The APL Character Set and APL Usage 
Author Message
 The APL Character Set and APL Usage

If indeed, as is often suggested, the use of a special character set was a
major factor in discouraging the use of APL, why is it that in the late
seventies and early eighties, when a special APL input/display device was
a necessity, and before an ASCII based variant such as J was available,
the attendance at the APL conferences was about fivefold that which it is
today.

--



Sun, 16 Apr 2000 03:00:00 GMT  
 The APL Character Set and APL Usage

Anybody ever look at the back of IBM's PC model 1?  The model number on
the back included 5100.

I wonder what the PC world would look like if IBM had chosed to keep the
APL character set on the PC?

Don Guinn



Mon, 17 Apr 2000 03:00:00 GMT  
 The APL Character Set and APL Usage

Quote:

> If indeed, as is often suggested, the use of a special character set was a
> major factor in discouraging the use of APL, why is it that in the late
> seventies and early eighties, when a special APL input/display device was
> a necessity, and before an ASCII based variant such as J was available,
> the attendance at the APL conferences was about fivefold that which it is
> today.

I give up.

More seriously, I suspect that there are several reasons for this. A few of
them might be:

- Other products (Matlab, spreadsheets, e.g.,) taking some of APLs user
  population away.

- Fewer bucks for conferences

What I'm trying to suggest is that if APL had used ASCII in the dark ages,
then
perhaps:

 - APL would have been adopted by a much larger community
 - the concepts of APL would have made a much larger impact on
   the programming language design community.



Mon, 17 Apr 2000 03:00:00 GMT  
 The APL Character Set and APL Usage

If we take conference attendance as an indicator popularity, APL interest
peaked in the early eighties. This was when low cost microcomputers were
first being seriously received. These computers tended to come with a free
Basic interpreter in ROM. How different would things be today if those
interpreters had been for APL instead?

--



Mon, 17 Apr 2000 03:00:00 GMT  
 The APL Character Set and APL Usage



Quote:
> How different would things be today if those
> interpreters had been for APL instead?

This was heavily advocated by a poster-submitter to APL89 New York (I
forgot his name, he is not in the proceedings either). The title of his
poster was "Bring APL to the chip!" and he did his talk like a guide in a
museum: in front of his poster towards passing by attendees.


Tue, 18 Apr 2000 03:00:00 GMT  
 The APL Character Set and APL Usage


        >  If we take conference attendance as an indicator popularity, APL interest

Quote:
> peaked in the early eighties. This was when low cost microcomputers were
> first being seriously received. These computers tended to come with a free
> Basic interpreter in ROM. How different would things be today if those
> interpreters had been for APL instead?

The interest for J is growing and the interest for J on Linux is probably
going to be even more than what it is now for Wxx based J.

So because J is also APL then your statement about the peak is far off.

/Gosi
--



Tue, 18 Apr 2000 03:00:00 GMT  
 The APL Character Set and APL Usage


[snip]

Quote:

> The interest for J is growing and the interest for J on Linux is probably
> going to be even more than what it is now for Wxx based J.

> So because J is also APL then your statement about the peak is far off.

[snip]

The 1983 APL conference in Washington D.C., perhaps the most attended of
all APL conferences, attracted in the range of a thousand attendees and
over forty exhibitors. The 1996 APL conference in Lancaster had around two
hundred attendees and at best six exhibitors. Even with, as Gosi suggests,
increased interest in J, this hardly suggests that one is "far off" in
stating that APL interest peaked in the early eighties. As far as the
suggestion that "J is also APL", I have as much difficulty accepting that
as I would the suggestion that "Java is also C++".

--



Tue, 18 Apr 2000 03:00:00 GMT  
 The APL Character Set and APL Usage

Probably just the way it does now.  I worked on a 5110.  You could play with
APL or reboot and use as corporate machine running basic with "real business
applications".  I had pretty much the same problem with PC ..... windows or
APL.  In my mind it is only in the past couple of years that APL has finally
integrated into a PC environment.  If you wish to be nostalgic, I sort of
miss the APL ROM that STSC used to provide.
Brent

Quote:

>Anybody ever look at the back of IBM's PC model 1?  The model number on
>the back included 5100.

>I wonder what the PC world would look like if IBM had chosed to keep the
>APL character set on the PC?

>Don Guinn




Wed, 19 Apr 2000 03:00:00 GMT  
 The APL Character Set and APL Usage

I must have missed something. What would have been accomplished if
APL had been `on the chip', and how---pray---does anyone think it
might have mattered?

Quote:



> > How different would things be today if those
> > interpreters had been for APL instead?

> This was heavily advocated by a poster-submitter to APL89 New York (I
> forgot his name, he is not in the proceedings either). The title of his
> poster was "Bring APL to the chip!" and he did his talk like a guide in a
> museum: in front of his poster towards passing by attendees.



Wed, 19 Apr 2000 03:00:00 GMT  
 
 [ 13 post ] 

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