Alain Colmerauer

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Alain Colmerauer
Born (1941-01-24) 24 January 1941 (age 75)
Carcassonne, France
Thesis Precedences, analyse syntaxique et langages de programmation (1967)
Doctoral advisor Louis Bolliet, Jean Kuntzman
Known for Prolog
Spouse Colette Coursaget
Children 3

Alain Colmerauer (born 24 January 1941 in Carcassonne) is a French computer scientist and the creator of the logic programming language Prolog.


After completing his Ph.D. at the Ensimag of Grenoble, he spent 1967–1970 as Assistant Professor at the University of Montreal, where he created Q-Systems, one of the earliest linguistic formalisms used in the development of the TAUM-METEO machine translation prototype.

In 1984, he created the company PrologIA to exploit the development of Prolog III. He is also one of the main founders of the field of Constraint logic programming.

Alain Colmerauer moved to the University of Aix-Marseille at Luminy in 1970 as Professeur 2ème classe (Associate Professor). He was promoted in 1979 to Professeur 1ère classe (Full Professor), and in 1988 to Professeur classe exceptionnelle (University Professor). In 2000 he became Professeur classe exceptionnelle at the Faculty of Sciences of Luminy, University II of Aix-Marseille, Institut Universitaire de France, becoming Emeritus Professor in 2006. From 1993 to 1995, he was Head of the Laboratoire d’Informatique de Marseille (LIM), a joint laboratory of the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, the University de Provence and the University de la Mediterranee.

Honors and awards[edit]

In 1982, Alain Colmerauer shared with Henry Kanoui and Michel Van Caneghem la Pomme d’Or du Logiciel Francais, an award from Apple France for the Prolog II implementation. In 1984, he received an award by the Conseil Regional of Provence, Alpes and Côte d’Azur, and in 1985 the Michel Monpetit Award, from the French Academy of Sciences. In 1986, he was made Chevalier de la Legion d’Honneur by the French government. He became Fellow of the American Association for Artificial Intelligence in 1991, and received the ACP Research Excellence Award, Principles and Practice of Constraint Programming in 2008. He is also a Correspondent of the French Academy of Sciences in the area of Mathematics.


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