[TUHS] Portability (was: BSDi Imaging)

Greg 'groggy' Lehey grog at lemis.com
Mon Feb 27 06:49:00 AEST 2017


On Sunday, 26 February 2017 at  7:50:50 -0500, Noel Chiappa wrote:
>
> There were in theory portable languages beforehand (e.g. PL/1), but
> I think it probably over-specified things - e.g. it would be
> impossible to port Multics to another architecture without almost
> completely re-writing it from scratch, the code is shot through with
> "fixed bin(18)"'s every other line...

That may be coloured by your perspective.  C was never designed to be
portable, while much older languages like Algol and Cobol were.  There
were quite different reasons for C's success.

To quote "The Programmer's ABC's” from Datamation, April 1976:

  C is for Cobol
  What a pity
  It was designed
  By a committee

Greg
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