Legendary Programmer Dies for the Second Time For Some High Profile Tech Luminaries

Tech luminaries laud Legendary Programmer, Dennis Ritchie … 5 years after death

Sometimes it seems that tech big shots live in their own world. If you are following some of these tech luminaries you will find that they are paying tribute this evening to computing pioneer Dennis Ritchie.

Dennis Ritchie is a true pioneer of tech. It would not be out of place to say that the laptops and PCs that we use today is because of  Dennis Ritchie. The New-York born pioneer was among the early Bell Labs alumni and is credited with both creating the C programming language and co-developing Unix that powers much of tech today.

Unfortunately for the tech biggies mourning him today,  he actually died five years ago.

Ritchie was an internationally renowned computer scientist who created the C programming language. He also made significant contributions to the development of the Unix operating system, for which he received the Turing Award in 1983.

However, tech wizards like Google’s CEO Sundar Pichai seem to be too engrossed in their work to know this basic fact. Sundar tweeted out Wired’s five-year-old obituary on Ritchie, thanking him for his “immense contributions.”

"immense contributions."

Om Malik, a partner at True Ventures and the founder of tech site GigaOm, retweeted Pichai’s tribute before soon recognizing his mistake and tweeting an apology for “adding to the confusion and noise.”

What followed was kind of a RIP orgy with Craig Newmark, founder of the popular online bulletin board Craigslist tweeting “this guy made a huge contribution to the world.” He was followed by many more who seemed to forget that Ritchie died five years ago and would be squirming in grave seeing the second set of condolence messages he was getting.

With all due respect to Ritchie, the tweeps following these tech big shots were just playing follow the leader and tweeting out obits without trying to find out the truth. It’s sad that nobody from the tech world remembered that Ritchie died five years ago at his home in Berkeley Heights, NJ after a long fight against prostate cancer and heart disease.

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