Arthur Whitney (computer scientist)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

Arthur Whitney is a Canadian computer scientist most notable for developing the APL-inspired programming languages A+ and K.[1]

He studied pure mathematics at graduate level at the University of Toronto (Canada) in the early 1980s.[2] He then worked at Stanford University (California, USA). He worked extensively with APL, first at I. P. Sharp Associates alongside Ken Iverson and Roger Hui, and later at Morgan Stanley developing financial applications. At Morgan Stanley, Whitney helped to develop A+ to facilitate the migration of APL applications from IBM mainframes to a network of Sun workstations. A+ had a smaller set of primitive functions and was designed for speed and to handle large sets of time series data.

In 1993, Whitney left Morgan Stanley and developed the first version of the K language. At the same time he co-founded Kx Systems to commercialize the product.

He also wrote the initial prototype of J, a terse and macro-heavy single page of code, in one afternoon, which then served as the model for J implementor Roger Hui, and was responsible for suggesting the rank operators in J.[3]

Currently he is the Chairman of the Board of Kx Systems.[1]


  1. ^ a b An Interview with Arthur Whitney, Kx CEO and Developer of Kx Technology, Kx Systems, January 4, 2004.
  2. ^ A Conversation with Arthur Whitney, ACM Queue, April 20, 2009.
  3. ^ Iverson, K. E. (1991), "A personal view of APL", IBM Systems Journal 30 (4): 582–593, doi:10.1147/sj.304.0582 .

External links[edit]