Rob Pike on Newsqueak

Rob Pike is an interesting guy. Formerly Bell Labs researcher, now at Google, Rob Pike has not only done more innovative and development in operating systems and programming languages than I can shake a stick at, he’s also built telescopes, appeared on Late Night with David Letterman, and was the 1980 Olympic Silver Medalist in archery for Team Canada. What I find compelling about his work is his ability to think outside the current paradigms offered current operating systems (mostly Unix or worse) and current languages (mostly C++ and Java or worse) and see what we could really do.

In the video below, he dusts off some work on the interesting language Newsqueak, which had many good and innovative ideas which were not widely adopted in successive language designs. This is part of Google’s lecture series on programming languages. Enjoy.

Advanced Topics in Programming Languages: Concurrency/message passing Newsqueak

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Addendum: Here’s Rob’s page at Google, which has links to many of his papers.