Hans Reiser is the creator of the Linux file system ReiserFS, and a convicted murderer. In 2006 he murdered his wife. He was convicted in 2008.
Reiser's defense -- the so called geek defense -- was that as a geek, and possibly on account of Aspergers Syndrome, he did not understand that his actions in the aftermath of Nina Reiser's disappearance would look like attempts to cover up a murder. When asked if he was "dysfunctional in every social setting" by his defense attorney, he said "Except in being a scientist". This is an extreme case of He's just like that: an attempt to excuse anti-social behaviour because geeks can't help behaving that way.
Early coverage Edit
From before the trial and during early stages of it.
- Hans Reiser: once a Linux visionary, now accused of murder (Wired)
- Reiser is Innocent blog (most active in 2007)
Later coverage Edit
From the late stages of the trial and after conviction.
- "His other defense is the so-called geek defense: Any guilt-ridden behavior he may have displayed in the aftermath of her disappearance was a manifestation of him being a socially inept computer geek devoid of social skills."
- "You may dislike him--that would put you in the majority of people who know him--but he didn't commit the crime," Du Bois said, adding that the jury need look no further than this video presented in court of Reiser giving a seminar at Google headquarters about his file system to see he's a "genuine nerd," according to news accounts
- Hans Reiser and the Aspergers Defense: Troubling (Autism Vox)
- "The whole case is plenty troubling on its own. But seeing Asperger’s so readily equated with being “mentally incompetent” or having a “mental disorder” or being “nuts” is incredibly troubling"