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Can't speak to 1, but I kind of feel like TJ Holowaychuk in the Node.js community started getting close to Fabrice's level (until he left Node). Express, Stylus, Koa, Formidable, etc...

TJ has created a large number of popular software packages, but I don't consider the depth of the software to be close in complexity of the type of software that Fabrice is capable of - basically anything he puts his mind to.

bellard.org - has the most impressive portfolio of software created from a single developer I've ever seen. It's more astonishing how varied each of his accomplishments are - covering some of the hardest programs in different computer science fields.

He's by far the best programmer in my book, I'm not sure who I'd put at #2, there's a number of contenders, but anyone else I can think of are experts in their respective fields, I don't know of anyone who has compiled such a broad list of complex software covering that many different fields.

Yeah, it's the breadth that gets me. There are several very impressive expert programmers in their area, but Fabrice seems to be able to step into any subfield he finds interesting, work on it for a couple years, then leave something behind that others are willing to spend years of their lives maintaining and extending. I could see QuickJS quietly running on a Mars rover 10 years from now. Not because JS. Because Fabrice. Always bet on Bellard.

Donald Knuth is certainly in the same league.

No doubt a brilliant academic and mathematical mind with invaluable contributions to field of comp-sci and algorithms and author of the iconic TAOCP, but in terms of software works he's single-handedly produced? He's most famous for TeX typesetting system and inventing Literate programming, but his other software have had a lot less impact.

But that's mostly by choice as he's predominantly a professor who spends most of his time teaching so he's obviously going to have created a lot less body of digital works than a full-time developer is going to have.

He also designed and implemented METAFONT.


Also Pug (Formerly Jade)

Take it easy on the insults ;)

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