His ancestors came from Trondheim, Norway.  His parents were Stella and Olaf Iverson, who went from North Dakota, USA to a town in central Alberta, Canada where they were farmers. Kenneth Eugene Iverson was born on 07 Dec 1920 in Camrose, Alberta, Canada. 
During World War II, he served first in the Canadian Army and then in the Royal Canadian Air Force.  In 1950 he graduated from Queen's University as the top student with a Bachelor's degree in mathematics and physics. Continuing his education at Harvard University, he began in the Department of Mathematics and received a Master's degree in 1951. He then switched to the Department of Engineering and Applied Physics. His 1954 thesis was titled Machine Solutions of Linear Differential Equations – Applications to a Dynamic Economic Model.
He had a scientific career in the fields of mathematics and computer science. He was a Canadian computer scientist noted for the development of the programming language APL (Advanced Programming Language) which is used by financial institutions.
In 1979 he was honored with the Turing Award "for his pioneering effort in programming languages and mathematical notation resulting in what the computing field now knows as APL; for his contributions to the implementation of interactive systems, to educational uses of APL, and to programming language theory and practice".
On 16 Oct 2004 he suffered a stroke while working at the computer and died on 19 Oct 2004 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada at the age of 83. 
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