Programming languages - now and then

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70 Replies - 10126 Views - Last Post: 25 July 2013 - 01:17 AM

#61 cfoley  Icon User is offline

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Re: Programming languages - now and then

Posted 26 June 2013 - 04:41 AM

Regex is a good example of a commonly used language that is not turing complete. You can describe some computations with it but not all.
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#62 jon.kiparsky  Icon User is online

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Re: Programming languages - now and then

Posted 26 June 2013 - 04:53 AM

View Postcfoley, on 26 June 2013 - 06:41 AM, said:

Regex is a good example of a commonly used language that is not turing complete. You can describe some computations with it but not all.



Very good example, but I think I've heard that some new flavors of regex are complete? I'm not sure about this one.
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#63 cfoley  Icon User is offline

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Re: Programming languages - now and then

Posted 26 June 2013 - 05:17 AM

Sounds like scope creep to me. Can you imagine the horror of regex meta programming?
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#64 AdamSpeight2008  Icon User is offline

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Re: Programming languages - now and then

Posted 26 June 2013 - 07:24 AM

View Postjon.kiparsky, on 26 June 2013 - 12:22 PM, said:

(markup languages, generally not)


HTML5 + CSS3 is turing complete.
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#65 jon.kiparsky  Icon User is online

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Re: Programming languages - now and then

Posted 26 June 2013 - 07:31 AM

Can you imagine the horror of regex meta programming? 


I'm imagining the horror of ordinary regex programming, but I can't really get beyond that for some reason.


Thinking about Turing on my ride in to work, it struck me - I don't think he thought about the completeness problem or what came to be called the Church-Turing Thesis very much at all after he turned 26. After that, he thought about all sorts of interesting things, but not in that area, as far as I can recall. Interesting character - Hodges' biography is worth reading, though it might be a little more hagiography than biography.

If you want to get a handle on Turing completeness, his paper On Computable Numbers is surprisingly readable. There are all sorts of glosses out there, but you may as well start with the man himself.
You might want to look at the Entscheidungsproblem - the "Decision Problem" - posed by Hilbert, which is what Turing was taking on with this paper.
https://en.wikipedia...heidungsproblem

View PostAdamSpeight2008, on 26 June 2013 - 09:24 AM, said:

View Postjon.kiparsky, on 26 June 2013 - 12:22 PM, said:

(markup languages, generally not)


HTML5 + CSS3 is turing complete.



See, you don't even need to be a programming language to be Turing complete.


(obvious troll is obviously trolling)
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#66 Bocard  Icon User is offline

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Re: Programming languages - now and then

Posted 28 June 2013 - 08:15 AM

My opinions:
1. java is used in too many places not to stay popular in the following years.

2. python will increase its popularity since it is easy to learn and it is taught in universities in a lot of the cs courses nowadays.

3. javascript will evolve a lot. Key words here being: mobile apps, new frameworks, server-side (node.js and such).
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#67 irneb  Icon User is offline

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Re: Programming languages - now and then

Posted 28 June 2013 - 10:35 PM

View PostBocard, on 28 June 2013 - 08:15 AM, said:

My opinions:
1. java is used in too many places not to stay popular in the following years.
You mean like Cobol! :whatsthat:/> ... it's there that's why we're still using it. Jokes aside though, I think you're correct here. It's nigh on impossible to simply drop old source code, no matter how much you might dislike a language. And due to the industry being sooo competitive, doing a translate exercise is not something any company is willing to pay for in time or money.

Java is probably an edge-case though, since a lot of other languages have been implemented to work direct inside the JVM. So it's possible to use the old code and extend / modify it using one (or more) of many (like Clojure, Groovy, Scala, JRuby, Jython, etc.).

View PostBocard, on 28 June 2013 - 08:15 AM, said:

2. python will increase its popularity since it is easy to learn and it is taught in universities in a lot of the cs courses nowadays.
Probably true as well, but to a much lesser extent. I mean Pascal never got to become as main-stream in the early '90s, even though it was the main training language at the time. Though Delphi did have a bit of a run at the end of the '90s / early '00s.

View PostBocard, on 28 June 2013 - 08:15 AM, said:

3. javascript will evolve a lot. Key words here being: mobile apps, new frameworks, server-side (node.js and such).
True. JS is even used as an add-on language for stuff like Firefox/Thunderbird. I wonder if JS is going to take over where Java left off - i.e. write once, run everywhere. I think that's the main reason industry likes it, especially with the latest set of frameworks/libs available (no need to re-invent the wheel).

Apart from that I don't think the "traditional" C++ is going to die in the near future. Too many existing stuff are still written in it. And with the latest 2011 revisions it's clear that the C++ community's not dead by a long shot - they've got the "evolve or die" licked it seems. It's still the go-to lang for any systems code, not that it's a prerequisite, just the one used more often than not (many reasons for this).

As for Lisp, those who've actually used it tend to like it over everything else. It's still the most comprehensive I've seen. True, there are other langs with similar concepts, but few (if any) where all these concepts are so seamlessly incorporated in one lang. The problem with Lisp (as I see it) is twofold:
  • The "parentheses" are still a barrier to entry (no matter how silly I think such a statement may be)
  • Just what Lisp are you using, off the cuff: Scheme / CL / other, and then even after that what implementation.

In that sense its greatest (IMO) pro (its maturity) is also one of its cons: due to its maturity so many different versions are available. E.g. being proficient in newLISP isn't going to make you a maestro in CLisp, which in turn isn't fully transferable to Coljure, etc.etc.etc.
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#68 Lemur  Icon User is offline

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Re: Programming languages - now and then

Posted 29 June 2013 - 12:14 AM

Algol is one of the most mature languages, with its many dialects like C, Python, Perl, Java, and the rest.

When people say aren't they all LISPs I tend to think of that rather quickly. To me it's effectively comparable. They're near completely different languages from a completely different spectrum of programming.
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#69 andrewsw  Icon User is online

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Re: Programming languages - now and then

Posted 29 June 2013 - 03:45 AM

:offtopic:
Algol was available on the 380Z computer at school. I wanted to explore it but I didn't have a book, or the internet :whatsthat: There was a primitive (command-line) help system, so I spent my time trying to guess what a keyword might be :helpsmilie: It was a little.. painful.

Kids these days don't know how lucky they are :bigsmile:
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#70 jon.kiparsky  Icon User is online

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Re: Programming languages - now and then

Posted 29 June 2013 - 08:30 AM

View PostLemur, on 29 June 2013 - 02:14 AM, said:

Algol is one of the most mature languages, with its many dialects like C, Python, Perl, Java, and the rest.

When people say aren't they all LISPs I tend to think of that rather quickly. To me it's effectively comparable. They're near completely different languages from a completely different spectrum of programming.



Funnily enough, Lisp was originally intended to have an Algol syntax. The s-expressions were meant to be purely for internal representation - but people started writing programs with them, and nobody ever got around to writing "the real language".

Keep that in mind the next time you hear someone complaining about the parentheses - yeah, buddy, if you don't like 'em, just finish the language! :)
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#71 irneb  Icon User is offline

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Re: Programming languages - now and then

Posted 25 July 2013 - 01:17 AM

View Postjon.kiparsky, on 29 June 2013 - 08:30 AM, said:

Funnily enough, Lisp was originally intended to have an Algol syntax. The s-expressions were meant to be purely for internal representation - but people started writing programs with them, and nobody ever got around to writing "the real language".

True, I think I read somewhere that John McCarthy (the original "Lishper") intended to design something called M-Expressions which would be much more similar to the Algol syntax. But later found it too much effort to make something which seemed unnecessary.

Ah! Here it is: http://c2.com/cgi/wiki?EmExpressions
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