Larry Tesler, the Xerox PARC computer scientist who coined the terms cut, copy, and paste, has died. Credit: Handout.

Let me think. How many times have I done it?

Maybe a million times? Cut and paste … cut and paste … cut and paste.

We take it for granted, no?

Larry Tesler, the mind behind cut, copy and paste has died aged 74, The Independent reported.

Tesler played a key role in the development of a range of Apple products, serving as VP of AppleNet and Apple’s Advanced Technology Group, the report said.

Prior to this the computer scientist had a pioneering career in technology.

After studying the subject at Stanford University he went on to work for the legendary R&D facility, Xerox PARC, the report said.

However, Tesler’s crowning achievement was the invention of cut, copy and paste, a function that is now taken for granted in modern computers.

Fuelled by a passion for modeless computing, Tesler helped to create a system in which the user doesn’t have to switch constantly between different input states, the report said.

He met Steve Jobs in 1979 when Apple came to look around the Xerox PARC facility and was impressed by his mastery of seemingly every aspect of the computer industry.

The systems at PARC would later inspire the creation of the Macintosh, the first successful mass-market personal computer with a graphical user interface, the report said.

“We were technologists with very logical minds, but Steve also knew about marketing, distribution, finance – every aspect of the business you could think of,” Tesler said in an interview in 2011.

A year after meeting Jobs, Tesler started at Apple working on the Apple Lisa Project, an ill-fated first attempt at a business computer, the report said.

Despite being a comparative failure at the time, the Lisa was an enormously significant step for computer technology and advancement of human-computer interaction, the report said.

After leaving Apple, Tesler worked for Amazon and Yahoo and for the past decade freelanced as a technology consultant.

Tesler is fondly regarded as an encapsulation of hippie and high-tech culture that helped create Apple as a company.

Asia Times Financial is now live. Linking accurate news, insightful analysis and local knowledge with the ATF China Bond 50 Index, the world's first benchmark cross sector Chinese Bond Indices. Read ATF now.