Long-time S/38 and AS/400 users may be fortunate enough to remember
Dick Bains, either from working with him in Rochester or Toronto, or
through his many appearances at COMMON.
Dick was truly one of the fathers of the S/38 and AS/400 - being
heavily involved in the compilers for many years. Once the compilers
had transitioned to Toronto, Dick was actively involved in the
performance arena (among many others) and was also the driving force
behind the updated sort API and the corresponding COBOL support.
When I worked on the compiler teams, Dick was a good friend and did a
lot to help me break into the arcane world of compiler construction.
There were many of the more sophisticated aspects of the COBOL
compiler in particular that I don't think any of us could have made
our way through without Dick's help. He was one of the most brilliant
people I've ever been fortunate enough to work with. Just an hour
with Dick could leave me gasping for breath and wondering how I'd ever
absorb it all - and to be honest I don't think I ever did.
Dick died of a heart attack around 7:30 Saturday evening Dec. 13,
2008. He was visiting at his son's in Wisconsin.
For those who would like to send condolences, you can reach Dick's
wife Roxi at roxi@xxxxxxxxx
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