Bob Bemer died this week. I thought I had written about him before, but I haven’t. As his home page explains, among his acheivements were the addition of the backslash to ASCII, and the creation of the escape character. These artifacts are so paleolithic, it’s hard to remember that someone had to create them. He also explains where curly braces came from. Next time you type curly braces in your favorite programming language, or use the escape key to dismiss an annoying dialog, thank Bob.