APL Trivia 
Author Message
 APL Trivia

Hi,
   I would like to know what APL stands for
   and how did the name originate?

Thanks

D.Watkins



Sun, 25 Jan 1998 03:00:00 GMT  
 APL Trivia

Quote:

>   I would like to know what APL stands for
>   and how did the name originate?

APL means A Programming Language.
Most very early work was done by IBM.
Now there are many reliable vendors of APL products.
See the APL FAQ more a detail list of sources and references.
Hope this short explanation helps.  Harry Edwards


Sun, 25 Jan 1998 03:00:00 GMT  
 APL Trivia
"A Source Book of APL" is I believe the title of a publication which
contains much of the origins of APL, most of them a bit more technical
than the name. There was, briefly another APL, an acronym for other
words, and I won't confuse matters by trying to remember what they were.
Also the answer may be in the APL Trivial Pursuit cards produced for
APL86(?) in Manchester, England. I passed mine on, so can't check. Still
have my umbrella, though!
Mike Kingston .................


Mon, 26 Jan 1998 03:00:00 GMT  
 APL Trivia
:  
:
: APL means A Programming Language.

And "A Programming Language" is the title of the 1962 book by APL's
creator, Kenneth E. Iverson.

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Mon, 26 Jan 1998 03:00:00 GMT  
 APL Trivia

Dean Watkins writes on Wednesday, August 9:

Quote:
>  I would like to know what APL stands for
>   and how did the name originate?

An excellent and amusing description can be found in E.E. McDonnell's
introduction to "A Source Book in APL".  "APL" is an acronym of
the title of the book by K.E. Iverson, "A Programming Language",
Wiley, 1962, with the actual name coined by Adin Falkoff in mid 1966.  
Before that, it was known variously as "Iverson notation", "PAT"
(Personalized Array Translator), "IVSYS", "the notation", "it", etc.  
"APL" is pronounced A-P-L.

Both the American Heritage Dictionary (3rd edition) and the Random
House Dictionary (2nd edition) have an entry for APL, giving an
expansion of the acronym in the etymology.  American Heritage also
gives the correct pronunciation.



Mon, 26 Jan 1998 03:00:00 GMT  
 APL Trivia
q
-> Hi,
-> I would like to know what APL stands for
-> and how did the name originate?
->
-> Thanks
->
-> D.Watkins

further to the above question, my understanding is that K. Iverson wrote
a book in 1962 called "A Programming Language".  In this book he
proposed a notation but did not name it.  Some people at that time
called it "Iverson notation".

After a long story when it was implemented at IBM and the time came to
give the system a name, my understanding is that there was no agreement
on what to call it, so the name of the book was proposed, and the system
was called by the initials of that name, which seems reasonable.

I believe the specific suggestion to do this can be traced to a
particular person, but since I was not there, I cannot say for sure.
Perhaps someone knows the answer to that one.



Tue, 27 Jan 1998 03:00:00 GMT  
 APL Trivia

says...
Quote:

>Hi,
>   I would like to know what APL stands for
>   and how did the name originate?

>Thanks

>D.Watkins

Once upon a time (%T) APL was known simply as Iverson Notation,
although some preferred to use the acronym suggested by Iverson's
Better Math. There was a meeting in the mid 60's in which this
very problem was discussed. As I heard it, Adin Falkoff, taking
a cue from Iverson's book "A Programming Language", wrote the
letters APL on the blackboard, thought a minute, then said
"Apple, the language with appeal!" Anyway, it appears to have stuck.


Tue, 27 Jan 1998 03:00:00 GMT  
 APL Trivia
On the TV-tape "Origins of APL"  Larry Breed one of the six developers of
APL\360 indicated his support for the name of "Iverson's Better Math" for
the product.

John R. Clark
Prof Emeritus
Orange Coast College



Thu, 29 Jan 1998 03:00:00 GMT  
 APL Trivia
Well, it's "A Source Book in APL", published in 1981 by APL Press, ISBN
0-917326-10-5 and well worth reading. No mention of the answer to the
trivia question.
However, while visiting my bookshelf, I did turn up IBM Journal of
Research & Development Vol 25 No 5 September 1981. It mentions the IBM
Systems Journal (3 198-162 1964) article containing a formal description
in APL of the System/360 - remember it, can't find my copy. There's
mention of Ken Iverson's book containing similar for the 7090. Would like
a copy of the book, but left it too late to find one.
I'll look out some  more when I have time. Keep looking - the answer is
in print somewhere - I've seen it.
Mike Kingston .................


Sat, 31 Jan 1998 03:00:00 GMT  
 APL Trivia

Michael Kingston writes on Tuesday, August 15:

Quote:
> Well, it's "A Source Book in APL", published in 1981 by APL Press, ISBN
> 0-917326-10-5 and well worth reading. No mention of the answer to the
> trivia question.

The Source Book does answer the question, in the introduction
written by E.E. McDonnell, in the section entitled "A note on
the origins of "APL"".

Quote:
> However, while visiting my bookshelf, I did turn up IBM Journal of
> Research & Development Vol 25 No 5 September 1981. It mentions the IBM
> Systems Journal (3 198-162 1964) article containing a formal description
> in APL of the System/360 - remember it, can't find my copy. There's
> mention of Ken Iverson's book containing similar for the 7090. Would like
> a copy of the book, but left it too late to find one.

Chapter 2 of "A Programming Language" is entitled "Microprogramming",
and illustrates the concepts by a description of the IBM 7090 in
the notation that eventually became APL.

You may still be able to buy a copy of the book, an authorized,
high-quality facsimile in paperback made from a master copy of
the original, through Renaissance Data Systems.  The latest contact

posted here on 1995-01-17 by Ed Shaw:

Renaissance Data Systems
P.O. Box 421
Georgetown, CT  06829
United States of America




Sun, 01 Feb 1998 03:00:00 GMT  
 
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