Edsger Dijkstra Quotes

Testing can be used to show the presence of bugs, but never to show their absence!

This principle is very important in all kinds of human activity. We design and test or pilot test products and programs of all kinds—governmental and not. The testing may uncover a flaw or problem, but the failure to find flaws or problems does NOT mean that they are not inherent in the program—they may well be there and have not been uncovered by the tests. Often when this occurs, we refer to them as “unintended consequences.”

Edsger Dijkstra, 1930-2002, Dutch computer scientist, Notes On Structured Programming, 1972

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Edsger Dijkstra
Edsger Dijkstra
  • Born: May 11, 1930
  • Died: August 6, 2002
  • Nationality: Dutch
  • Profession: Computer Scientist

Edsger Wybe Dijkstra was a Dutch systems scientist, programmer, software engineer, science essayist, and early pioneer in computing science. A theoretical physicist by training, he worked as a programmer at the Mathematisch Centrum (Amsterdam) from 1952 to 1962. A university professor for much of his life, Dijkstra held the Schlumberger Centennial Chair in Computer Sciences at the University of Texas at Austin from 1984 until his retirement in 1999. He was a professor of mathematics at the Eindhoven University of Technology (1962–1984) and a research fellow at the Burroughs Corporation (1973–1984).

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