[TUHS] PL/I stuff - was: Book Recommendation

George Michaelson ggm at algebras.org
Sat Nov 27 10:01:13 AEST 2021

I've always felt a huge disconnect between the decus tape philosophy of
code, and the IBM approach of "this software feature costs you more" about
things like language extensions and -O(n) flags (to use modern c compiler
mental models)

I did find the hardware trick of detuning the clock to sell more boxes and
charging to remove the resistors also a bit iffy but I kind of understood
it. But, being asked by some major client (defence) to implement recursion
support and then charging everyone feels like the business model designed
to kick start people cutting their own code to stop depending in yours -and
I believe this is somewhat the story of university multi access systems on
IBM and these seven dwarf competitors. Burroughs by comparison had (I am
told, I didn't use them) shit hot code, the kernel was in a ci/cd
deployment framework with smarts. And DEC had the decus tapes and
everything in VMS was on microfiche.

On Sat, 27 Nov 2021, 7:24 am John Cowan, <cowan at ccil.org> wrote:

> On Fri, Nov 26, 2021 at 3:32 PM Tom Ivar Helbekkmo via TUHS <
> tuhs at minnie.tuhs.org> wrote:
> Is there any relationship, other than pure coincidence, between this
>> naming scheme and DEC's F, G, and H floating point number formats?
> I don't think so.  The System/360 letters referred specifically to the
> amount of memory available, so a D compiler would run on a D machine with
> 256K, and E/F/G were 512K/1M/2M.
> The DEC floats were an extension of Fortran's exponent letters:  D=double,
> E=generic, F=single.  G is a variant of F with a different
> mantissa/exponent balance, and H is double double.   S and T floats came
> later and were bit-for-bit compatible with IEEE binary32 and binary64
> formats.  Lisp went a different way: to D, E, F they added S for small
> floats and L for large floats.
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