My computer needs an as-you-were command

March 12, 2009

The $250,000 Turing Award, presented in recognition of work which makes computer programmes more reliable, secure and easier to use,  has been won by a Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor.

Only the second woman to win the prize, Barbara Liskov was honoured Tuesday for pioneering new designs in computer languages that gird everyday digital applications.

“Her exceptional achievements have leapt from the halls of academia to transform daily life around the world,” MIT Provost L. Rafael Reif said. “Every time you exchange e-mail with a friend, check your bank statement online or run a Google search, you are riding the momentum of her research.”

 

 

I do at least some of that most days without understanding how I do it, and usually without the  appreciation due for being able to do it.

It’s not that long ago that we had to go to banks to do any transactions, faxes were regarded as technological marvels which would replace snail mail and there was nothing that even approached the ease of a Google search.

So thank you Prof Liskov for making that easier and if you’re looking for another challenge perhaps you could turn your mind to a function which would save a file when someone clicks no after being asked if she wants to save it.

I  did that with a 1000 word essay last week. Fortuantely I’d printed it so it wasn’t as inconvenient as it might have been, but the equivalent of the military as-you-were command for computers would help protect users like me from our own stupidity.


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