Pascal not considered harmful - was Re: Rich kids are into COBOL

Chuck Guzis cclist at
Fri Feb 20 01:35:36 CST 2015

On 02/19/2015 08:23 PM, Guy Sotomayor wrote:

> Nope.  It was (and still is) how I write code (sit down and compose at
> the keyboard).  One of my old bosses at IBM once said "Yea, Guy just
> waves his hands over the keyboard and programs come out".

That would have been impossible in my case, unless I had the most 
prodigious eidetic memory in history.

Writing code almost always involved using an on-disk or -tape source 
code library.  Even if it was new code, there were significant 
advantages to creating a library then modifying it as one progressed.

One would typically work with a bound listing or listings and work out 
the control system directives to update the existing code base. 
Remember, this was in the day of batch processing with almost no access 
to terminals.  Everything happened on the keypunch.

So for one to remember all of the correction set IDs and sequence 
numbers for a group of programs or system programs would be more than 
impressive--it'd probably merit a vivisection.

Here was one SCCS utility, UPDATE, used at CDC:

Another was MODIFY, used on KRONOS, but basically the same functionality 

So IBM had no SCCS for their system code?  That's mind-boggling.


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