Sandeep Purao’s Blog

November 18, 2007

The most important software innovations

Filed under: Innovation,Research,Software — sandeep @ 7:24 am

A captivating catalog of software innovations over time from David Wheeler that includes, among others:

  • Babbage’s analytical engine, Boole’s algebra, Turing machines and von Neumann’s stored program concept
  • Bush and Nelson’s Hypertext, Structured programming, Dahl and Nygaard’s Object-oriented programming, Codd’s Relational model and structured query languages,
  • Word processors from IBM (and its later evolution into Rubenstein and Barnaby’s Wordstar), and Bricklin and Bob Frankston’s spreadsheets
  • Dijkstra’s semaphores, Parnas’s modularity criteria, Hoare’s Communicating sequential processes, and Model-View-Controller from Alan Kay and others at Xerox
  • Distributed hypertext via simple mechanisms from Berner-Lee, and Skrenta’s Computer virus
  • Goldfarb, Mosher, and Lorie’s SGML as a precursor to XML
  • Grune’s lockless version management (CVS)

It appears that there is room for some of the service-based innovations in the list over the last several years including but not limited to Fielding’s REST services.

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