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Origin of the Hollywood Principle

February 5th, 2004

The techno-archeological research for the original coiner of the Hollywood Principle (aka “don’t call us, we call you”, aka Inversion of Control) continues. Daniel Smith was so kind to forward me this email conversation between him and John Vlissides where he indicates that:

In Design Patterns we attribute the term to Richard E. Sweet’s “The Mesa Programming Environment,” SIGPLAN Notices, 20(7):216-229, July 1985.

This paper again references this as the Hollywood Law and cites it from the Tajo Functional Specification where bibliography states:

Wallace, Donald C., Tajo Functional Specification, Version 6.0, Xerox internal document (October 1980).

So, bottom line, the Inversion of Control paradigm was coined at Xerox PARC where so many other things were invented.