IRL Name: 
Malcolm Douglas McIlroy

Malcolm Douglas McIlroy is a mathematician, engineer, and programmer who was born on 1932. He created Unix commands: spell, diff, sort, join, graph, speak, tr. He had a good fortune to head the research department at Bell Labs in which Unix was born. While at Bell Labs he is known for working on:

- Languages and compilers: macros, Lisp, PL/I, TMG (a compiler-compiler), regular expressions; influenced Snobol, Altran, C++
- Documentation: making Unix manuals short and accurate
- Stream processing: Unix pipes, classic coroutine sieve, power series
- Storage allocation theory and practice; first conservative garbage collector


He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering, and has won both the USENIX Lifetime Achievement Award ("The Flame") and its Software Tools award.

He is attributed the quote "The real hero of programming is the one who writes negative code", where the meaning of negative code is taken to be similar to famous Apple developer team anecdote.

Inventor of pipes

He retired from Bell Labs in 1997, and serves as an Adjunct Professor in the Dartmouth College Computer Science Department.