Re: Programming languages (software progress)

From: Mike & Donna Deering (
Date: Tue Jun 11 2002 - 07:08:08 MDT

Erik, I have sat through many messages in the archives concerning programming languages, without adding anything. Every programmer has their favorite language, usually the one that they know the best. Speaking as someone who doesn't know very much about any of them I may be able to point out something about the forest rather than a particular tree. Complexity is a problem. There is a natural tendency for complexity to increase without limit, just look at our legal system. A certain amount of complexity is a good thing but we (humans) don't know when to stop and simplify. Programming languages have gotten too complicated, along with operating systems, microprocessors (ultra-large instruction sets), and computers. When dealing with nature we all see the value of simplification, ask any physicist. But we are afraid to point out the need for simplification in man made objects, someone may think we are stupid. One of the reasons programming languages have gotten too complicated is that they are trying to solve problems at one level that require several levels. What we need is several languages that work together but on different levels in the same program at the same time. Each language would have the functions that are applicable to it's level. I understand why operating systems have gotten so complicated. It's because we want our computers to do so many things at once, running many programs simultaneously from different programmers that have to share resources without access to each others source code. Which is great, but every once in a while I just want my computer to do one thing at a time. Sometimes I don't want to load the huge operating system. I need an operating system like the one for the VIC20. I want to write programs and put them on disk, turn the computer off and on and load the program from disk and run it by itself. I would like a computer with a RISC chip processor and a simplified operating system. I suppose I will have to build my own computer. I can do that. I don't want to lose processor cycles to multi-threaded virtual machines. I'm an anachronism.


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