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HP Programming Technology

HP Fires Father of OOP 697

Posted by CowboyNeal
from the hard-times dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Wow. Hewlett-Packard has disbanded its Advanced Software Research team and sent its leader, reknowned programmer Alan Kay, packing. From today's Good Morning Silicon Valley: 'HP is bidding adieu to legendary Silicon Valley technologist Alan Kay. A founder of Xerox's Palo Alto Research Center, Kay -- who once said, "The best way to predict the future is to invent it" -- was instrumental in the development of the windowing GUI and modern object-oriented programming. He envisioned a laptop computer long before the first ones rolled out and his Smalltalk programming language was a predecessor to Sun Microsystems' Java. Hard to believe HP's cutting him loose.' Maybe Apple will hire him."
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HP Fires Father of OOP

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  • And... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward
    People wonder why no one is going into CS anymore.
    • Re:And... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Coryoth (254751) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:24PM (#13131129) Homepage Journal
      People wonder why no one is going into CS anymore.

      If you honestly think he'll be struggling to find a well paying job elsewhere you're deluding yourself. Just because large floundering corporations are laying off good CS people doesn't mean much. Mostly what it means is that HP obviously doesn't have any long term vision anymore, and are probably very much on the way out.

      Jedidiah.
      • Re:And... (Score:3, Informative)

        by walt-sjc (145127)
        Yep - HP has really lost it. Having just gone through an RFP process for an enterprise SAN, we looked at HP since most of our servers were HP. What a disappointing offering! Nothing innovative at all. IBM, NetApp, and EMC blew them away.
        • Re:And... (Score:3, Insightful)

          by rodgerd (402)
          HP has really lost it
          Exactly. HP is no longer an engineering company, it's a low-end PC builder.
          • by attemptedgoalie (634133) on Friday July 22, 2005 @02:38AM (#13132903)
            HP stock dives when Lexmark sells 3 printers. Because HP is just a printing company.

            HP stock dives when Dell changes their standard chassis color. Because HP is just a PC company.

            HP stock dives when IBM does some new services campaign. Because HP is just a consulting company.

            HP stock dives because they announce a new technology out of HP Labs. Because Dell doesn't have R&D, they save all that cash. HP is stupid for spending on that when they could just repaint Intel systems.

            HP stock dove this week because somebody leaked that they'd lay off 25,000 people. When it ended up only being 14,500, HP just wasn't serious about cutting costs.

            I am not saying that HP is fantastic, I am just saying that to call them just a PC company is silly. We all know that two articles from now (since there will be a dupe of this one before the next new article) it will be about printing, and everybody will say how HP is going to die since all they do is make printers...

            It will be an interesting year for HP. By 6/1/06, the company could look completely different.

            And one thing to consider, no computer seller is an engineering company any longer. Dell never was, Lenovo isn't going to be, Gateway isn't.

            Agilent is the engineering half of HP.
            • And one thing to consider, no computer seller is an engineering company any longer. Dell never was, Lenovo isn't going to be, Gateway isn't.
              i can think of at least one [apple.com]; Sony probably qualifies, too (some of the Viao's are very well engineered, given their goals).
      • Re:And... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by alienw (585907) <alienw.slashdot@gma[ ]com ['il.' in gap]> on Thursday July 21, 2005 @10:02PM (#13131385)
        If you honestly think he'll be struggling to find a well paying job elsewhere you're deluding yourself

        I'm not worried about him, I'm more worried about my own ass. If even large corporations don't need CS visionaries anymore, then CS is no longer a hot field. Thus, your main choices for a job are: coding boring business apps all day, or supporting boring and poorly written business apps all day. Real CS jobs (ones which depend on talent, rather than a "skillset" of buzzwords) are getting very difficult to come by.
        • Re:And... (Score:3, Insightful)

          by fsterman (519061)
          This is a troll.

          CS visionaries are smart people who work in a particular field. Every field of work has the same type of "real jobs" you are describing. From CS, to plumbing, to glass blowing! And that's from personal experience.
          • Re:And... (Score:5, Interesting)

            by superpulpsicle (533373) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @10:51PM (#13131636)
            But it's not a troll. It's a fact!

            CS majors are smart people, but the US economy is dying for innovating marketing and business people to help them resell existing shit.

            The only time I have seen US CS majors gain immediate value is when they go abroad. There are plenty of companies in China, India, HK, Canada, Australia that would love to get their hands on top CS majors from the US.

          • Re:And... (Score:3, Insightful)

            by alienw (585907)
            Smart people are just that -- smart people. Visionaries are those who significantly advance the state of the art. There is quite a difference there. I'm sure there are quite a few smart plumbers out there, but how many of them can claim to have revolutionized plumbing?
      • Re:And... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by yog (19073) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @10:10PM (#13131422) Homepage Journal
        HP has a fairly long history [pegasus3d.com] of getting rid of geniuses. Doubtlessly there are a few who remain well employed, but rejecting Wozniak and Jobs' idea for a personal computer has to rank with one of the all-time mistakes in corporate America, up there with the Coca-Cola Company not buying Pepsi when it had the chance, IBM giving a small software company a monopoly on its PC operating system, etc.

        I suspect that somehow HP will muddle through, just as IBM did. They're still a good company, despite the damage Fiorina caused them with their expensive and ill-considered buyout of Compaq Computers.
        • Re:And... (Score:3, Insightful)

          by DenDave (700621)
          HP is grooming for a buy out. Dropping human capital liabilities and cutting up operational units. This is one ship thats on the auction block! Watch what they do to the Q3 statements... by Christmass its for sale. And remember, you first heard about it on /.!!

        • Corporate blunders (Score:4, Interesting)

          by Khelder (34398) on Friday July 22, 2005 @08:38AM (#13134130)
          On the topic of corporate mistakes, one of my favorites is IBM and GE (and others, but I don't know who) turning down the patent for photocopying [wikipedia.org] when its inventor offered it to them. They didn't think there was a market for copiers.
      • by PapayaSF (721268) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @10:11PM (#13131426) Journal
        Mostly what it means is that HP obviously doesn't have any long term vision anymore, and are probably very much on the way out.

        About seven years ago I was a sub-sub-contractor working on a project for HP. A minor style issue came up on the documents I was formatting style sheets for: should there be a hyphen here or not? When I asked my contact at HP, he said: "I'll have to ask the committee about that."

        I thought: This company is doomed!
    • Re:And... (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Alomex (148003) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:53PM (#13131334) Homepage
      People wonder why no one is going into CS anymore.

      Actually employment stats bottomed in 2002 and have been picking up since. At the same time a lot of people are making the same mistake you did, which is reading too much in to the random firing.

      In sum the overall picture is something like IT employment down 10% but rising back up, CS enrolment down 50% and falling.

      Guess what that translates into? A shortage of CSers four years from now.

    • by joib (70841)
      Jim Gettys (the X Window System guy) also got the boot from HP. It is mentioned here [onlamp.com].
  • HP Slogans (Score:4, Insightful)

    by randalware (720317) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:19PM (#13131092) Journal


    HP Invent ---- Isn't that hard without inventors ?
    • Re:HP Slogans (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Alaren (682568) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:33PM (#13131198)

      Actually, what they meant to say was "HP Invest." Just one letter. Simple mistake, really.

      But there you have it. I was reading this article [commondreams.org] about America's economy today and wondering if it wasn't a bit alarmist. But as an IT employee of a privately owned company, I have to admit that I am quite nervous about the prospect of an IPO (not that I have any idea when or if it will happen)... although I might make a decent amount of money on stock options, I'm not ranked high enough that I would be able to retire.

      And once the IPO goes through, suddenly it's no longer about employees and customers but aout shareholders and reports and juggling meaningless numbers. It ultimately doesn't matter how talented someone is; talent doesn't appear on the report that says "Cut X number of employees in order to free up some cash so our quarterly will attract more investors."

      • by daeley (126313) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:40PM (#13131255) Homepage
        Actually, what they meant to say was "HP Invest." Just one letter. Simple mistake, really.

        Actually actually, I think it meant to say "HP Invert", as in Rectal-Cranial Inversion, which is what HP has collectively accomplished with moves like this.
        • by handy_vandal (606174) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:48PM (#13131304) Homepage Journal
          Actually, what they meant to say was "HP Invest." Just one letter. Simple mistake, really.

          Actually actually, I think it meant to say "HP Invert", as in Rectal-Cranial Inversion, which is what HP has collectively accomplished with moves like this.

          Fact: they meant to say "HP Invect" -- that is, to issue invective.

          Examples:

          "Fuck you, losers -- we're better off without you!"

          And:

          "HP Rules! U-S-A-!! U-S-A-!!," etc.

          -kgj
          • by skraps (650379) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @10:00PM (#13131370)

            Actually, what they meant to say was "HP Invest." Just one letter. Simple mistake, really.

            Actually actually, I think it meant to say "HP Invert", as in Rectal-Cranial Inversion, which is what HP has collectively accomplished with moves like this.

            Fact: they meant to say "HP Invect" -- that is, to issue invective.

            Actual fact: they meant to say "HP Invebt" -- the meaning of which is unknown.

            • by SpaceLifeForm (228190) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @10:47PM (#13131609)
              HP Indebt?
    • Re:HP Slogans (Score:3, Informative)

      by chris09876 (643289)
      I had a close friend who worked for HP about a year ago. He was shocked at how inefficient everything was run, and how they participated in a lot of unprofitable (and wasteful) activities. His biggest comment was that their slogan should be "HP Rebrand", since that's all they do. There hasn't been any significant advancements or innovations made, nor any large pushes to making useful discoveries.
  • ...to come up with a new DRM.
    • by 0xC0FFEE (763100) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:29PM (#13131166)
      Kay as already been at Apple, during the early Macintosh day. He's been at Xeros during the days of the Alto, worked on SmallTalk. Some people will tell you there as never been anything like it since.

      Kay is the kind of people that have too much ideas and not enough time to research or implement all of them (in a good sense of course). That means he's got potential ideas lined up waiting for some CPU cycles to become available. You give him carte blanche over a talented team and he create amazing stuff. I'd be the ideal person to build an "Internet Plateform", whatever it is. I can tell what exists today is not "it" and barely registers as functional in his mind. I'd be surprised if he doesn't end at Google.

      • Kay as already been at Apple

        But Sculley's gone, and Apple's current management is much more interested in productivity than prestige.

        Alan Kay should be an academic.
  • by AtariAmarok (451306) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:19PM (#13131101)
    Especially appropriate, now that the mother of "Oops!" [hp.com] is out of the picture.
  • Wow. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by NDPTAL85 (260093) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:20PM (#13131103)
    Looks like Hurd is turning HP into a lean machine to be as focused on products and price as Dell currently is.
    • by blueZhift (652272) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:37PM (#13131230) Homepage Journal
      Looks like Hurd is turning HP into a lean machine to be as focused on products and price as Dell currently is.

      Sigh...Dell does what it does pretty well, but they are definitely not a company known for much imagination or innovation. They generally follow after someone else has blazed the path, a strategy that must fail once all of the true innovators have been eliminated. We don't really need any more Dells. If HP becomes just like Dell, then why should I buy from them? I might as well buy from Dell.

      HP can still succeed, but they need to do so by being HP. Efficiency is good, but not at the expense of the good things that make HP stand out from the crowd and create future opportunities. I think farmers say that you shouldn't eat the seed corn.
  • Something's Fishy (Score:2, Interesting)

    by bigwavejas (678602) *
    I wouldn't be surprised if HP Execs got wind of him wanting to resign, so they beat him to it. This would save HP from an embarassing loss (someone jumping ship) and make it look like they were just "cleaning house."
    • Yes, that's why they're cancelling four of the company's research projects, to "save face" when they heard he wanted to resign. Right. I think you might be trying just a little too hard here to be the one to cleverly figure out the "story behind the story" analysis that 'everyone else missed' ;)

  • Google (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Altanar (56809) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:21PM (#13131109)
    I predict that Google announces that they hired him in a week.
  • by orthogonal (588627) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:23PM (#13131126) Journal
    Maybe Alan Kay'll be lucky, and Carly Fiorini will hire him for wherever she's going to be CEO next!

    I hear she's a wiz at turning companies around!

    Oh wait....
  • Bad Idea (Score:4, Funny)

    by west.to.east (867173) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:24PM (#13131130)
    Reminds me of the "Bad Idea Jeans" SNL commercial
  • by konmaskisin (213498) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:27PM (#13131155) Journal
    Bidding ware anyone?
  • by angst_ridden_hipster (23104) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:28PM (#13131162) Homepage Journal
    "I invented the term Object-Oriented, and I can tell you I did not have C++ in mind."
    - Alan Kay

    I don't know if this is a true quotation, or is apocryphal, but it's good enough to throw around at random.

    I'm sure Mr. Kay will not have any problem finding a job, should he so desire one. Regardless, I wish him the best of luck.
  • Just because he was a promiment innovator many years ago doesn't imply he is just as innovative now. It's a possibility that HP is letting him go because he isn't innovating or contributing on par with other researchers.
    • by Dioscorea (821163) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:37PM (#13131231) Homepage
      Check out some of his presentations of open croquet before you say that (see e.g. here [lisarein.com]). He is bringing the kind of OpenGL graphics that gamers have got used to into the mainstream GUI. It is among the most innovative and forward-looking interface development I've seen. Do we really think we'll be dragging windows around a 2D desktop in 30 years time?
  • by Dioscorea (821163) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:33PM (#13131192) Homepage
    I wonder what will happen to Open Croquet [opencroquet.org] and TeaTime [doebe.li] without his leadership. It does seem as if Croquet has gained quite a bit of open-source momentum by this stage, and is the current best contender for bringing the world of Snow Crash to our desktop.

    I just hope development on Croquet doesn't stall now, otherwise us cyberspace-lusting techno-hopefuls will just have to wait for the inevitable (but still hopefully far-off) day where you can open Word documents and Excel spreadsheets from inside World of Warcraft.

    • I wonder what will happen to Open Croquet [opencroquet.org] and TeaTime [doebe.li] without his leadership ... I just hope development on Croquet doesn't stall now, otherwise us cyberspace-lusting techno-hopefuls will just have to wait for the inevitable (but still hopefully far-off) day where you can open Word documents and Excel spreadsheets from inside World of Warcraft.

      I wish I had mod points! This is both +Informative and way, way +Funny -- !

      -kgj
  • Smalltalk (Score:5, Informative)

    by pthisis (27352) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:34PM (#13131199) Homepage Journal
    ...is the antithesis of the Java B&D philosophy. It's an aggressively dynamically typed language, and is much more of a precursor to Python or Ruby than Java.
    • Re:Smalltalk (Score:5, Informative)

      by Concerned Onlooker (473481) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:46PM (#13131296) Homepage Journal
      It is also partially what Objective-C is based on. According to the wikipedia entry "the syntax for certain object-oriented features, including message-passing, is borrowed from Smalltalk."

      While you say "aggressively dynmically typed" you also remember you always have the option of statically typing.

      • Re:Smalltalk (Score:4, Informative)

        by ajjfk (11756) on Friday July 22, 2005 @01:01AM (#13132513)
        According to someone who was there when Java was created, Java Was Strongly Influenced by Objective-C [virtualschool.edu] and did indeed borrow from Smalltalk: "When I left Sun to go to NeXT, I thought Objective-C was the coolest thing since sliced bread, and I hated C++. So, naturally when I stayed to start the (eventually) Java project, Obj-C had a big influence. James Gosling, being much older than I was, he had lots of experience with SmallTalk and Simula68, which we also borrowed from liberally." -- Patrick Naughton (for good or ill [rotten.com].
  • by jafac (1449)
    Unfortunately, when HP bent over, and seductively waved it's corporate hieney at Microsoft and Intel, they gave up any chance they had of "inventing the future".

    On the bright side, Kay will probably end up getting hired at a real company that wants to actually innovate.
  • by alangmead (109702) * on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:34PM (#13131203)
    In between his stints as a Chief Scientist at Atari and a Disney Fellow at Walt Disney Imagineering, he was an Apple Fellow. (his bio on O'Reilly.com [oreillynet.com] has more info.)

    That is why the Squeak license still mentions Apple

  • ... or are they?

    Wow. This is just, wow. I wish however is in control these days would spin off the "real hp" into a company unto its own and let the hp we see now continue its moronic quest to mirror Dell. Keep getting rid of the things that made hp and they'll kill hp for good, or at least debase it to a lame Dell knockoff. Sad to see it get this low.
    • by sirwired (27582)
      I wish however is in control these days would spin off the "real hp" into a company unto its own

      Already done several years ago. It's called Agilent.

      SirWired
  • by interrupt75 (230702) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:35PM (#13131211)
    There are some excellent videos on archive.org of Alan Kay explaining some of the early GUI projects (including Xerox and the early laptop "prototype") http://www.archive.org/details/AlanKeyD1987 [archive.org] http://www.archive.org/details/AlanKeyD1987_2 [archive.org]
  • by standards (461431) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:36PM (#13131220)
    HP doesn't need innovators like Kay. HP is totally into innovating new ways to make money off of printer consumables, and that isn't an expertise that Kay brings to the table.

    HP's downfall started to happen as soon as they started selling tons of LaserJet printers.

    From there, HP seemed to take a little break and brought nothing new to market. Instead of making great new products, they kept on milking the same printer lines until they got old, crusty, and expensive to operate. They tried to do the same thing with their PC line. They unloaded or failed to focus on their other product lines.

    I haven't bought an HP product in years. My ex-girlfriend bought an HP inkjet printer, but it failed quickly and the consumables were ridiculously expensive. It just didn't seem like an HP quality product to me.

    So HP fired Alan Kay? That's good for Alan. Because who wants to work for an ink-n-toner company?
    • by william_w_bush (817571) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @10:39PM (#13131564)
      This is the difference between a company and a business. A business is a company that has found its cash cow, and firmly opposes any further research or innovation that does not serve that golden calf. New technologies are particularly opposed, as they tend to change the business model, which requires the company to adapt (horrifying word to mba's btw, it requires thinking), to recreate the original, and beautiful, holy equilibrium, allowing the business to slowly move on, possibly growing into associated markets, without anything ever actually changing.

      Technology is only good as long as it can be seen as an evolutionary step, and is almost exlcusively performed by the marketing department, leading to the terms "new and improved", and "version 2.0"(heh, or "XP").

      Change is bad, Microsoft blew $5B on the Xbox project so far simply to keep sony from possibly threatening the windows empire with the ps2.

      Fear change, go with the names you trust, these are not the droids you are looking for.

      And the band played on.
  • Laptop? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by fm6 (162816) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:36PM (#13131221) Homepage Journal
    He envisioned a laptop computer long before the first ones rolled out...
    Kay's Dynabook concept was more like a PDA or tablet than a laptop. Though more powerful than any of these. What he was really doing was trying to imagine what computing would be like when it was totally pervasive, and had completely replaced low-tech means of accessing and using information.

    On that basis, the rest of us still haven't caught up with him! Things like GUIs, portable computers, wireless networking, and the web are all steps towards the future he envisioned. But that future is still a long ways away.

  • by necrognome (236545) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:37PM (#13131227) Homepage
    I'll post instead of mod, but I think that /. should nix the HP logo. The entity known as "HP" is currently undeserving of any relation to the Hewlett-Packard legacy of computing, innovation, research, precision devices, calculators!, and, yes, printers. "HP" is really just a printer company now. Change the /. icon to a LaserJet or something, but "Hewlett-Packard" it's not. Okay, I have more b33r to drink...
  • by jsse (254124) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:41PM (#13131261) Homepage Journal
    Layoff 15,000 Employees [slashdot.org], shut down user group [slashdot.org], now firing key persons in R&D.....even the dumbest employee could tell what's in their CEO Carly's mind - cutting as much cost as possible, create a artificial short-term profit hype, so that she can retreat with huge severance package for her 'accomplishment'; but what'd that leave HP? A living hell of disolation, without any competitive edge to continue their business as usual.

    How could the board approve of her action which is obviously doing nothing more than achieving her own personal goal while damaging the company as a whole? Unless, of course, the major investors who back Carly approve of this. I cannot tell for sure, but that's very possible - the major investors believe that HP is doomed.
  • by craig.larman (901716) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:44PM (#13131285)
    i can understand that it's really too trivial to have mentioned in his Bio intro, but Alan Kay also won some minor award recently -- think it's called the TURING AWARD. i can't imagine why anyone would want to employ such a slacker. http://internetnews.com/dev-news/article.php/33425 11/ [internetnews.com] -craig
    • Lesson in reality (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Fastball (91927)
      I know this won't be a popular sentiment, but I think it's worth writing, so here goes...

      You want to get into computer science? Look what happens to a winner of the Turing Award. Computer science, programming, and just about anything related to computers is now passe. It's no longer a book of spells from which you cast great power. It is a hack-n-slash battle of attrition. "Just get it done" is the new methodology. R&D is old school.

      Everyone wants to launch in against HP or the corporation in general
  • by Mr_Icon (124425) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:45PM (#13131289) Homepage

    Harry Potter fires the father of the Order Of the Phoenix? Wha?

    ...

    OH.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:45PM (#13131291)
    HP laid off 15k workers, but is currently heavily recruiting engineers in India and China. Just take a look at the Job section on hp.com.

    HP has obviously abandoned the USA and it's time we abandon this dying company.
  • by darkmayo (251580) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @09:58PM (#13131363)
    Yea you know me
  • by WindBourne (631190) on Thursday July 21, 2005 @10:04PM (#13131393) Journal
    Bill Gates scooped up the VMS team. My bet is that BG is already on site and trying hard to pick up these folks.
  • by jcr (53032) <.jcr. .at. .mac.com.> on Thursday July 21, 2005 @10:35PM (#13131540) Journal
    I don't find this hard to believe at all. HP's not in the blue-sky R&D business, and hasn't been for many years now.

    What I don't get, is why he ever went to HP in the first place.

    -jcr

  • by Tablizer (95088) on Friday July 22, 2005 @12:16AM (#13132231) Homepage Journal
    Wasn't OO invented in northern europe the mid 60's in the Simula language by a guy named something like Nygaard?
    • by kyrre (197103) on Friday July 22, 2005 @02:14AM (#13132827)
      They where Kristen Nygaard [wikipedia.org] and Ole-Johan Dahl [wikipedia.org] working at Norwegian Computing Center. At least Nygaard have taught many young norwegians object oriented programming at the univeristy of Oslo. I think they still use Simula there. I was lucky enough to attend a course with him once. Nygaard told me the story of how they came up with OOP himself.

      They both died in 2002.

      Lately I have heard more than once that Alan Kay is the father of Object Oriented programming. But it seems he is the father of dynamic object oriented programming. At least that is what Wikipedia say. Why is the world already forgetting Nygaard and Dahl?

  • by PlacidPundit (881182) <placidpundit&hotmail,com> on Friday July 22, 2005 @01:07AM (#13132550) Homepage
    After all, the Smalltalk branch of OOP philosophy is the driving force behind Objective-C and Cocoa. And Apple is really starting to do some interesting work in advancing the usefulness of computers, which is right up Kay's alley.
  • by Indy1 (99447) <spamtrap@fuckedregime.com> on Friday July 22, 2005 @01:17AM (#13132597) Homepage
    the old slogan was "invent"

    the new slogan .....
    "merge, layoff, and go out of business"
  • by fbg111 (529550) on Friday July 22, 2005 @01:52AM (#13132753)
    For some interesting anecdotes involving Alan [folklore.org]
  • by crucini (98210) on Friday July 22, 2005 @03:00AM (#13132971)
    Do you think that any geek who achieves momentary fame should have a job for life? Don't you think an employee should be measured by the value he's contributing now?

    When I heard "Alan Kay" I remembered this load of whining. [fortune.com] Here's my comment on that [slashdot.org].

    I have more respect for people who actually get things done, like the Linux kernel contributors, than people who pontificate on the future of OO or whatever. Anyone claiming that HP should keep this guy because of his long-past accomplishments should have his head examined. HP should only retain people who help the company make money and move forward.
    • by jotaeleemeese (303437) on Friday July 22, 2005 @11:29AM (#13135654) Homepage Journal
      People like that are what keep alive your internal corporate culture.

      Those are the guys that tell you where no to set your foot because they did so before and found there was a bear trap.

      If you seriously are saying that HP can't find a place on their company for a guy that shaped a good part of software development carried out during the last 20 years, worldwide, then you and HP need to sit down and pause because you both are lunatics.

      People like these are few per generation. I am sure other more enlightened companies (like the ones mentioned on the thread), that are actually shapping the IT world will snap him if he still feels like working.

    • Do you think that any geek who achieves momentary fame should have a job for life?

      Yes.

      Don't you think an employee should be measured by the value he's contributing now?

      No.

      Next question? Maybe, Why?
  • by Junks Jerzey (54586) on Friday July 22, 2005 @09:21AM (#13134430)
    That honor goes to Ole-Johan Dahl and Kristen Nygaard, the designers of Simula. Simula had a strong effect on both Kay and Smalltalk.

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