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Ken Thompson

1943 - Today

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Kenneth Lane Thompson (born February 4, 1943) is an American pioneer of computer science. Thompson worked at Bell Labs for most of his career where he designed and implemented the original Unix operating system. He also invented the B programming language, the direct predecessor to the C programming language, and was one of the creators and early developers of the Plan 9 operating system. Read more on Wikipedia

Since 2007, the English Wikipedia page of Ken Thompson has received more than 2,005,256 page views. His biography is available in 55 different languages on Wikipedia. Ken Thompson is the 19th most popular computer scientist (down from 13th in 2019), the 1,393rd most popular biography from United States (down from 1,224th in 2019) and the 11th most popular American Computer Scientist.

Ken Thompson is most famous for inventing the Unix operating system.

Memorability Metrics

  • 2.0M

    Page Views (PV)

  • 59.93

    Historical Popularity Index (HPI)

  • 55

    Languages Editions (L)

  • 4.39

    Effective Languages (L*)

  • 5.05

    Coefficient of Variation (CV)

Page views of Ken Thompsons by language


Among computer scientists, Ken Thompson ranks 19 out of 201Before him are Larry Page, Sergey Brin, Vint Cerf, Edgar F. Codd, Andrew S. Tanenbaum, and Ray Kurzweil. After him are Dorothy Vaughan, Marvin Minsky, Guido van Rossum, Alan Kay, John Backus, and Ward Cunningham.

Most Popular Computer Scientists in Wikipedia

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Among people born in 1943, Ken Thompson ranks 91Before him are Chantal Mouffe, Max Wright, Lyudmila Ulitskaya, Holland Taylor, Antonio Inoki, and Conchata Ferrell. After him are Maktoum bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Alain de Benoist, Piet Keizer, Jean-Claude Killy, Edie Sedgwick, and Michael Palin.

Others Born in 1943

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In United States

Among people born in United States, Ken Thompson ranks 1,393 out of 18,182Before him are Joseph Hooton Taylor Jr. (1941), Mary Todd Lincoln (1818), John Sturges (1910), Wes Anderson (1969), Richard Winters (1918), and David Morse (1953). After him are Alan Greenspan (1926), Herbert Blomstedt (1927), Walter Chrysler (1875), Bob Saget (1956), Cecil B. DeMille (1881), and Rose Kennedy (1890).


Among computer scientists born in United States, Ken Thompson ranks 11Before him are George Dantzig (1914), John McCarthy (1927), Larry Page (1973), Vint Cerf (1943), Andrew S. Tanenbaum (1944), and Ray Kurzweil (1948). After him are Dorothy Vaughan (1910), Marvin Minsky (1927), Alan Kay (1940), John Backus (1924), Ward Cunningham (1949), and Jef Raskin (1943).