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Steve Yegge

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Title: Steve Yegge  
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Steve Yegge

Steve Yegge is a programmer and blogger who is known for writing about programming languages, productivity and software culture.[1] He received a bachelor's degree in computer science from the University of Washington[2] and has two decades of industry experience, developing across domains including embedded operating systems, scalable e-commerce systems, applications for mobile devices, and software productivity tools. In his career he has worked for and Google among others.[1]


In 2007, Yegge was a speaker at the UIUC 13th annual reflections❘projections Conference.[1] In May 2008, Yegge presented a talk on dynamic languages at Stanford University.[3] In July 2007, Yegge was a presenter at OSCON 2007, presenting a keynote speech on "How to Ignore Marketing and Become Irrelevant in Two Easy Steps".[4][5]

Server-side JavaScript

Yegge is well known for advocating server-side JavaScript for development.[6] After failing to convince Google to adopt Ruby on Rails, he ported Rails to JavaScript, creating the "Rhino on Rails" project.[7][8] In 2008, Yegge was interviewed for the Google Code Blog and discussed the "Rhino on Rails" project.[9] His work on "Rhino on Rails" has inspired at least one open-source clone, LatteJS.[10]



Yegge's blog has received considerable attention, particularly his series of posts on hiring and interviewing.[11][12][13][14][15]

In addition to his posts on hiring and interviewing, Yegge's Lisp is Not an Acceptable Lisp post about the Lisp programming language has been widely discussed and cited.[16][17][18][19][20]

Other programmers—including Paul Bissex, the co-author of "Python Web Development with Django"—have described Yegge's blog as "required reading".[21]

Accidental posting

Yegge accidentally made an internal Google memo public on Google+ in October 2011. His 3,700-word comment garnered major media and blogger attention for Yegge's pointed commentary criticizing the leanings of the company's technological culture (such as labeling Google+'s minimalist and, in his view, lackluster public platform "a pathetic afterthought") as well as for his comments about his former employer, Amazon (such as calling Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos "Dread Pirate Bezos"). Google cofounder Sergey Brin stated that he would still have his job.[22] Washington Post reporter Melissa Bell stated that Yegge's public rant was a Jerry Maguire moment.[23][24]

A Business Insider article highlighted these internal criticisms by Yegge:[24]

  • "That one last thing that Google doesn't do well is Platforms. We don't understand platforms. We don't "get" platforms. Some of you do, but you are the minority. This has become painfully clear to me over the past six years. I was kind of hoping that competitive pressure from Microsoft and Amazon and more recently Facebook would make us wake up collectively and start doing universal services. Not in some sort of ad hoc, half-assed way, but in more or less the same way Amazon did it: all at once, for real, no cheating, and treating it as our top priority from now on."
  • "We don't have a Steve Jobs here. I'm sorry, but we don't."
  • "We built a successful product with broad appeal- our search, that is- and that wild success has biased us."


Yegge released the graphical MUD Wyvern in 2001 through his company Cabochon Inc.[25]


Steve Yegge has been cited by many notable figures within the broader programming community, including Stuart Halloway who said: "And I am an enthusiast of Paul Graham and Steve Yegge and other folks that have evangelized Lisp to the rest of the developer community over the years."[26] and Don Box who referred to one of Steve's blog posts from his own blog: "Had this just been another installment in the GNU-vs-XEmacs soap opera, there'd be nothing to see here. Sandwiched between this however are some observations that I think are relevant to anyone who writes programs (start reading from “the dubious future of emacs“). It's hard to argue with the value of self-hosting. It's even harder to argue with the momentum of the browser and dynamic environments."


  1. ^ a b c "Reflections | Projections 2007 : Speakers". Retrieved 2010-12-07. 
  2. ^
  3. ^ "Stanford University Computer Systems LaboratoryEE380 Colloquium ScheduleAcademic Year 2007–2008". Retrieved 2010-12-07. 
  4. ^ "OSCON 2007 - Steve Yegge". Retrieved 2010-12-07. 
  5. ^ "IT Conversations | Open Source Conference from O'Reilly Media | Steve Yegge". 2007-07-26. Retrieved 2010-12-07. 
  6. ^ "Steve Yegge on Server Side JavaScript". Ajaxian. 2008-06-16. Retrieved 2010-12-07. 
  7. ^ "Steve Yegge Ports Rails to Javascript/Rhino". InfoQ. Retrieved 2010-12-07. 
  8. ^ Atwood, Jeff. "Podcast #50 - Blog – Stack Overflow". Retrieved 2010-12-07. 
  9. ^ Almaer, Dion (2008-01-29). "Google Code Blog: Interview with Steve Yegge on Rhino on Rails and more". Retrieved 2010-12-07. 
  10. ^ "esh/latte". GitHub. 2010-08-02. Retrieved 2010-12-07. 
  11. ^ "Steve Yegge on Interviewing | John Lam on Software". 2008-04-25. Retrieved 2010-12-07. 
  12. ^ "Tim Hoolihan » Thinking About Steve Yegge’s Hiring Post". 2008-11-24. Retrieved 2010-12-07. 
  13. ^ "Why I Would Never Hire Steve Yegge - Agile Management". Noop.Nl. 2008-03-13. Retrieved 2010-12-07. 
  14. ^ "BadMagicNumber » My Google Interview". 2008-11-24. Retrieved 2010-12-07. 
  15. ^ "Computer Science questions during interview?". Stack Overflow. Retrieved 2010-12-07. 
  16. ^ chanson April 15th, 2006 (2006-04-15). "Chris Hanson - Steve Yegge describes what's wrong with Lisp". Retrieved 2010-12-07. 
  17. ^ "Is Clojure An Acceptable Lisp?". 2009-02-05. Retrieved 2010-12-07. 
  18. ^ "Eli Bendersky’s website » Blog Archive » The sad state of the Lisp user community". 2006-10-27. Retrieved 2010-12-07. 
  19. ^ By Karl on June 13, 2009 10:04 PM (2009-06-13). "Getting Lisp". paradox1x. Retrieved 2010-12-07. 
  20. ^ Leon Bambrick. "The Truth About Lisp". Retrieved 2010-12-07. 
  21. ^ "E-Scribe News : Required reading: Steve Yegge". 2006-03-06. Retrieved 2010-12-07. 
  22. ^ Hernandez, Barbara E. (2011-10-20). "Google's Sergey Brin: Steve Yegge Not Fired, But He's a Windbag". NBC Bay Area. Retrieved 2012-08-15. 
  23. ^ Bell, Melissa (2011-10-14). "Google engineer Steve Yegge has his Jerry Maguire moment". The Washington Post. 
  24. ^ a b Ellis Hamburger (2011-10-12). "Here's Why Google+ Is Failing, And How We Can Start 'Doing This Right' - Business Insider". Retrieved 2012-08-15. 
  25. ^ "Creation of Wyvern". Archived from the original on 2003-06-02. Retrieved 2010-07-23. 
  26. ^ "Stuart Halloway on Clojure and Functional Programming". InfoQ. Retrieved 2010-12-07. 

External links

  • Steve Yegge's blog
  • Steve Yegge's MMORPG at the Wayback Machine (archived March 3, 2011)
  • Steve Yegge's internal Amazon blog
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