I am Jeff Dyer

I am the founder of Artcompiler

When I was a kid, I loved building things. I made boats, and model rockets, and a photo darkroom with a homemade enlarger. I taught myself to program after I graduated college with a degree in Physics. I wanted to create natural language processing software, so I taught myself LISP and Prolog, the two dominant AI languages in the 1980s.

It turns out that symbolic processing of natural languages is hard to do, and expert systems didn't really work either. So, the industry entered the so called AI winter by the end of the 80s.

I repurposed my parsing skills to working on programming languages. I got a job creating SQL parsers for a software company in Silicon Valley and moved my family to Mountain View. That was 1990. I've here in Mountain View ever since.

For two decades I mostly worked on Javascript related languages. I served on the Javascript standard committee for ten years from 1998 to 2008, during the height of the browser wars that largely revolved around the design of Javascript.

In 2011, after an 8 year stint at Macromedia/Adobe as a lead on the design and implementation of Actionscript 3, I started Artcompiler. Artcompiler was started on the premise that it is better to create software by allowing experts in the problem domain to engage deeply in the code. This would be possible if I built a domain specific language into each subsystem of the software.

Starting in about 2008, I began experimenting with this idea in an open source project I called Graffiticode. The idea was to create APIs that take an argument that is code in a task specific language. This code defines what to do with the other inputs.

Fast forward to 2023, the APIs are web APIs. Every API has a task specific language used to program it. Artcompiler is a studio dedicated to developing API-first, language-based, task specific web APIs.