Charles Simonyi

Charles Simonyi ( born September 10, 1948 as Károly Simonyi in Budapest) is an American computer scientist. He has become known as the father of the so-called Hungarian notation, a convention for naming variables. Later, he played a leading role in the development of several Office programs from Microsoft. He made ​​headlines with his flights as a space tourist to the International Space Station (ISS) in April 2007 and March 2009.


Charles Simonyi was in 1948 in Hungary, the son of Károly Simonyi ( 1916-2001; professor of electrical and author of the standard works of Electromagnetic Theory and Cultural History of Physics) born. In 1966 he emigrated from Hungary. He first came to Denmark, worked a half years as a programmer in a data center in Copenhagen, and eventually moved to the United States. He studied at the University of California, Berkeley ( UCB) Technical Mathematics and earned a bachelor's degree in 1972.

Then followed his former Simonyi Professor Butler W. Lampson UCB temporarily to the Berkeley Computer Corporation, until both finally found a job in the research laboratory of the copier manufacturer Xerox in Palo Alto, California ( Xerox PARC ). Together with Lampson as the senior scientists of the Computer Science Laboratory developed Simonyi 1974, the word processing program Bravo. This editor ran on the Alto computer Xerox own and offered the first WYSIWYG capabilities. With Bravo text could be recorded and processed and displayed before printing as a graphic on the screen.

In addition to his Xerox activity continued Simonyi his studies. At Stanford University, he finished the subject computer science and a doctorate in 1977. His dissertation dealt with the development of his meta-programming. Thus, the development of computer programs should be made more effective by writing to parts of the software itself.

Simonyi remained for some years at Xerox before joining the fledgling software company Microsoft in 1981. IBM had just presented his first personal computer, which was equipped with the operating system MS- DOS from Microsoft. Simonyi adopted in the following year, the U.S. Citizenship and built Microsoft's developer group for application programs. Under his leadership, among other things, the first versions of spreadsheets Multiplan and Excel, and Word Processing Word emerged.

As of 1991 Simonyi built with Microsoft Research to the world's first department of a software company that operates its own basic research and now has 700 employees. Here he dealt with his concept of intentional programming. In 2002 he left the group to found the company Intentional Software to realize the idea of intentional programming.

In May 1995, Simonyi donated Oxford University a sum of £ 1.5 million to establish a chair. This should help to expand the scientific understanding of the public inside and outside the university. On request Simonyi Richard Dawkins should accept this at the Museum of Natural History -based professor. Until his retirement in 2008, the British zoologist was entitled " Charles Simonyi Professor of the Public Understanding of Science".

Space Tourist

In April 2006, Simonyi announced his intention to try to fly as a space tourist to the International Space Station (ISS). It was launched on April 7, 2007 aboard Soyuz TMA -10 and landed after two weeks stay on the ISS on 21 April 2007 with the Soyuz TMA- ninth

The start of his second journey through space with the Soyuz TMA -14 was on 26 March 2009. Simonyi This was the first space tourist, who carried out a second flight. The landing took place on 8 April 2009 with Soyuz TMA- 13th


Simonyi datete since the 90 years of Martha Stewart, married in November 2008, but suddenly half as old Swede Lisa Persdotter (28). He has two daughters.

Simonyi's fortune is estimated at 1.1 billion U.S. dollars. In the world ranking of billionaires by Forbes Magazine in 2008 he took a course in 1014.

Pictures of Charles Simonyi