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did anyone ever program in RPG?
12-24-2017, 05:43 PM
Post: #21
RE: did anyone ever program in RPG?
Reference to a very good read on the history and the current status of RPG by Jennifer Gross (Murray State). Enjoy.

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SlideRule
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12-24-2017, 06:26 PM
Post: #22
RE: did anyone ever program in RPG?
(12-24-2017 05:43 PM)SlideRule Wrote:  Reference to a very good read on the history and the current status of RPG by Jennifer Gross (Murray State). Enjoy.

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Thanks SlideRule. Interesting read. I had no idea RPG was still alive.

I don't think I've ever seen "assembler" referred to as a business-oriented language, however. Maybe scientific.

Don
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12-24-2017, 06:46 PM
Post: #23
RE: did anyone ever program in RPG?
(07-03-2015 09:34 PM)Massimo Gnerucci Wrote:  
(07-03-2015 08:18 PM)Don Shepherd Wrote:  I had unknowingly deleted a period at the end of one of the COBOL division lines.

The most common error source in COBOL programming... Smile

Missing a period. The fear of COBOL programmers and teenage couples.

I wrote a language that was a combination of BASIC and COBOL. I called it BASBOL.
It struck out.

Tom L

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12-24-2017, 09:05 PM
Post: #24
RE: did anyone ever program in RPG?
(12-24-2017 06:46 PM)toml_12953 Wrote:  
(07-03-2015 09:34 PM)Massimo Gnerucci Wrote:  The most common error source in COBOL programming... :)

Missing a period. The fear of COBOL programmers and teenage couples.

I wrote a language that was a combination of BASIC and COBOL. I called it BASBOL.
It struck out.

"COBOL programmers understand why women hate periods."

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12-25-2017, 06:45 AM
Post: #25
RE: did anyone ever program in RPG?
(12-24-2017 06:26 PM)Don Shepherd Wrote:  
(12-24-2017 05:43 PM)SlideRule Wrote:  Reference to a very good read on the history and the current status of RPG by Jennifer Gross (Murray State). Enjoy.

BEST!
SlideRule

Thanks SlideRule. Interesting read. I had no idea RPG was still alive.

I don't think I've ever seen "assembler" referred to as a business-oriented language, however. Maybe scientific.

Don

Pet peeve: people calling "assembler" a language.

An assembler is a piece of software that translates a human-readable representation/abstraction of machine code into actual machine code; the language accepted by an assembler is "assembly language." Or is that just me?
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12-25-2017, 10:27 AM
Post: #26
RE: did anyone ever program in RPG?
(12-25-2017 06:45 AM)Thomas Okken Wrote:  
(12-24-2017 06:26 PM)Don Shepherd Wrote:  Thanks SlideRule. Interesting read. I had no idea RPG was still alive.

I don't think I've ever seen "assembler" referred to as a business-oriented language, however. Maybe scientific.

Don

Pet peeve: people calling "assembler" a language.

An assembler is a piece of software that translates a human-readable representation/abstraction of machine code into actual machine code; the language accepted by an assembler is "assembly language." Or is that just me?

Coming from IBM mainframes
Once upon a time I attended an assembler language course.

Nowadays I think you're right, though.

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12-25-2017, 01:41 PM
Post: #27
RE: did anyone ever program in RPG?
(12-25-2017 06:45 AM)Thomas Okken Wrote:  An assembler is a piece of software that translates a human-readable representation/abstraction of machine code into actual machine code; the language accepted by an assembler is "assembly language." Or is that just me?

Surely you are right, but I think there's a big amount of people still calling assembly language "assembler".

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12-30-2017, 12:33 AM (This post was last modified: 12-30-2017 07:04 AM by Don Shepherd.)
Post: #28
RE: did anyone ever program in RPG?
I received an old RPG programming book today, courtesy of Ebay. It was published in 1970 and addressed RPG programming on both the IBM 360 and the IBM System 3. Here are a few interesting tidbits from this old tome.

The authors claim that "K", as in 64K of memory, actually stands for multiples of 1028. Hmm, I always thought (and still think) that K=1024. How could they get this wrong?

When did "flowcharts" become "block diagrams" (perhaps when "Data Processing" became "Information Technology")? I realize nobody uses these today, but they were big when I began programming.

Apparently, early versions of RPG did not have square root functions; the book shows an example of RPG code that implements square root using the Newton-Raphson techniques. I wonder how trig functions were done in RPG. Since RPG seemed to be mostly designed for business processing, maybe that is a moot point.

The book looks into the future and briefly discusses "voice response" and includes the following sentence: Perhaps in the not-too-distant future some limited conversation ability will be possible with computers.

Hmm, Siri and Alexa, are you listening?

The 1970's were interesting.
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12-30-2017, 02:08 AM
Post: #29
RE: did anyone ever program in RPG?
In the early 80s during my short stint as a programmer at IBM (not RPG), flow charts where passe and Nassi-Schniderman charts where all the rage. We even had a tool that would generate the diagrams from pseudo-code.

By the early 1970s, in fact in 1964 IBM had an Audio Response Unit that used digitized audio stored on a drum. I remember a service rep telling me about working on the system that controlled a ARU at an automobile plant. It was set up so dealers could call in and enter a part number from their phone and the system would give them an audio response telling them if the part was available or not and where they could get it. Because the system was down the phone was ringing and ringing like the person calling was not giving up so after a while he went over and picked up the phone and said "I'm not feeling well, please call back later"

People that have written RPG tell me that the modern RPG that is used on the IBM/i operating system is nothing like the original RPG, so it might have things like floating point and trig functions. I am told that the original RPG was designed to be an electronic replacement for the plug boards used on the old grey iron unit record equipment.

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12-30-2017, 06:43 AM
Post: #30
RE: did anyone ever program in RPG?
(12-30-2017 02:08 AM)Paul Berger (Canada) Wrote:  In the early 80s during my short stint as a programmer at IBM (not RPG), flow charts where passe and Nassi-Schniderman charts where all the rage. We even had a tool that would generate the diagrams from pseudo-code.

By the early 1970s, in fact in 1964 IBM had an Audio Response Unit that used digitized audio stored on a drum. I remember a service rep telling me about working on the system that controlled a ARU at an automobile plant. It was set up so dealers could call in and enter a part number from their phone and the system would give them an audio response telling them if the part was available or not and where they could get it. Because the system was down the phone was ringing and ringing like the person calling was not giving up so after a while he went over and picked up the phone and said "I'm not feeling well, please call back later"

People that have written RPG tell me that the modern RPG that is used on the IBM/i operating system is nothing like the original RPG, so it might have things like floating point and trig functions. I am told that the original RPG was designed to be an electronic replacement for the plug boards used on the old grey iron unit record equipment.

Paul.

thanks Paul, very interesting.
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12-31-2017, 07:52 AM
Post: #31
RE: did anyone ever program in RPG?
Modern RPG is quite different from the original. However you can still mix modern and old in the same source file.

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01-01-2018, 08:54 PM
Post: #32
RE: did anyone ever program in RPG?
(12-30-2017 12:33 AM)Don Shepherd Wrote:  The authors claim that "K", as in 64K of memory, actually stands for multiples of 1028. Hmm, I always thought (and still think) that K=1024. How could they get this wrong?
The 1970's were interesting.

I recall indeed that "K" was widely used to distinguish 1024 bytes from kB being 1000 bytes. I think it changed to the ambigous meaning we have today at sometime in the mid to late 80s.

Günter
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01-02-2018, 12:15 AM
Post: #33
RE: did anyone ever program in RPG?
(01-01-2018 08:54 PM)Guenter Schink Wrote:  
(12-30-2017 12:33 AM)Don Shepherd Wrote:  The authors claim that "K", as in 64K of memory, actually stands for multiples of 1028. Hmm, I always thought (and still think) that K=1024. How could they get this wrong?
The 1970's were interesting.

I recall indeed that "K" was widely used to distinguish 1024 bytes from kB being 1000 bytes. I think it changed to the ambigous meaning we have today at sometime in the mid to late 80s.

Günter

Today we have Kibibytes (KiB) and Mebibytes (MiB) to further confuse the U.S. with the metric system.
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01-02-2018, 03:53 AM
Post: #34
RE: did anyone ever program in RPG?
As I recall, when talking about RAM, kilo, mega, etc. always stood for powers of 1024, because that's natural for RAM since RAM chips always (?) contain power-of-two number of bytes.

For hard drives, on the other hand, manufacturers have long preferred powers of 1000, because they get to quote larger numbers that way, and hard drive sizes are not necessarily powers of two -- although I think SSD sizes often are, so who knows what will happen there.

For transmission speeds, it's usually powers of 1000, I think.

The kibi, mebi, etc. thing is a good idea, but way too late, and besides they sound silly, so thanks but no thanks. Big Grin
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01-02-2018, 05:16 PM
Post: #35
RE: did anyone ever program in RPG?
(01-02-2018 03:53 AM)Thomas Okken Wrote:  As I recall, when talking about RAM, kilo, mega, etc. always stood for powers of 1024, because that's natural for RAM since RAM chips always (?) contain power-of-two number of bytes.

Time is relative Smile So is always! I have some computer magazines from the 80s. The advertisings ususually do what I pretended in my earlier post. October 1986: A IBM-compatible has 256K whereas a harddisk is advertised to have 20MB (3298 DM). There was a lot of discussion then. The "K" without the "B" was selected for the binary because it could be distinguished from the SI prefix "k".
That didn't work any longer with "M". But that wasn't a problem then because values higher than 1024K weren't talked of. And the mainframes didn't use that terminology at all in those times. They talked about "Words" - "Double Words" etc. Think of "640K ought to be enough for everybody"* Wink

Günter

*I must add, that this sentence was correct with respect to the maximum of addresses available for the 8086 or 8088 architecture that time, to leave enough addresses for peripherals.
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01-02-2018, 07:42 PM
Post: #36
RE: did anyone ever program in RPG?
(07-03-2015 01:55 PM)Don Shepherd Wrote:  
(07-03-2015 11:01 AM)Tugdual Wrote:  How would you define what is coding and what is not?

Well, I'm old-fashioned, in addition to being just "old." I cut my programming teeth in the 1970's on procedural programming languages like FORTRAN and COBOL and BASIC. Years ago I setup my own website that includes links to all of my favorite places. It's just a simple text file I update occasionally with Notepad when my favorites change. I don't consider that real "programming" and I don't consider people who maintain simple html files "programmers."

If you write "IF....THEN....ELSE...." then you are a programmer.

If you write

<td><a href=http://www.speakeasy.net/speedtest/><font size = 7>Internet speed</font></a></td>

then you are not a programmer.

That's just my opinion.

Interesting discussion, Don.

So in 1976 when I learned how to program on an HP-65, using flags, if-thens and comparisons, etc.
was I a programmer?

Btw, in 1977 I got a job with a time sharing company (Service Bureau, part of CDC).
In that job, I wrote programs in BASIC (for the the IBM370/158) to allow customer's data to be input to our proprietary system and the reporting, forecasting and analysis applications.

Fun days.

.....Art
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01-02-2018, 07:48 PM
Post: #37
RE: did anyone ever program in RPG?
(01-02-2018 05:16 PM)Guenter Schink Wrote:  
(01-02-2018 03:53 AM)Thomas Okken Wrote:  As I recall, when talking about RAM, kilo, mega, etc. always stood for powers of 1024, because that's natural for RAM since RAM chips always (?) contain power-of-two number of bytes.

Time is relative Smile So is always! I have some computer magazines from the 80s. The advertisings ususually do what I pretended in my earlier post. October 1986: A IBM-compatible has 256K whereas a harddisk is advertised to have 20MB (3298 DM). There was a lot of discussion then. The "K" without the "B" was selected for the binary because it could be distinguished from the SI prefix "k".
That didn't work any longer with "M". But that wasn't a problem then because values higher than 1024K weren't talked of. And the mainframes didn't use that terminology at all in those times. They talked about "Words" - "Double Words" etc. Think of "640K ought to be enough for everybody"* Wink

Günter

*I must add, that this sentence was correct with respect to the maximum of addresses available for the 8086 or 8088 architecture that time, to leave enough addresses for peripherals.

well it's a long way from my first computer in 1981 - an Atari with 640K and two (i think) ram cards of 1024k each.

I just installed a new NAS on my home system - 3 terabytes (RAID 1). I have no idea home many REAL bytes it has, but I've lived thru the Kilo, mega, giga and now tera. Not sure I will live long enough for the next increment identifier.

.....Art
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01-02-2018, 09:20 PM
Post: #38
RE: did anyone ever program in RPG?
(01-02-2018 07:48 PM)larthurl Wrote:  well it's a long way from my first computer in 1981 - an Atari with 640K and two (i think) ram cards of 1024k each.

1981 Atari 640K? Ram cards 1981 1024K? Guess you have to adjust your memory. No pun intended.

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01-09-2018, 02:44 AM
Post: #39
RE: did anyone ever program in RPG?
(01-02-2018 07:42 PM)larthurl Wrote:  
(07-03-2015 01:55 PM)Don Shepherd Wrote:  Well, I'm old-fashioned, in addition to being just "old." I cut my programming teeth in the 1970's on procedural programming languages like FORTRAN and COBOL and BASIC. Years ago I setup my own website that includes links to all of my favorite places. It's just a simple text file I update occasionally with Notepad when my favorites change. I don't consider that real "programming" and I don't consider people who maintain simple html files "programmers."

If you write "IF....THEN....ELSE...." then you are a programmer.

If you write

<td><a href=http://www.speakeasy.net/speedtest/><font size = 7>Internet speed</font></a></td>

then you are not a programmer.

That's just my opinion.

Interesting discussion, Don.

So in 1976 when I learned how to program on an HP-65, using flags, if-thens and comparisons, etc.
was I a programmer?

Btw, in 1977 I got a job with a time sharing company (Service Bureau, part of CDC).
In that job, I wrote programs in BASIC (for the the IBM370/158) to allow customer's data to be input to our proprietary system and the reporting, forecasting and analysis applications.

Fun days.

.....Art

Art, you are most definitely a programmer! I love the HP-65.

Don
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