Programmers Day

Programmers’ Day, also known as Day of the Programmer, is a holiday observed on the 256th day of every year. During common years, that means it falls on September 13th, and in leap years, it’s celebrated on September 12th.

Why is it celebrated on the 256th day of the year? Because 256 is the number of distinct values that can be represented by a byte and is the highest power of two that is less than 365—the number of days in a common year.

The History of Programmers’ Day

This holiday started back in 2002 when two Russian programmers at Parallel Technologies gathered signatures in the hope that Russian officials would declare the Day of the Programmers as an official holiday. These two programmers were Valentin Balt and Michael Cherviakov, and in 2009, they got their wish for a holiday dedicated to programmers.

On September 11, 2009, it was officially signed into law by Russian President Dmitry Medvedev. Since then, this holiday has spread around the world and is known in many countries either as Day of the Programmer or Programmers’ Day.

Fun Facts About Programmers

Since we’re talking about a holiday that celebrates programmers, we thought it might be suitable to list some fun facts we’ve learned about programmers while researching this holiday. So let’s take a look at them before we move on to the section about how to observe this holiday.

The First Computer Programmer Was Female

The very first computer programmer was Ada Lovelace. In 1843, she published an English translation of an Analytical Engine that was penned by an Italian engineer named Luigi Menabrea.

In her translation, she added her own notes. In one of the notes, she described an algorithm for the Analytical Engine to compute Bernoulli numbers. Because this algorithm was considered to be the first ever specifically written for use on a computer, many people consider her to be the first programmer.

There Are Hundreds of Programming Languages

What many people don’t realize is that there is a wide variety of programming languages. If you count historical programming languages such as APL, JOSS, and MUMPS, along with modern programming languages such as JavaScript, Swift, and Objective-C, then you end up with over 700 programming languages altogether.

BASIC Was an Easy-to-Understand Programming Language

BASIC is a programming language that was first developed at Dartmouth College by Mary Keller, Thomas Kurtz, and John Kemeny in 1964. BASIC stands for Beginner’s All-purpose Symbolic Instruction Code.

True to its name, it was an easy-to-understand language that was extremely popular from 1970 to 1980. Although BASIC isn’t in use today, it’s sometimes used to teach the fundamentals of programming, and its new variation, Visual Basic, is still widely used.

Observing Programmers’ Day

Programmers’ Day can be observed by attending a job fair for programmers, learning new programming languages, or by helping someone with the fundamentals of programming. You can also share programming puns on the internet using the hashtag #ProgrammersDay.

When is it?
This year (2024)
September 12 Thursday
Next year (2025)
September 13 Saturday
Last year (2023)
September 13 Wednesday
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