I’m a bit underwhelmed by the lack of response to Dennis Ritchie’s death among my developer friends and colleagues. It’s understandable that the average person doesn’t realize that he wouldn’t have a pc (Windows, Mac or Linux, doesn’t matter), mobile phone, GPS, modern TV or washing machine, and very likely no internet if Ritchie hadn’t invented C. But IT people, and especially developers, who owe Ritchie their career should show the utmost respect. Most modern-day programming languages are based on C: Objective C, C#, Java, PHP, you name it. Would you really want to be programming in Pascal, Basic or – good heavens! – COBOL for the rest of your career? Would you even have been an IT person?
This guy has done more for the world than Steve Jobs and Bill Gates added together and multiplied by a hexillion. That fact that he, contrary to the previously mentioned gentlemen, didn’t do it for money or fame makes him all the greater. We salute you, Dennis. Respect.