Structured Fortran - was Re: Self modifying code, lambda calculus

Jon Elson elson at
Tue Sep 22 20:31:29 CDT 2015

On 09/22/2015 03:49 PM, Diane Bruce wrote:
> On Tue, Sep 22, 2015 at 04:35:24PM -0400, Paul Koning wrote:
>>> And Unix was no different, 'C' started out as a Fortran compiler.
>> Really?  "citation needed".
OK, Paul needed to read more closely.  (Think I got the 
attribution right...)
This is Dennis Ritchie speaking about Ken Thompson:

    Anyway, it took him about a day to realize that he
    didn't want to do a Fortran compiler at all. So he did
    this very simple language called B and got it going on
    the PDP-7.

So, B was never actually a FORTRAN compiler, just Ken 
started thinking about FORTRAN grammar and within one DAY 
took off in a different direction.   By that time (1969 or 
so) FORTRAN was a really old language, and considered way 
out of date by most universities' Comp Sci departments.


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