Monthly Archives: October 2011

Father Of C And UNIX, Dennis Ritchie, Passes Away At Age 70

After a long illness, Dennis Ritchie, father of Unix and an esteemed computer scientist, died last weekend at the age of 70.

Ritchie, also known as “dmr”, is best know for creating the C programming language as well as being instrumental in the development of UNIX along with Ken Thompson. Ritchie spent most of his career at Bell Labs, which at the time of his joining in 1967, was one of the largest phone providers in the U.S. and had one of the most well-known research labs in operation.

Working alongside Thompson (who had written B) at Bell in the late sixties, the two men set out to develop a more efficient operating system for the up-and-coming minicomputer, resulting in the release of Unix (running on a DEC PDP-1) in 1971.

Though Unix was cheap and compatible with just about any machine, allowing users to install a variety of software systems, the OS was written in machine (or assembly) language, meaning that it had a small vocabulary and suffered in relation to memory.

By 1973, Ritchie and Thompson had rewritten Unix in C, developing its syntax, functionality, and beyond to give the language the ability to program an operating system. The kernel was published in the same year.

Today, C remains the second most popular programming language in the world (or at least the language in which the second most lines of code have been written), and ushered in C++ and Java; while the pair’s work on Unix led to, among other things, Linus Torvalds’ Linux. The work has without a doubt made Ritchie one of the most important, if not under-recognized, engineers of the modern era.

His work, specifically in relation to UNIX, led to him becoming a joint recipient of the Turing Award with Ken Thompson in 1983, as well as a recipient of the National Medal of Technology in 1998 from then-president Bill Clinton.


Three days in FUDCon Milan 2011 – Day 3

The last day started at 9:30 AM too. Attendees proposed their sessions/presentations in barcamp-style again. After going around to share and learn a lot of interesting topics, I attended the most interesting one of the day, where Pierros Papadias, the chair of Fedora Ambassadors Steering Commitee moderated a talk about Fedora Ambbassadors’ work and how to improve everything. A long list of things were proposed by everyone and then Robyn came. At that time, we were discussing about the responsibility of FamSCo and CommArch about reimbursement. Some people complained they had not got reimbursement yet athough they filed tickets and got all done as needed. Robyn came and she was so surprised why it had been happened. It was a very positive and constructive discussion and lastly, Robyn promised everything would be fine after this discussion. I didn’t know if there is any related thing, but in that such evening, two my open tickets have been solved, god blessed me 🙂

The day ended with the closed ceremony. FUDCon Milan 2011 was ended sucessfully. See you all at the next FUDCons, FADs as well as any events.

I would take the time left to explore Milan, the capital of fashion.

Three days in FUDCon Milan 2011 – Day 2

The day started at 9:30 AM with the open ceremony speech from Jared Smith, our Fedora Project Leader. Then everyone proposed their sessions/presentations in barcamp-style. All proposed sessions/presentations were voted and then arranged to five rooms, two big ones and three smaller ones.

The most impressive session in the day is the presentation “You could be the next FPL” by Jared Smith, the current FPL. Jared talked about FPL’s work, tools, his attempts to get tider with the community and organize a better one, his feelings, his thoughts, etc. A lot of questions were asked about FPL, the project and the community.

Beside that, I went around and share/learn a lot of interesting things with other speakers/attendees from the way Fedora made, Fedora packaging, D-bus message queue and the necessary changes in Spin process proposed by Christoph.

There were just about five people in that Christoph’s session. However, it’s so interesting and useful with me. I understood the current process how a spin made and knew the new changes Christoph proposed to make it better. I knew how to make my idea of a spin for disabled people to real. Just a thought of a long time idea, I would keep in touch with Christoph and others.

We had got a nice FUDPub in the evening. On the way to Troppapizza, I discussed with Robert Scheck about Ambassador Mentor work. It’s not easy but also not too difficult. One of the main things a mentor should remember that to keep new ambassadors active, mentor should wait for their requests, and at all time, help them to get their ideas and work done.

FUDPub was really nice. I ate a lot of Italian pizza, a lot :), with a big glass of Italian beer then some little more (over a litre, wow :). It was ended at over 1:00 AM so I, Christoph, Pierros and someone came back to the hotel while almost others go to other places for more beer :). It’s carzy and so fun 🙂

Three days in FUDCon Milan 2011 – Day 1

It’s really nice to be here for my first FUDCon. After a long flight and huge wait, Milan is here.

Checking in the UNA hotel, someone called me. Who? Then, Christoph Wickert, the man from Germany, who helps me a lot to make the first Fedora package. Robyn Bergeron checked in after me; then a long discussion with all Fedorians at the lobby. Everyone was in a hurry to meet others.

FUDCon Welcome Party started at 7:00 PM at Yguana Cafe’ Restaurant. I could see almost attendees here. Someone I contacted via mail, IRC, etc., some others not. It’s a nice party. I could taste nice Italian foods and Milano cocktails.

After the party, almost people join together to a small pub to drink beer. I had chance to taste three kinds of Milano/Italian beer. They are different from Hanoi beer. However, they are so nice, the first one was light, but the others were so strong 🙂
The first day was ended with a short walk to sightsee a corner of Milano. Nice city, nice hotel and especially, nice people. That’s our community!