Re: Programming Languages, "to C or not to C, that is the Q."

From: Michael Marsh (michael.a.marsh_at_gmail.com)
Date: 01/25/05

  • Next message: DePriest, Jason R.: "Re: Mounting ext2 filesystem images under Windows."
    Date: Tue, 25 Jan 2005 16:50:52 -0500
    To: debian-user@lists.debian.org
    
    

    On Tue, 25 Jan 2005 15:18:47 -0600, Steve Block <scblock@ev-15.com> wrote:
    > I hope to god people aren't still writing F77 code on a daily basis. I'm
    > a fairly experience F90 and F95 coder, but I can barely decipher what is going
    > on in most F77 programs. Fixed format F77 code has to be one of the strangest
    > things anyone ever forced on programmers (I recognize that someone using
    > it for years might think it is easy, but I don't).

    When I left grad school, my old experiment was still using F77 for
    some parts of the data analysis system. There were a number of people
    unwilling to let go of Fortran, and F77 was what the experiment
    standardized on (to the extent that anything was "standard"). It
    really isn't *that* bad, though it's a very limiting language,
    especially if you officially "ban" certain constructs such as computed
    GOTO. We did allow variable and function names greater than six
    characters, though.

    I used to be responsible for the older codebase, which was almost
    entirely in F77 (about half a million lines written by Physicists,
    much of it spaghetti). When I started, I knew absolutely no Fortran.
    A little over a year later, I could do just about anything I needed to
    in it. I even did a bunch of F77-to-C++ interfacing. If you think
    that's sick, I have SWIG wrappers that allow you to call CERNLIB
    routines from perl and python.

    -- 
    Michael A. Marsh
    http://www.umiacs.umd.edu/~mmarsh
    -- 
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