Bertrand Meyer, the designer of the Eiffel programming language (and founder of Eiffel Software, which sells development tools) has just been recognized by the ACM with its 2006 Software System Award.

The citation reads,

“For designing and developing the Eiffel programming language, method and environment, embodying the Design by Contract approach to software development and other features that facilitate the construction of reliable, extendible and efficient software.”

While I wouldn’t call Eiffel an overwhelming commercial success, the object-oriented language’s influence on software development has been profound. Similarly, Meyer has been at the center of interesting debates, especially around Design by Contract. Last year, the Eiffel language became ISO/IEC Standard 25436:2006.

In addition to his work at Eiffel Software, Meyer is a professor of software engineering at the ETH in Zurich.

I haven’t spoken to Meyer for several years, but have always enjoyed our conversations — perhaps this award will help us find the opportunity to chat again soon.

Z Trek Copyright (c) Alan Zeichick