Draper Prize Awarded to Pioneers of the Networked PC

Former Xerox PARC team to share US $500 000

3 min read

25 February 2004--Four computer engineers have been awarded this year�s Charles Stark Draper Prize--often referred to as engineering�s Nobel Prize--for the development of the first practical networked personal computers. Alan C. Kay, Butler W. Lampson, Robert W. Taylor, and Charles P. Thacker will share the US $500 000 award, which was presented last night by the U.S. National Academy of Engineering at a ceremony in Washington, D.C.

"These four prize recipients were the indispensable core of an amazing group of engineering minds that redefined the nature and purpose of computing," said the Academy�s President William A. Wulf.

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Why Functional Programming Should Be the Future of Software Development

It’s hard to learn, but your code will produce fewer nasty surprises

11 min read
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A plate of spaghetti made from code
Shira Inbar
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You’d expectthe longest and most costly phase in the lifecycle of a software product to be the initial development of the system, when all those great features are first imagined and then created. In fact, the hardest part comes later, during the maintenance phase. That’s when programmers pay the price for the shortcuts they took during development.

So why did they take shortcuts? Maybe they didn’t realize that they were cutting any corners. Only when their code was deployed and exercised by a lot of users did its hidden flaws come to light. And maybe the developers were rushed. Time-to-market pressures would almost guarantee that their software will contain more bugs than it would otherwise.

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