Programmer's conundrums

Don Y dgy at DakotaCom.Net
Tue Apr 4 12:04:26 CDT 2006


Brad Parker wrote:
> Don Y wrote:
>> The code in the gasoline pump up the corner was written in
>> assembly language (unfortunately... it was the perfect
>> application to move to a HLL but...  :< ).
> 
> depends on the pump.  and the box inside the office which monitors all
> the pumps and reports (via the internet) on the tank gauges runs linux
> :-)

Exactly.  And the code in that application is likely to be revised.
The code in your microwave oven, isn't!

>> Thankfully, most HLL's make bit-banging really difficult.
> 
> i disagree.  i've managed (with others) to get C to be so close to asm
> that asm wasn't worth it.

Great!  Here are 256 bytes of ram.  Design and implement
a LORAN-C position plotter in C.  It has to process data in real
time (i.e. maybe 1.5 updates per second), run on a *3* MHz CPU
and you have 10KB for TEXT.

And, that's a "bountiful" work environment!

I envy you the clients that give you that much leeway.
When I am done, a client usually wants to know how to trim
even MORE out of the design (I'm looking at a $20 design
now that needs to be a $15 design... and the list of added
functions is several pages long!  Hmmm, I wonder how much
I can save by taking the FOILS off the board?? Or, the leads
off the resistors?? :<)

> and bit banging in lisp is really nice.
> 
> so, ok, BASIC is a pain.

Doing decimal arithmetic in C sucks.  As does trying to pack
8 bools to a byte (and access them efficiently), etc. Loss
of the carry is probably the biggest single pisser in most HLLs.

<shrug>  Horses for courses...

--don



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