Fernando Corbató

Updated: 09/15/2017 by Computer Hope

Fernando CorbatoName: Fernando (Corby) José Corbató

Born: July 1, 1926 in Oakland, California USA

Computer related contributions

  • American computer scientist, notable as a pioneer in the development of time-sharing operating systems.
  • His second project, Multics, was not a commercial success, but led directly to Ken Thompson's development of Unix. Multics is considered to have been the model for the design of nearly every significant operating system which followed.


  • The Compatible Time-Sharing System: A Programmer's Guide (1963)
  • The First Seven Years (1972)
  • On Building Systems That Will Fail (Turing Award Lecture, 1991)

Honors and awards

  • Turing Award (1990)
  • Awarded the Fellow Award by the Computer History Museum in California (2012)


"The number of lines of code a programmer can write in a fixed period of time is the same independent of the language used."
(Corbató's Law)