Charles Simonyi – It’s the closest yet to a Dane in space

Soyuz Tma-10 PatchCharles Simonyi is now in space

It’s almost like a Dane is going to space, since Charles Simonyi lived and worked in Denmark before being hired by Microsoft. He frequently visits Denmark in his Yacht Skat, and it’s impressive. I’ve seen Skat – docked at The Copenhagen Royal Castle – Amalienborg, like pictured in the link above. Skat is Danish for “treasure”, but “Skat” is normally used to express affection for your significant other, and it roughly translates to “darling” – it’s also a play on words, since “Skat” also means “Tax”.

Simonyi is best known – at least by g33k5 like me – for inventing the Hungarian notation – a special style of coding, where you indicate the datatype by prefixing the variable name with a type indicator, eg. nCount and intCount to indicate that Count is a variable that is declared as a number or an integer, szTitle to indicate that the variable szTitle is a zero-terminated string.

I’ve been using Hungarian notation since 1987, I believe that the Hungarian notation actually made C a usable language, and it has saved us from many bugs.

These days I still use Hungarian notation, even though it should not be nescessary in object oriented languages, and even Microsoft, that was instrumental in the spread of Hungarian notation, now discourages it’s use.

It’s an inspiration that someone working in my field can do these things, Charles Simonyi seems to be living my dream.

Godspeed Charles.

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