me. And Stallman, although I think his answers would just end up wrapped up in politics.

Reply Score: 1

by lopisaur on Tue 1st Aug 2006 23:22 UTC
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Good article, especially the irony when Linus mentions he has "a soft spot for Andrew Tanenbaum’s „Operating Systems: Design and Implementation”".

Reply Score: 1

RE: Nice
by rayiner on Wed 2nd Aug 2006 04:21 UTC in reply to "Nice"
rayiner Member since:

I don't really see the irony there. That book really is an excellent operating systems text, regardless of whether or not one agrees with Tannenbaum's particular philosophy of OS design.

Reply Score: 2

How about these guys
by fbrathwaite on Wed 2nd Aug 2006 02:17 UTC
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Alan Kay -> Smalltalk
Carl Sassenrath -> Rebol
Yukihiro Matsumoto -> Ruby

Reply Score: 1

by AkiFoblesia on Wed 2nd Aug 2006 02:36 UTC
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that was a great post!

now i would have to start with discrete mathematics and writing/speaking efficiently in english, aside from the IT courses i have set to learn within the coming months.

em glad to have read it. incidentally, what i learned from it would help.

Reply Score: 1

Linus and VB
by rx182 on Thu 3rd Aug 2006 07:40 UTC
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Read this blog, it's worth it! I had some fun reading it. A must if you're bored ;-)

I enjoyed the part where Linus says Visual Basic was more important than OO ;)

Reply Score: 1