Charles H. Davidson

Early user's group leader who created one of the earliest "load-and-go" compilers for Fortran.

Davidson did his undergraduate work at the American University in Washington, D.C., and received both his MS and his PhD from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, all in physics. His thesis in 1952 involved the design and programming of a digital computer being built in the Department of Electrical Engineering there. In 1961 he organized the Engineering Computing Laboratory in the College of Engineering, and served as its director until 1981. Davidson played an active role in the early days of the 1620 Users Group, serving as chairman of the Midwest Region, and as the representative of its successor organization, Common, to the ASA Fortran standardization committees. In 1961 he supervised the design and development of FORGO, the first load-and-go Fortran compiler. He has participated in many activities within ACM, including serving two terms on the council, and as chairman of SIGCAS for four years. He recently retired as professor of electrical and computer engineering, professor of computer sciences, and assistant to the director of the Madison Academic Computing Center for Instructional Computing.



Davidson, Charles, "The Emergence of Load-and-Go Systems for Fortran," Ann. Hist. Comp., Vol. 6, No. 1, Jan. 1984, pp. 19-20.


Chrles Davidson died on Nov. 7, 2008 (THVV, 2021)

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