Walter Bright

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Walter Bright
Bright at ACCU 2009
Born (1959-03-10) March 10, 1959 (age 64)
EducationCaltech (BS, 1979)
Known forD (programming language)
SpouseTrish Bright[1]

Walter G. Bright (born March 10, 1959) is an American computer programmer who created the D programming language,[2][3] the Zortech C++ compiler, and the Empire computer game.

Early life and education[edit]

Bright is the son of the United States Air Force pilot Charles D. Bright.[4][5] He taught himself computer programming from the type-in programs in BASIC Computer Games.[6]

Bright graduated from Caltech in 1979 with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering and a minor in Aeronautical Engineering.[7][8] While at university he wrote the Empire wargame for the PDP-10 mainframe, completing it in 1977.[9]


Bright wrote Mattel Intellivision games while at Caltech, then worked as a mechanical engineer after graduation. After learning C in the early 1980s he ported Empire to the IBM PC, stating that C "might as well have been called EIL, for 'Empire Implementation Language.'"[9] Bright developed the Datalight C compiler, also sold as Zorland C and later Zortech C.[10]

Bright was the main developer of the Zortech C++ compiler (later Symantec C++, now Digital Mars C++), which was the first C++ compiler to translate source code directly to object code without using C as an intermediate.[11]

D programming language[edit]

Bright is the creator of the D programming language. He has implemented compilers for several other languages, and is considered an expert in many areas related to compiler technology.[12] Walter regularly writes scientific and magazine articles about compilers and programming[13] and was a blogger for Dr. Dobb's Journal.[14]

Around 2014, Bright wrote Warp, a fast C/C++ preprocessor written in D, for Facebook.[15][16][2]


  1. ^ Bengel, Erick (2016-06-30). "Museum of Whimsy Shares Its Treasures". The Daily Astorian. p. 1. Archived from the original on 2021-09-26. Retrieved 2021-09-26.
  2. ^ a b Cade Metz (7 July 2014). "The Next Big Programming Language You've Never Heard Of". Wired.
  3. ^ "Ruminations on D: An Interview with Walter Bright". 30 August 2016.
  4. ^ Bright, Walter (2021). "on: The Complexity of a WW II P-47 Thunderbolt's Powerplant".
  5. ^ "The Jetmakers".
  6. ^ Bright, Walter (2021-09-18). "Basic Computer Games (1978)". Hacker News. Retrieved 2021-09-27.
  7. ^ Bright, Walter; Alexandrescu, Andrei; Parker, Michael (June 2020). "Origins of the D Programming Language". Proceedings of the ACM on Programming Languages. 4 (HOPL): 1. doi:10.1145/3386323.
  8. ^ Bright, Walter (2020). "on: An aerospace engineer explains fireworks".
  9. ^ a b Bright, Walter (2000). "A Brief History of Empire". Walter Bright's Empire website.
  10. ^ Johnston, Stuart (Jun 10, 1991). "Zortech Simplifies 32-Bit DOS with C++ Compilers". InfoWorld. Vol. 13, no. 23. Menlo Park, CA: InfoWorld Publishing. p. 22. ISSN 0199-6649. "said Walter Bright, Zortech's directory of technology
  11. ^ Loder, Wolfgang (26 November 2016). "Introduction". Erlang and Elixir for Imperative Programmers. Apress. p. xvii. ISBN 9781484223949.
  12. ^ "Lang.NEXT 2012 Expert Panel: Native Languages" Lang.Next
  13. ^ "The D Programming Language Conference 2017". D Language Foundation. 2017. Archived from the original on 2020-08-15. Retrieved 2021-09-26.
  14. ^ Binstock, Andrew (2014-12-16). "Farewell, Dr. Dobb's". Dr. Dobb's Journal. Archived from the original on 2021-09-26. Retrieved 2021-09-26.
  15. ^ Larabel, Michael (2014-03-31). "Warp: Facebook Open-Sources A Super Fast C/C++ Pre-Processor". Phoronix. Archived from the original on 2020-11-24. Retrieved 2021-09-26.
  16. ^ Alexandrescu, Andrei (2014-03-28). "Under the Hood: warp, a fast C and C++ preprocessor". Facebook. Archived from the original on 2021-03-05. Retrieved 2021-09-26.

External links[edit]