Man behind cut, copy and paste shortcuts dies aged 74

Icon of early computing, Larry Tesler,  has died at the age of 74. Thanks to his innovations – which included the “cut”, “copy” and “paste” commands -personal computer became simple to learn and use.

Mr Tesler was born in the Bronx, New York, in 1945, and studied at Stanford University in California.

After graduating, he specialised in user interface design – that is, making computer systems more user-friendly.

He worked for a number of major tech firms during his long career. He started at Xerox Palo Alto Research Center (Parc), before Steve Jobs poached him for Apple, where he spent 17 years and rose to chief scientist.

After leaving Apple he set up an education start-up, and worked for brief periods at Amazon and Yahoo.

Possibly Tesler’s most famous innovation, the cut and paste command, was reportedly based on the old method of editing in which people would physically cut portions of printed text and glue them elsewhere.

The command was incorporated in Apple’s software on the Lisa computer in 1983, and the original Macintosh that was released the following year.