[TUHS] Why Pascal is Not My Favorite Programming Language - Unearthed!

Clem Cole clemc at ccc.com
Fri Sep 1 06:51:05 AEST 2017

On Thu, Aug 31, 2017 at 4:37 PM, William Cheswick <ches at cheswick.com> wrote:

> I wrote a plotter driver for the CDC in Pascal.  Brian’s comments were
> apt: drivers aren’t quite the same as a filter, even a Knuthian-style
> program.
> I thought the world would end up using some post-Pascal, strongly typed
> language.  Maybe Oberon or Modula would fix things.  (I don’t think any of
> a decade’s worth of Pascal programs I wrote ever had a buffer overflow
> vulnerability.)

​ditto, Pascal and Mod-II and Mod-III were pretty slick.   They were a
little wordy compared to C, but I admit the programs we wrote in them "just
worked" and I can not think any security issues in any that we wrote.

> I look to the likes of go and rust to get us back on track.  C is a pretty
> good assembly language.


But Ches, that leaves the open question of what to teach?   My daughter
loves it and that's what college taught her, but I cringe when I look at
what she and her peeps do with Python.   To me that's more like shell
scripting.   Maybe its my inner curmudgeon showing.

I have not seen anything like Clancy's "Oh Pascal" book in the key of Go,
much less Brinch Hansen's "Java for Everyone" ​which I still think are two
of the best teaching text out there.
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