GirlHacker's Random Log

almost daily since 1999

RIP John McCarthy


I wish had an interesting John McCarthy story but mine is hum drum. I was at a talk at MIT circa 1990.  It was most likely about software patents but I don’t recall the topic exactly. Someone a few rows over stood up to ask a question (actually he made a statement, a good one) and a revered hush spread across the room as we collectively recognized the father of Lisp. He said his piece, sat down and that was that. Since I was actually a Cognitive Science major (who realized I only needed a few more courses for a resume-burnishing Computer Science major) the artificial intelligence topics were especially interesting. I spent a lot of time in LISP and Scheme during college and while I’ve never used them in my career, I’ve always strived for that elegance of expression.

Posted in education