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HP Forum Archive 19

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BASIC 45th anniversary
Message #1 Posted by Don Shepherd on 2 May 2009, 8:33 a.m.

Yesterday was the 45th anniversary of the BASIC language. On May 1, 1964 at Dartmouth University, at 4:00 AM, Professor John Kemeny and a student programmer entered a simple program and typed RUN at the same time, and BASIC was born.

      
Re: BASIC 45th anniversary
Message #2 Posted by Johnny Bjoern Rasmussen on 2 May 2009, 12:35 p.m.,
in response to message #1 by Don Shepherd

My first computer was a Sinclair ZX-81. So here's my tribune to my first programming language (except from entering program lines in my TI-57, wich was before my ZX-81).

10 REM BASIC BIRTHDAY GREETINGS
20 FOR A=1 TO 49
30 PRINT "HURRAY"
40 NEXT A
50 PRINT "H U R R A Y Y Y Y Y Y Y ! ! !"
60 STOP

Johnny

            
Re: BASIC 45th anniversary
Message #3 Posted by Egan Ford on 2 May 2009, 5:41 p.m.,
in response to message #2 by Johnny Bjoern Rasmussen

Recycled 71B program:

2 OPTION BASE 0 @ DESTROY ALL @ DIM A$[79] @ L=0 @ DIM E$[435] @ N=0
4 INTEGER Z(1610) @ C=1610 @ D=0 @ E=10000 @ F=100000 @ H=0
6 B=C @ C=C-1 @ IF B<=1523 THEN 20
8 B=B-1 @ IF B=0 THEN 14
10 IF H=0 THEN D=D+E*F ELSE D=D+Z(B)*F
12 Z(B)=MOD(D,B) @ D=FLOOR(D/B) @ GOTO 8
14 H=5 @ X=E+FLOOR(D/F) @ DISP "."; @ D=MOD(D,F) @ E=D @ N=N+5
16 FOR I=1 TO 5 @ E$[N-I+1,N-I+1]=STR$(MOD(X,10)) @ X=FLOOR(X/10) @ NEXT I
18 GOTO 6
20 N=1 @ FOR I=1 TO 100 @ READ A @ FOR J=1 TO 16 @ L=L+1
22 IF L=80 THEN 28
24 IF MOD(A,2)=1 THEN A$=A$&E$[N,N] @ N=N+1 ELSE A$=A$&" "
26 A=INT(A/2) @ NEXT J
28 IF MOD(I,5)=0 THEN DISP A$ @ A$="" @ L=0
30 NEXT I
32 DISP
34 DATA 0,0,0,0,0,58124,61936,1561,0,0,58124,13104
36 DATA 795,0,0,45446,6937,435,0,0,45446,6937,435,0
38 DATA 0,39422,63993,241,0,0,39302,6169,96,0,0,64902
40 DATA 6169,96,0,0,3267,3087,48,0,0,1731,3087,48
42 DATA 0,0,0,0,0,0,0,0,60540,28615,2008,24974
44 DATA 0,27852,25356,3288,12686,0,14022,12684,6252,6939,0,14022
46 DATA 12684,6252,6939,0,63038,61831,39023,3865,0,14022,12675,39020
48 DATA 1561,0,14022,12675,52284,1567,0,7107,6342,52790,816,0
50 DATA 7039,6342,25590,816
      
Re: BASIC 45th anniversary
Message #4 Posted by Namir on 2 May 2009, 3:59 p.m.,
in response to message #1 by Don Shepherd

Don,

In the mid 80s I had the opportunity to meet the parents of BASIC, John Kemeny and Thomas Kurtz in their True BASIC office in Dartmouth, NH. When I met John Kemeny (who was once the dean of Dartmouth) I asked him about his experience working for Einstein. Kemeny was helping Einstein solve PDEs. He said that even in his seventies, Einstein was an incredible person. After a year of working for him, Kemeny told Einstein that the task at hand was very difficult. Must have been really tough equations to solve.

I had teh chance to meet with Prof Kurtz a few times. Both founders of BASIC were very nice and very approachable.

Namir

            
Re: BASIC 45th anniversary
Message #5 Posted by Marcus von Cube, Germany on 2 May 2009, 4:21 p.m.,
in response to message #4 by Namir

BASIC was the first programming language I had encountered as a young student at the age of 16, 33 years ago. It was Wang BASIC running on a computer located at the school of a friend of mine. I wasn't supposed to use the computer at all, but it was so challenging that we just did it. ;)

On my first attempts in programming I thought I had to use GOTO if I wanted to jump to a line below the current line and GOSUB if I wanted to jump backwards. My English was as basic as my understanding of BASIC.

I think, I've made some progress by now. ;)

My contribution to the BASIC community: http://www.mvcsys.de/doc/basic_compare.html

            
Re: BASIC 45th anniversary
Message #6 Posted by Don Shepherd on 3 May 2009, 10:32 p.m.,
in response to message #4 by Namir

Dr. Kemeny, a Hungarian, died in 1992. Dr. Kurtz is still living.


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