[PD] [OT] cool book (maybe relevant to list discussion)

Mathieu Bouchard matju at artengine.ca
Sat Sep 10 20:09:15 CEST 2011

On Sat, 10 Sep 2011, Andy Farnell wrote:

> Just wondering if there was anything in that book you thought was cool. 
> It struck me as a nice idea to compare a bunch of languages.

As a non-buyer, I only have access to two chapters, so, I can't comment on 
that book.

But I have read other similar books in the past. While I tried to study at 
UQÀH, I borrowed from the library the books that hardly anyone would 
borrow, such as Raphael A Finkel's Advanced Programming Language Design 
(1996), which was very new back then, and a bunch of other ones whose 
titles I don't remember.

I eventually bought Woodman's Programming Language Choice, but it was less 
interesting, as much of the focus was on teaching introductory courses, 
and much of the book is occupied by N persons each presenting their 
favourite kind of Pascal/Modula/Ada clone. I quickly found it dubious that 
persistency would be touted as a programming language feature, rather than 
the base concepts that would make persistency a kind of pluggable library. 
I could sense that it was a buzzword of that time (1996).

Then after that, it's only on the web that I learned about programming 
languages. That's how I learned about Ruby. Then I gradually stopped 
paying attention.

I encountered Pd for reasons somewhat unrelated.

BTW, the first study about programming language comparison happened around 
1969-1972. It indexed several thousand programming languages that were 
already existing at that time, yet no language that we now use existed 
back then.

| Mathieu Bouchard ---- tél: +1.514.383.3801 ---- Villeray, Montréal, QC

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