Obituaries recognise former journalist, Bill Hill, as software pioneer

“BILL Hill will probably be best remembered as the ‘father of e-reading’.”

So begins an obituary in yesterday’s Scotsman newspaper, paying tribute to the journalist-turned-software-developer who created ClearType, considered a revolutionary way of presenting type, on-screen.

Writes Peter May: “I first met Bill when we were reporters together at the Paisley Daily Express, and later in the Glasgow office of The Scotsman. Our shared passion for music led to a collaboration in writing, playing and recording music – talking, dreaming, knowing that the future must hold more. He could never have dreamt then where it would take him.”

There is an obituary too of Hill in Saturday’s edition of the Paisley Daily Express.

May continues in The Scotsman: “Bill quit The Scotsman in 1986 to join the Aldus Corporation, a software company in Edinburgh. It was where he 
co-invented ClearType, which revolutionised the readability of text on screen, and led 
Microsoft to pursue him in the 1990s to head up its typography group in Seattle. There he found that while his IQ of nearly 160 had usually made him the brightest guy in any gathering, he was now – in his own words – ‘the dumbest guy in the room’.”

May is quoted in the Paisley Daily Express, as saying: “Bill was an exceptional talent and a lovely, gentle, compassionate human being. The world will be a poorer place without him.”

Hill reportedly died suddenly from a heart attack at his home in Redmond, Washington State, aged 63.