National Obituary Review

Dead Person of the Day – April 18 – Edgar Codd

0 Comments 18 April 2013


Today’s DPD is a wonderfully brilliant and underrated figure in the history of just about everything over the past 60+ years.

Edgar Codd.

While working at IBM in the 50s and 60s he developed the theory for what is called relational databases. That might not mean very much for the stiffs down the hall at The Shade but relational databases empowers those perverts to search for such things as ‘people with their pants down looking stupid’ and get a spot on hit.

You see prior to Codd’s invention the internet looking like Zoroaster puked data in one big bucket. It was tough to sift through and actually find what you want. Codd enabled databases to cross-reference tables of data, allowing the information to be presented in multiple permutations.

Sadly, at the time IBM was focused on creating different types of databases and cast Codd’s work into the shit bin. It wasn’t until the late 70s until IBM’s new leadership embraced the approach. By that point a Silicon Valley entrepreneur had used used Codd’s academic papers to further develop the theory which eventually served as the basis for the company now known as Oracle.

All this basically means Codd helped us harness the power of the internet and created technology still heavily used today and received diddly squat for it.


Edgar F. Codd, 79, Dies; Key Theorist of Databases


Published: April 23, 2003
Edgar F. Codd, a mathematician and computer scientist who laid the theoretical foundation for relational databases, the standard method by which information is organized in and retrieved from computers, died on Friday at his home in Williams Island, Fla. He was 79. Continue

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