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IBM conducted yearly employee reviews called the "Performance Improvement Program" or Pip, for short. The Pip, like most such programs today, followed a rigid formula, with numbers and rankings. [John] Backus decided the Pip system was ill suited for measuring the performance of his programmers, so his approach was to mostly ignore it. One afternoon, for example, he called Lois Haibt over for a chat. He talked about her work, said she had been doing an excellent job and then pushed a small piece of paper across the desk saying, "This is your new salary," a pleasing raise, as Haibt recalled. As she got up to leave, Backus mentioned in passing, "In case anyone should ask, this was your Pip."
Since he starts early in the history of the field, Lohr gets to share some of the oddities of the days before programming was professionalised. Developers were kids, musicians, game experts, and practically anyone who showed an interest. Many readers will be surprised and delighted to read of the strong recruitment of women and their many contributions to software development--an aspect of geek history, which has long been neglected. Go To should break down a few preconceptions while building up a new respect for the coders who guided us into the 21st century. --Rob Lightner --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.--This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
This book could have been better edited and better organized, but it is still worth reading. "GO TO" (which probably should have been called "goto" or... Read morePublished on Feb. 12 2004 by Nathan Moore
This book ranks among the best in the history of technology and one of the few that specifically addresses software. Read morePublished on Dec 22 2003 by Gaunilon
"Hitchhiker's Guide to the _Universe_"?
" ... because 31 in octal is 25 in decimal." instead of " ... because OCT 31 == DEC 25"? Read more
This book gives a detailed history of the development of IT industry since 1950. From Fortran, Cobol, C, Visual Basic, C++, Java to HTML, UNIX, .... Read morePublished on May 12 2002 by Donald Hsu
The best thing I can say about this book is that it is relatively short. Lohr profiles a dozen or so software pioneers. Why does he pick some and not others? Read morePublished on March 18 2002
As a lifelong software developer, avid history buff, and now, author, I looked forward to this book, as it combines the two great loves of my life - code and history. Read morePublished on Feb. 17 2002 by Michael F. Maddox
Covers a lot of ground in a very shallow way, without any overarching theme or thesis. A few interesting tidbits about a lot of people, written in that journalistic style that has... Read morePublished on Feb. 14 2002 by Jessica Weissman
This book contains a remarkable set of stories about about truly important innovations in the field of software. The stories are lucidly constructed. Read morePublished on Feb. 11 2002 by Steven Miller