Alan Cooper, who was born June 3, 1952, is recognized as “the father of Visual BASIC”, in addition to being a writing success in the field with books like About Face: The Essentials of Interaction Design and The Inmates Are Running the Asylum: Why High-Tech Products Drive Us Crazy and How to Restore the Sanity”. Cooper started from the time they began to emerge on personal computers, a business consulting and is the creator of the design methodology called “Directed goals”. It was the 28th of April 2017 when ase he was awarded as one of the most important characters in the world of computing, entering the hall of fame of the Museum of the History of Computing american.
Interestingly, Cooper did not study programming, but architecture. However, the world of bits and bytes already had plans for him. When there was availability of the first personal computers, Cooper started a company and sold in addition to products accounting for these machines. Is announced even in magazines like Byte and Interface Age. Ultimately Cooper developed a dozen products that are eventually sold along with your company, Structured Systems Group, in 1980.
It is striking that Cooper had studied architecture instead of computer, because somehow his professional preparation he did re-invent many ideas of computing modern. As Christopher Alexander, an architect, who created the idea of design patterns, Cooper developed a series of design methodologies that continue to be important in various areas of programming, particularly in the case of graphic interfaces.
In 1988, Alan Cooper created a visual programming language called “Ruby”(which has nothing to do with the current Ruby language), that allowed Windows users to create a series of programs in a simple way and using the generic interface of Windows. Then prove it in front of Bill Gates, Microsoft bought Ruby and even Gates said that “this innovation would have a profound effect,” which was true if you think of the development of a multitude of RAD (Rapid Application Development), which we now have.
It should be noted that Microsoft redesigned the tool of Cooper and marketed as so-called finally Visual BASIC, which was a great success because somehow she had a language known as BASIC, but now without line number, structured and with a graphical interface that made it more versatile.
On the other hand, beyond the BASIC a better tool for programming, invented the .VBX, which he called Cooper as “the components of Ruby”. This allowed third parties to develop controls in a DLL. The interface of Visual BASIC I saw it then as a component with capabilities visual or non-visual, depending on what is needed. The first book that came out of Visual BASIC was dedicated to Cooper (the author is Mitchell Waite) and who was the one who baptized him as the father of that language, thing that I end up being as a “curriculum in a single line”.
Alan Cooper is one of those programmers that perhaps many have gone unnoticed, but with his contributions to computing, have changed the way in as it makes the programming. The world of computing is not where it is at these moments by magic, but by the work of many years of many people who have made significant contributions that we see daily, and which seem to us now almost self-evident. Cooper is probably one of those characters that deserve to be better known for their developments. Are one of those people that leave their mark and in the computer what we know.