Rebecca J. Wirfs-Brock is an American software engineer and consultant in object-oriented programming and object-oriented design, the founder of the information technology consulting firm Wirfs-Brock Associates, and inventor of Responsibility-Driven Design, the first behavioral approach to object design.Wirfs-Brock holds a B.A. in computer and information science and psychology from the University of Oregon. She worked at Tektronix for 15 years as a software engineer before moving on to Instantiations , which was acquired by Digitalk which merged with Parc Place Systems to become ParcPlace-Digitalk in 1995. She was the Chief Technologist for the professional services organization of a Smalltalk language vendor.
She holds a U.S. Patent #4,635,049 "Apparatus for Presenting Image Information for Display Graphically" together with Warren Dodge.
Wirfs-Brock first coined the "-driven" meme in an OOPSLA 1989 paper she co-authored with Brian Wilkerson. Before that time, the most prevalent way of structuring objects was based on entity-relationship modeling ideas .
She wrote about object role stereotypes in 1992 in a Smalltalk Report article and this influenced the UML notion of stereotypes. Her invention of the conversational form of use cases was then popularized by Larry Constantine. Most of the more recent "driven" design approaches acknowledge their roots and the influence of RDD, of which class-responsibility-collaboration cards are one popular technique. She was the design columnist for IEEE Software until December 2009.