Silicon Valley icon and Cut, Copy and Paste inventor Larry Tesler has died at the age of 74.
Larry Tesler started working in
Silicon Valley in the early 1960s, at a time when computers were inaccessible
to the vast majority of people.
It was thanks to Tesler’s
innovations – which included the “cut”, “copy” and
“paste” commands – that the personal computer became simple to learn
Xerox, where Larry Tesler spent part
of his career, paid tribute to him.
The company tweeted: “The inventor of cut/copy & paste,
find & replace, and more, was former Xerox researcher Larry Tesler.
“Your workday is easier thanks to his revolutionary
Larry Tesler was born in the Bronx,
New York, in 1945, and studied at Stanford University in California.
After graduating, he specialized in
user interface design – that is, making computer systems more user-friendly.
Larry Tesler worked for a number of major tech firms during his long career. He started at Xerox Palo Alto Research Center (Parc), before Steve Jobs poached him for Apple, where he spent 17 years and rose to chief scientist.
After leaving Apple, Larry Tesler
set up an education start-up, and worked for brief periods at Amazon and Yahoo.
Possibly his most famous innovation, the cut and paste command, was reportedly
based on the old method of editing in which people would physically cut
portions of printed text and glue them elsewhere.
The command was incorporated in Apple’s software on the Lisa computer in
1983, and the original Macintosh that was released the following year.
One of Larry Tesler’s firmest beliefs was that computer systems should stop
using “modes”, which were common in software design at the time.
Modes allow users to switch between functions on software and apps but make
computers both time-consuming and complicated.
So strong was this belief that Larry Tesler’s website was called
“nomodes.com”, his Twitter handle was “@nomodes”, and even
his car’s registration plate was “No Modes”.
Robert Goldberg wrote: “It’s with incredible shock and sadness that I’m letting our friends and family know that my amazing brother, Dave Goldberg, beloved husband of Sheryl Sandberg, father of two wonderful children, and son of Paula Goldberg, passed away suddenly last night.”
Under Dave Goldberg, SurveyMonkey grew from a handful of employees to more than 450 and acquired 25 million customers.
Dave Goldberg’s fortunes was closely linked to those of Silicon Valley – a media company founded by him, Launch Media, was taken over by Yahoo in 2001, just after the “dotcom bubble” burst.
Billionaire Tom Perkins has apologized for comparing a row about free buses for tech workers in Silicon Valley to the persecution of the Jews in Nazi Germany.
It follows a month of protests in San Francisco over what some residents see as the negative impact of tech workers.
In an open letter to the Wall Street Journal, Tom Perkins described a “rising tide of hatred” of the rich.
His comments were criticized on Twitter.
In the letter, Tom Perkins said: “I would call attention to the parallels of fascist Nazi Germany to its war on its <<1%>>, namely its Jews, to the progressive war on the American 1%, namely the <<rich>>.
“This is a very dangerous drift in our American thinking. Kristallnacht was unthinkable in 1930; is its descendant “progressive” radicalism unthinkable now?”
He later said he regretted using the word Kristallnacht but his message about a new type of class warfare remained true.
Tom Perkins has apologized for comparing a row about free buses for tech workers in Silicon Valley to the persecution of the Jews in Nazi Germany
Kristallnacht – also referred to as night of broken glass – was a series of attacks against Jews in November 1938.
Tom Perkins, who headed up venture capitalist firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers before his retirement, was condemned by his old firm, which tweeted: “We were shocked by his views… and do not agree.”
The protests over the way tech workers commute to their jobs began in December when a bus taking people to Google’s campus had its window smashed by activists.
Similar protests have been held at bus stops around the city, with protesters complaining an influx of rich technology workers is driving up costs in the city.
The buses have become a symbol of such gentrification.
“Big tech exploits San Francisco’s cultural diversity and public infrastructure to lure workers here,” said the Heart of the City collective, which has organized the protests, in its own open letter also published this week.
“Real estate speculators capitalize on the influx of high-wage earners by evicting long-time residents to rent units at inflated rates, commanding up to 20% more around tech shuttle stops,” it added.
It is demanding that tech companies fund affordable housing initiatives and public transit service improvements.
The tech firms based in Silicon Valley, including Google, Twitter and Apple, use the buses to take about 17,000 people to and from the area each day.
Those behind the scheme say such buses ease congestion on already clogged roads in the city.
To ease the tensions, San Francisco’s transport agency has imposed fees and restrictions on the shuttle buses. The bus operators will have to pay $1 per stop per shuttle, netting an average of between $80,000 and $100,000 per operator each year.
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