PL/I Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) 
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 PL/I Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Summary: This posting contains a list of Frequently Asked
        Questions (and their answers) about PL/I --
        Programming Language One.  It should be read by anyone
        wanting to read the newsgroup comp.lang.pl1.
        It is of interest to anyone wanting to read any
        of the comp.lang.* newsgroups.

Posting-Frequency: three-monthly (Jan Apr Jul Oct)
Last-Modified: 9 July 2001
Version: 1.22

                FREQUENTLY-ASKED QUESTIONS & ANSWERS
.
(Q1) What is PL/I?
.
     PL/I is a general-purpose programming language, which
     is used for solving problems in a variety of fields
     such as commerce, science (including mathematics,
     physics, chemistry), engineering (incl. civil, electrical,
     aeronautics), medicine and so on.  It can be used for
     system programming, and the facilitites are such that
     it is rarely if ever necessary to resort to machine-language
     or assembly-language programming to solve problems.
.
     PL/I has outstanding facilities for commercial and business use.
.
     It has more power than Pascal, fortran 90, BASIC, C, and
     COBOL, and has comparable facilities to Ada.
     The main areas where PL/I is superior include interrupt
     handling, the built-in debugging aids, the macro
     processor facilities, string-handling and input-output
     (see below).
.
     The language has good documenting and self-documenting
     facilities;  programs are easy to read and to understand.
     It bears some resemblance to Fortran and BASIC.
.
     The language is suitable for beginners, as well as for
     anyone wanting to become a professional.
.
     There's a summary of what you'll find in PL/I at:
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        http://www.*-*-*.com/
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    or a slightly truncated version at:
.
        http://www.*-*-*.com/
.
(Q2) On what systems is it available?
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     PL/I is available on at least the following systems:
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        IBM PC and compatibles (80x86).
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        *  IBM VisualAge PL/I for OS/2: is available in 2 versions:
                Personal Edition        }
                Professional Edition    } Details at the bottom of this posting
                accompanied by the
                live editor LPEX
                ---available from IBM
.
        *  Liant Open PL/I, for 80x86 & Pentium running UNIX SVR3 and SVR4
                ---available from Liant Software Corporation,
                959 Concord Street,
                Framingham, MA 01701-4613,
                Tel. (508) 872-8700, Fax (508) 626-2221
                (their PL/I generally is available on Unix-based systems)
.
        * Windows NT -- available from Liant Software Corporation.
.
        * Windows NT -- available from IBM as VisualAge PL/I, with the
                live parsing editor LPEX.
.
        * DOS -- the original Digital Research PL/I for DOS.  Available
                from Discus Distributiuons at:
                http://www.*-*-*.com/ ~nalcott/
.
        IBM AS/400
                --- available from IBM.
.
        IBM mainframes
                --- available from IBM.
                --- available as IBM VisualAge PL/I under OS/390.
        HP 9000 HP-UX
                --- available from Liant Software Corporation
.
        SPARC SunOS 4.x, Solaris 2.x
                --- available from Liant Software Corporation
.
        IBM RS/6000 AIX
                --- available from Liant Software Corporation (address above);
                --- also available from IBM as VisualAge PL/I.
.
        Data General AViiON with DG-UX
                --- available from Liant Software Corporation
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        Compaq (formerly Digital Equipment Corporation) on Open VMS and Alpha
           AXP systems (Tru64 Unix)
                ---The compilers from Kednos Corporation for these systems are
                   called "PL/I for Open VMS" and "PL/I for Tru64 Unix"
                   respectively.  They took over support for PL/I from UniPrise.
.
                Check out the compiler at
                <A HREF = " http://www.*-*-*.com/ ;> UniPrise Corporation </A>.
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       Stratus Computer, Inc. under VOS on all their systems except AX/R-S.
                --- available from Stratus Computer, Inc.
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       Wang/Getronics systems.  Recent updates make the compiler Y2K compliant.
                --- available from Wang Laboratories, Billerica, Mass.
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       Fujitsu-Siemens BS2000 system.
                --- visit them at:
                http://www.*-*-*.com/
                where you can download a specification brochure in PDF format.
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(Q3) How can I try out PL/I?
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        Why not try out the demo copy at:
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        ftp://ftp.software.ibm.com/ps/products/pli/demos/
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        There's also the original Digital Research PL/I for DOS at:
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        http://www.*-*-*.com/ ~cfs/cpm
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        It's a subset of PL/I, of course, because it had to fit
        in 64K originally (I think).  There's the original manual too,
        in MS Word 6 format, but as it's been scanned, it is incomplete.
        Without an actual manual, I've taken it about as far as I can.
        The PL/I Reference Manual is in Microsoft Word 6 format, zipped at:
.
        http://www.*-*-*.com/
.
        If that mirror site is down, you could try to link to the main site at:
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        http://www.*-*-*.com/
.
        but as there have been problems connecting to it, don't count on it.
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        Find the PCDOS section, and then check out DOWNLOADS.
.
        Be sure to download the utilities (including the linker)
        as well as the compiler and sample codes.
.
        You'll also need the compiler flags to use it, at:
.
        http://www.*-*-*.com/
.
        It you want the CP/M-86 PL/I compiler, go to the same site
        as mentioned above, and go to the PCDOS section, check out
        DOWNLOADS, and the CP/M-86 section.
.
        You can purchase IBM's Personal PL/I compiler online amd download
        it in the USA only.  Cost is $115 U.S.
.
        To order the compiler from IBM, go to:
.
                http://www.*-*-*.com/
.
        Select "Software", then select "Application Development", then
        select "Personal PL/I" from the pull-down list.
.
(Q4) What do the compilers provide?</H3>
.
        All compilers provide enhanced versions of the ANSI standard
        (the IBM AS/400 adheres to SAA rules, and DR PL/I implements
        the subset G).  There's a
        summary of what you'll find in PL/I at:
.
        http://www.*-*-*.com/
.
        Example PL/I source code, to implement the new built-in functions
        (on non-OS/2, non-IBM-Windows and non-AIX systems) for:
.
        The SEARCH built-in function:
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                http://www.*-*-*.com/
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        The SEARCHR built-in function at:
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                http://www.*-*-*.com/
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        and the VERIFY (3 argument version) and VERIFYR built-in functions at:
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                http://www.*-*-*.com/
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        (these are in plain text form).
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        Further PL/I examples of a tutorial nature are an
.
                http://www.*-*-*.com/
.
        (an insertion sort), and a
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        http://www.*-*-*.com/
.
        (a linked list creation procedure (under construction)).
.
        In each case, click on the keywords for an explanation.
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        In the cases of IBM VisualAge PL/I for OS/2, PL/I set for AIX,
        Windows NT, and OS/390 some important new language features are
        provided and include:
.
        (a) strongly-typed list processing in which the pointers
            (handles) are bound to the structures with which they
            are linked;
        (b) ordinals;
        (c) user-defined types;
        (d) Unsigned integer type;
        (e) New DO loop options that cause the loop to
            terminate without overrunning the limit (specifically
            for ordinals and unsigned integers); and
        (f) A much-enhanced macro-processor.
        (g) Initial support for wide character set, enabling such files to be
            read and written.  A number of new built-in functions for
            wide characters is provided.
.
        (this is not an exhaustive list)
        There are also some 120 new built-in functions, including
        extra-special DATE/TIME functions, string-handling
        functions, housekeeping functions (e.g.,
        where-am-I-called-from?), and ordinal functions
        (including a function to supply the name of an ordinal!).
.
(Q5) What textbooks are available?
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        Some of the best include:
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           R.A. Barnes,     PL/I for Programmers, North-Holland, 1979.
           J.K. Hughes,     PL/I Structured Programming, 3rd Ed., Wiley, 1986.
           G.F. Groner,     PL/I Programming in Technological Applications,
                            Books on Demand, Ann Arbor, MI, 1971.
           M.E. Anderson,   PL/I for Programmers, Prentice-Hall, 1973.
           D.R. Stoutemyer, PL/I Programming for Engineering & Science,
                             Prentice-Hall, 1971.
           R. Reddy & C. Ziegler, PL/I: Structured Programming and
                             Problem Solving, West, 1986, ISBN 0-314-93915-6.
                             Check out the Table of Contents:
                                http://www.*-*-*.com/
           E. Sturm, PL/I fuer Workstations
                                (in German language), 4th Ed.,
                                Vieweg-Verlag (1999)
                                about 278 pages, ISBN: 3-528-34792-9.
                See the table of contents at:
                    http://www.*-*-*.com/
.
           R. A. Vowels, http://www.*-*-*.com/
                             Introduction to PL/I, Algorithms, and
                             Structured Programming, 3rd revised Ed., 1998,
                             ISBN 0-9596384-9-0. 600+ pages, A4 size.
                             See a list of the main algorithms at:
                                http://www.*-*-*.com/
                             Comes with a disc containing all the programs,
                             procedures, and functions from the book.  The
                             disc was first published in October 1996, and
                             was last updated in April 2001.
.
        The following are good PL/I reference manuals. (The
        new facilities of PL/I for OS/2 are highlighted.  Therefore
        you can use these manuals as references on either mainframe or PC system.)
.
        IBM, PL/I for OS/2: Language Reference, 1994 edition
        IBM, PL/I for OS/2: Built-in Functions, 1994 edition
        IBM, VisualAge PL/I Language Reference, Version 2.1, 1998 edition.
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(Q6) Is there a newsletter?
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        Yes.
        The September 2000 issue of "The PL/I Newsletter" is viewable at:
                http://www.*-*-*.com/
        You may douwnload the July 2000 issue from:
                http://www.*-*-*.com/
.
        The COBOL and PL/I Newsletter is at:
                http://www.*-*-*.com/ ;
.
        To see recent
...

read more »



Mon, 05 Jan 2004 08:54:25 GMT  
 PL/I Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)


Quote:
> Summary: This posting contains a list of Frequently Asked
> Questions (and their answers) about PL/I --
> .
>      PL/I is available on at least the following systems:
> .
> IBM PC and compatibles (80x86).
> .
>         *  IBM VisualAge PL/I for OS/2: is available in 2 versions:
> Personal Edition }
> Professional Edition } Details at the bottom of this posting
> accompanied by the
> live editor LPEX
> ---available from IBM
> .

Robin,  I dont see the Personal Edition offered,  (the header says its
avail.,  but only order info for NT is shown)


Mon, 05 Jan 2004 23:21:38 GMT  
 PL/I Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
1. IBM Personal PL/I for OS/2 has been withdrawn.

2. The new builtin functions are also available on OS/390 (z/OS).


Quote:
>         *  IBM VisualAge PL/I for OS/2: is available in 2 versions:
> Personal Edition }
> Professional Edition } Details at the bottom of this posting
> accompanied by the live editor LPEX
> ---available from IBM
> .
> .
> Example PL/I source code, to implement the new built-in functions
> (on non-OS/2, non-IBM-Windows and non-AIX systems) for:
> .



Tue, 06 Jan 2004 13:51:25 GMT  
 PL/I Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Quote:

> 2. The new builtin functions are also available on OS/390 (z/OS).

Only in VisualAge product.  They are not available otherwise,
and if one is using the traditional product, then the routines could be
of use.


Tue, 06 Jan 2004 23:45:31 GMT  
 PL/I Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Quote:

> 2. The new builtin functions are also available on OS/390 (z/OS).


> > Example PL/I source code, to implement the new built-in functions
> > (on non-OS/2, non-IBM-Windows and non-AIX systems) for:

This is one that slipped thru the cracks.
Elsewhere in the posting it says that VisualAge PL/I is on OS/390.

Thanks for the feedback.



Thu, 08 Jan 2004 11:52:13 GMT  
 
 [ 5 post ] 

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