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A Celebration of Donald Knuth

Wed Jan 10 11:18:45 2018

Today1 is the anniversary of the birth of [Donald Knuth][dkwikie]. If you work in technology, mathematics or any of the sciences then you are likely to either know him or be using things that he created.

[Donald][dkwikie] is the author of the hugely influential and much copied Art of Programming, creator of a number of programming languages amongst which there is TeX the parent of LaTexX the default standard language for formatting scientific and mathematical books due to its flexibility in displaying formulae.

Donald Knuth Header

The header featuring Donald Knuth to be shown yearly on 10th January

[Donald][dkwikie] also created the family of Computer Modern typefaces and the METAFONT definition. He is a man who is synonymous with writing and setting standards for good performance and behaviour.

For Shadowcat we also like that [Donald][dkwikie] is vehemently opposed to granting software patents for frivolous, or obvious, things. He has composed letters to patent offices to explain why they are an issue. He doesn’t disagree with all patents, just that they should only be awarded for complex creations that are not an obvious addition.2

Go and read the wiki pages linked in this article and learn more about this fascinating individual.


  1. If you think these things are similar to the Google Doodle then you’d be right. It isn’t that we are trying to make ourselves a competitor it is that the Admin Boss really likes the idea of being able to change the heading of the page and to do funky things.

    They were inspired by the Google Doodle and that is enough of a reason to have them ourselves. ↩

  2. Do I hear a ‘one click’ from anyone? ↩