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Douglas Crockford

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Employer  PayPal
Known for  JSON
Role  Computer programmer
Name  Douglas Crockford

Douglas Crockford httpsavatars2githubusercontentcomu262641v
Alma mater  San Francisco State University
Occupation  Senior JavaScript Architect
Education  San Francisco State University
Books  JavaScript: The Good Parts
Similar People  Peter Thiel, Brian Kernighan, Yukihiro Matsumoto, Simon Peyton Jones, Tim Bray

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Douglas Crockford is an American computer programmer and entrepreneur who is best known for his ongoing involvement in the development of the JavaScript language, for having popularized the data format JSON (JavaScript Object Notation), and for developing various JavaScript related tools such as JSLint and JSMin. He is currently a senior JavaScript architect at PayPal, and is also a writer and speaker on JavaScript, JSON, and related web technologies.


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Crockford earned a degree in Radio and Television from San Francisco State University in 1975. He took classes in FORTRAN and worked with a university lab's computer.


Crockford purchased an Atari 8-bit computer in 1980 and wrote the game Galahad and the Holy Grail for the Atari Program Exchange (APX), which resulted in Chris Crawford hiring him at Atari, Inc. While at Atari, Crockford wrote another game, Burgers!, for APX and a number of experimental audio/visual demos that were freely distributed.

After Warner Communications sold the company he joined National Semiconductor. In 1984 Crockford joined Lucasfilm, and later Paramount Pictures. He became known on video game oriented listservs in the early 1990s after he posted his memoir "The Expurgation of Maniac Mansion" to a videogaming bulletin board. The memoir documented his efforts to censor the computer game Maniac Mansion to Nintendo's satisfaction so that they could release it as a cartridge, and Crockford's mounting frustrations as Nintendo's demands became more obscure and confusing.

Together with Randy Farmer and Chip Morningstar, Crockford founded Electric Communities and was its CEO from 1994 to 1995. He was involved in the development of the programming language E.

Crockford was the founder of State Software (also known as Veil Networks) and its CTO from 2001 to 2002.

During his time at State Software, Crockford popularized the JSON data format, based upon existing JavaScript language constructs, as a lightweight alternative to XML. He obtained the domain name in 2002, and put up his description of the format there. In July 2006, he specified the format officially, as RFC 4627.

"Good, not Evil"

In 2002, in reference to President George Bush's war on "evildoers", Crockford started releasing his JSMin software under a custom license, which he created by adding the requirement "The Software shall be used for Good, not Evil" to the open source MIT License. This clause was carried over to JSMin-PHP, a variation of JSMin by Ryan Grove. This software was hosted on Google Code until December 2009 when, due to the additional clause, Google determined that the license was not compliant with the definition of free and open source software, which does not permit any restriction on how software may be used. JSMin-PHP was forced to migrate to a new hosting provider.


Douglas Crockford Wikipedia