What Was Your First Programming Language?
07-09-2015, 12:57 PM (This post was last modified: 07-09-2015 01:42 PM by Bill (Smithville NJ).)
Post: #101
 Bill (Smithville NJ) Senior Member Posts: 414 Joined: Dec 2013
RE: What Was Your First Programming Language?
(07-09-2015 07:36 AM)Les Bell Wrote:  Turbo Pascal subsequently introduced a number of extensions that solved some of the problems, but were contrary to the spirit of the language.

.......

Turbo Pascal was an incredible product and hugely influential in its time - a lot of popular applications were written in it, and still are, using derivatives like Delphi - but I've always been of the opinion that it shouldn't have been called "Pascal". Wirth himself moved on to Modula and especially Modula-2, which solved the problems with Pascal.

This begs the question: How many if us actually use a programming language that adheres to the "official" language definitions and that did not have a single extension to the official definition? And how many of us restrained ourselves from using those language extensions in our programs?

I don't think I have - every implantation of the languages that I have used (granted a very small subset) has some variation from the original definition - usually in the way of extensions to the language. And I gladly used those extensions.

I'm a Turbo Pascal fan. I have used it since CP/M days and still use it today. Of course I'm only programming for myself and have the liberty to play with whatever I want to - no need for anyone else to see or use my poor attempt at programming.

And they did change the name - It wasn't called Pascal, It was called 'Turbo' Pascal which implied Pascal on steroids. The extensions did no harm to the original Pascal intent as defined by Wirth, but made Pascal much more popular than Wirth could have ever imagined. The result was a lot of programmers that used Turbo Pascal and then moved on to other languages.

I'd be willing to bet that in the early days of the PC, Turbo Pascal, with it's relatively cheap purchase price, integrated editing/compiling environment, probably did more to creating hobbyist programmers than did almost anything else you could name. Many of these hobbyist programmers went on to become professional programmers using many of the later languages.

Turbo Pascal also influenced many of the other languages that were available at the time. As a result of it's low price, we saw other languages reducing their price. All of a sudden, programming was affordable to the average PC hobbyist. I know that I couldn't afford a $400-500 compiler, but WOW - I could afford a$50 Turbo Pascal compiler. And it was a compiler not an interpreter. What a step up from the Basic interpreter that came with my PC. And boy was it fast.

I could say "I hate C/C+" etc. Who cares? I like eggs and bacon. Someone here will tell me he hates eggs and bacon. Again who cares?

We all use whatever language we like and that is great. What I would really hate was if there was only one language and we were all forced to use it.

Bill
Smithville, NJ
07-09-2015, 02:09 PM
Post: #102
 jebem Senior Member Posts: 1,330 Joined: Feb 2014
RE: What Was Your First Programming Language?
(07-09-2015 12:57 PM)Bill (Smithville NJ) Wrote:
(07-09-2015 07:36 AM)Les Bell Wrote:  Turbo Pascal subsequently introduced a number of extensions that solved some of the problems, but were contrary to the spirit of the language.
(...)
Turbo Pascal was an incredible product and hugely influential in its time - a lot of popular applications were written in it, and still are, using derivatives like Delphi (...)

This begs the question: How many if us actually use a programming language that adheres to the "official" language definitions and that did not have a single extension to the official definition? And how many of us restrained ourselves from using those language extensions in our programs?

Borland Turbo Pascal, along with Turbo C, were two of my preferred programming environments when I used to develop small hardware projects to interface to the IBM PC-DOS.

Both were very efficient when creating structured programs, while at the same time it allowed to include inline Assembly code to reach the low level interface and direct system calls when required.
Otherwise for better control, code compactness and efficiency, I would just switch to the standard Microsoft 8086 Macro Assembler.

Jose Mesquita

07-09-2015, 02:23 PM
Post: #103
 Katie Wasserman Super Moderator Posts: 629 Joined: Dec 2013
RE: What Was Your First Programming Language?
(07-09-2015 12:57 PM)Bill (Smithville NJ) Wrote:  I'm a Turbo Pascal fan. I have used it since CP/M days and still use it today. Of course I'm only programming for myself and have the liberty to play with whatever I want to - no need for anyone else to see or use my poor attempt at programming.

CP/M, impressive! My friends kid me that I use archaic operating systems and languages but I haven't touched CP/M since 1983. I started my computer consulting career in CP/M mostly programming in CBASIC.

-katie

07-09-2015, 03:06 PM
Post: #104
 Bill (Smithville NJ) Senior Member Posts: 414 Joined: Dec 2013
RE: What Was Your First Programming Language?
(07-09-2015 02:23 PM)Katie Wasserman Wrote:  CP/M, impressive! My friends kid me that I use archaic operating systems and languages but I haven't touched CP/M since 1983. I started my computer consulting career in CP/M mostly programming in CBASIC.

Hi Katie,

Not really sure how impressive that should be - it just means I'm getting old.

I still run a CP/M-86 system on a HP Omnibook 430. It's a dual boot system - MSDOS and CP/M-86. The CP/M is running CVV which allows for 15 additional 8 MB virtual hard drives. I can copy files to/from the MSDOS partition. It's a lot of fun to play around with.

For playing around with CPM-80, I run an emulator - MYZ80. It's a great emulator and likewise has utilities to copy files to/from the MSDOS partition.

Bill
Smithville, NJ
07-09-2015, 10:54 PM
Post: #105
 Les Bell Member Posts: 188 Joined: Dec 2013
RE: What Was Your First Programming Language?
(07-09-2015 02:23 PM)Katie Wasserman Wrote:  CP/M, impressive! My friends kid me that I use archaic operating systems and languages but I haven't touched CP/M since 1983. I started my computer consulting career in CP/M mostly programming in CBASIC.

I actually have a CBASIC version of that program, but I won't bore everyone by posting it. It's noticeably different from the Microsoft BASIC version in that CBASIC had a WHILE statement and didn't rely on GOTO - or line numbers, for that matter. It also used decimal arithmetic, making it particularly suitable for financial applications. And in the comments, I noted that its RANDOMIZE statement uses the delay in responding to a preceding INPUT statement to seed the RND function.

Gordon Eubanks, who wrote it, went on to found Symantec - from which he's done very nicely, thank you.

--- Les
[http://www.lesbell.com.au]
07-09-2015, 11:07 PM
Post: #106
 Don Shepherd Senior Member Posts: 724 Joined: Dec 2013
RE: What Was Your First Programming Language?
(07-09-2015 10:54 PM)Les Bell Wrote:  Gordon Eubanks, who wrote it, went on to found Symantec - from which he's done very nicely, thank you.

Hmm, I wonder if Bob Eubanks was Gordon's brother. You remember him, The Newlywed Game host:

Gentlemen, what is your wife's most unusual habit?

husband: Not shaving her legs!

wife plants an elbow on her husband

(from a scene in The Graduate)

The 70's were certainly TV's "golden age."
07-10-2015, 02:46 AM
Post: #107
 Katie Wasserman Super Moderator Posts: 629 Joined: Dec 2013
RE: What Was Your First Programming Language?
(07-09-2015 10:54 PM)Les Bell Wrote:  I actually have a CBASIC version of that program, but I won't bore everyone by posting it. It's noticeably different from the Microsoft BASIC version in that CBASIC had a WHILE statement and didn't rely on GOTO - or line numbers, for that matter. It also used decimal arithmetic, making it particularly suitable for financial applications. And in the comments, I noted that its RANDOMIZE statement uses the delay in responding to a preceding INPUT statement to seed the RND function.

I can't say that I made use of the RANDOMIZE statement in CBASIC but I depended on the decimal arithmetic for my work, the structured programming was also great to have in BASIC. The compiler ran quite fast but the object code (really p-code) wasn't so zippy. Still, for what I used it for it was an excellent language in its day.

-katie

07-10-2015, 02:49 AM
Post: #108
 Katie Wasserman Super Moderator Posts: 629 Joined: Dec 2013
RE: What Was Your First Programming Language?
(07-09-2015 11:07 PM)Don Shepherd Wrote:  Hmm, I wonder if Bob Eubanks was Gordon's brother. You remember him, The Newlywed Game ...

The middle of the trio of shows that a lucky 70's couple could be a guest on:

Dating Game ---> Newlywed Game --> Divorce Court

-katie

07-10-2015, 12:34 PM
Post: #109
 Bill (Smithville NJ) Senior Member Posts: 414 Joined: Dec 2013
RE: What Was Your First Programming Language?
(07-10-2015 02:49 AM)Katie Wasserman Wrote:
(07-09-2015 11:07 PM)Don Shepherd Wrote:  Hmm, I wonder if Bob Eubanks was Gordon's brother. You remember him, The Newlywed Game ...

The middle of the trio of shows that a lucky 70's couple could be a guest on:

Dating Game ---> Newlywed Game --> Divorce Court

Of course, now days, another show can be added for the lucky couple:

Dating Game ---> Newlywed Game --> Wife Swap --> Divorce Court

Bill
Smithville, NJ
07-10-2015, 02:43 PM
Post: #110
 Don Shepherd Senior Member Posts: 724 Joined: Dec 2013
RE: What Was Your First Programming Language?
(07-10-2015 12:34 PM)Bill (Smithville NJ) Wrote:  Of course, now days, another show can be added for the lucky couple:

Dating Game ---> Newlywed Game --> Wife Swap --> Divorce Court

Bill
Smithville, NJ

That's the reason I don't watch TV anymore.
07-11-2015, 01:19 AM (This post was last modified: 07-11-2015 02:32 PM by Dave Frederickson.)
Post: #111
 Dave Frederickson Senior Member Posts: 1,869 Joined: Dec 2013
RE: What Was Your First Programming Language?
(07-10-2015 12:34 PM)Bill (Smithville NJ) Wrote:  ... Wife Swap ...

The show went by the politically correct name Love, American Style.
07-12-2015, 07:49 PM
Post: #112
 Namir Senior Member Posts: 743 Joined: Dec 2013
RE: What Was Your First Programming Language?
FORTRAN IV.

Namir
12-02-2017, 04:36 PM
Post: #113
 Thomas Okken Senior Member Posts: 1,089 Joined: Feb 2014
RE: What Was Your First Programming Language?
ALGOL 60 on CDC Cyber 175, in 1977. Punched cards.
I remember the TA who pored over one of my core dumps had a TI Programmer, which I thought was very cool. The core dump was all octal. :-)
12-02-2017, 04:49 PM
Post: #114
 grsbanks Senior Member Posts: 1,147 Joined: Jan 2017
RE: What Was Your First Programming Language?
If you mean programming a computer then that would be BASIC on a Commodore PET in 1978 or thereabouts. If a calculator then my first programming language was keystroke programming a TI-35 back in about 1980.
12-02-2017, 05:20 PM (This post was last modified: 12-02-2017 06:21 PM by smp.)
Post: #115
 smp Senior Member Posts: 425 Joined: Jul 2015
RE: What Was Your First Programming Language?
(07-12-2015 07:49 PM)Namir Wrote:  FORTRAN IV.

Yes! Me too. On punch cards for batch processing by the mainframe attendants.

smp
12-02-2017, 05:29 PM
Post: #116
 mwthomasjr Junior Member Posts: 31 Joined: Jan 2015
RE: What Was Your First Programming Language?
Atari BASIC on the Atari 400 I convinced my father to purchase.

I typed the programs on the membrane keyboard. I tried to convert programs from the big yellow "Basic Computer Games" book by David Ahl to Atari's different syntax. I didn't have a "Program Recorder" (cassette), and definitely could not afford a Disk Drive when I first started so I had to retype the programs until I got the cassette and eventually other storage options.
12-02-2017, 06:30 PM
Post: #117
 zeno333 Member Posts: 189 Joined: Mar 2015
RE: What Was Your First Programming Language?
BASIC, running on the College computer, a Univac 90/60 mainframe.
12-02-2017, 07:18 PM (This post was last modified: 12-02-2017 08:06 PM by pier4r.)
Post: #118
 pier4r Senior Member Posts: 2,065 Joined: Nov 2014
RE: What Was Your First Programming Language?
(07-03-2015 05:51 PM)Dave Frederickson Wrote:  Inspired by "did anyone ever program in RPG?".

Nice link as well. I should read this section (not HP calc) as I did with the general forum.

Anyway some history.

Around I was 10-12 (1990') : Turbo Pascal (7.0) . I was introduced to pascal by some books in the library of my grandmother (the family had a lot of books there) and then in high school we had Pascal as well. Barely touched but there was a manual.

I used Pascal mostly for little math problems (as today I would use the 50g and RPL). I remember my first serious program was to solve some cases of a quadratic equation.

I can also say that, thanks to this very recollection, the environment in which one grows is important. Surely personal curiosity helps, but having peers or other people doing similar steps helps more to continue one experiences in a topic. Indeed I had very few stimuli aside from the little math problems.

In Pascal I never really used much more than arrays, single variables. No records or objects.
I had a briefly introduction to Delphi, but I did not followed it because I couldn't purchase it.
I was Pascal only for many years, and I even followed a magazine about end user computers, but there was not much programming there. Sure with hindsight is easy to say that those were poor choices.

Then in the University (late 2000) I was introduced to Java (started with Java 1.4 IIRC). Nice thing, liked OOP , concurrency and other stuff.

Alone I did a bit of Vbscript, javascript(node.js)/jscript. Then was the turn of scilab, of which I liked a lot since, well, math environment that do not require extensive search of libraries and testing (is the library I downloaded good for me?) are always nice. Although scilab was really slow sometimes (scilab 5.x or something).

Then I bought to myself the hp 50g. So userRPL (I never went past userRPL, although I know that C is possible)

Then thanks to the nokia e5 I dived a bit more in python. (python s60)
Then VBA (excel), realbasic , freepascal (here I used for the first time records and pointers), C++ (with an emule mod), assembly, prolog , sql, autoit (with Xpadder is great) .

Later at work (system administration. Sometimes I wonder why I did not picked a programming first job) more sql, awk, more bash, powershell, some php, some java, plpgsql (interesting thing), javascript (highcharts.com is a neat replacement of office or gnuplot), some perl, puppet.

I still miss - damn me - a serious dive in a functional language. I'd say Ocaml or Lisp because why not, and on the other side I's like to seriously start with HPPL.
For this I blame the 50g, with its RPL that does the job too much times and the availability of commands or functions for mostly everything I care to solve. It is fricking impressive.

Also won't be bad to know a basic implementation (not VB.net that is windows only) that has also quite some math libraries, at the level of a scientific calculator at least.

On puppet one may say "but it is not really programming". Indeed they have a funny view of variables, that until puppet 5.2 are more constant than variables, but it is nonetheless a variant of declarative programming. One may achieve somehow even loops (spamming new resources though).

I also think that some advanced usage of markup languages is not different than declarative programming, where one feeds "how the solution should look like" to an engine that understand and act to produce a result.

edit1: the best introduction to OOP read by me so far is the one explained in the manual (free, online) of turbo pascal 5.5 .

edit2: some nice links in the thread. A site had a warning of "hacked page", so I found this: https://github.com/Droogans/unmaintainable-code

edit3: read the thread. Really nice. Anyway while I know that python is really powerful, the forced indentation stile and the absence of curly braces that for me help to clearly define a block do not let me like it.

Because sometimes I do like:

Code:
 code #comment other code code

Therefore isolating some code parts (if I don't want to put them in to functions) that are a bit subtle with comments around. In python I am not sure it works well if I don't keep the indentation of the empty lines.

Wikis are great, Contribute :)
12-02-2017, 08:09 PM (This post was last modified: 12-02-2017 08:37 PM by Dave Frederickson.)
Post: #119
 Dave Frederickson Senior Member Posts: 1,869 Joined: Dec 2013
RE: What Was Your First Programming Language?
(12-02-2017 07:18 PM)pier4r Wrote:  edit2: some nice links in the thread. A site had a warning of "hacked page", so I found this: https://github.com/Droogans/unmaintainable-code

Yes! One of my favorite webpages. Thanks for finding a new link. I've fixed it in Post #13.
12-03-2017, 01:09 AM
Post: #120
 brickviking Senior Member Posts: 334 Joined: Dec 2014
RE: What Was Your First Programming Language?
I can't honestly say which programming language I rubbed shoulders with first, as I can remember LOGO (on a 6809-based system), Apple IIe, and my little Sharp PC-1247, which ran BASIC. For a while, I had a ZX-81 (but had no screen to run it with) and some CPU (I think it might have been 4004) that you programmed with switches.

Since then of course I've run into assembler (8080, Z80, Motorola 68000+others, Intel/AMD 80x86, POWER (mainly PPC), ARM, Saturn, 6502 and a tiny little bit of 6809), ash/bash/sh/csh/ksh/pdksh/tcsh/tcl/zsh, autoconf, awk (and gawk), more BASIC than I can shake a stick at, brain****, C, C++, C#, dBase III+, flex+yacc, forth, fortran, F#, java, javascript, Lisp, MMIX from TAoCP (yes, Knuth's baby), Modula-2, Pascal, perl, Postscript, powershell, Python, REXX (and ARexx), RPL (50g variant), ruby, sed, Smalltalk (-76,-80, Squeak etc), SQL (PostGreSQL, MySQL, NoSQL), TeX, vim (yes, it has a scripting language, sort of) xml, and several others I can neither remember nor name. Very little has stuck except for what I'm using currently (Casio BASIC for the fx-9750, a bit of bash and RPL). I certainly wouldn't claim to be an expert in anything.

Funnily enough, I've hardly ever seen COBOL, SNOBOL, PL/1 or APL. Others I've generally stayed away from are some of the functional languages such as Heron or Haskell.

(Post 139)

Regards, BrickViking
HP-50g |Casio fx-9750G+ |Casio fx-9750GII (SH4a)
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