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Re: Algol Front End


Excerpt of message (sent 6 May 2002) by Tony Stratton:
> I am interested in doing a front end project for one of the following languages list on your project page.
> 	Algol 60, Algol 68, PL/I, Cobol, Fortran 90, Delphi, Modula 2, Modula 3, RPG, 
> 
> I am leaning toward Algol 60 and/or 68, but I will not start before I hear from you.  If you can help me find a "definitive" reference on either Algol version, I can start.

Algol 60 is a rather small and very clean language.  Bob Dewar said
"probably > C" -- I would say smaller than C and certainly easier.
That would make a good starting point.  The reference is the "Revised
Report on Algol 60 (Backus, Naur, et al., 1962 or thereabouts)

One problem with Algol 60 is that the standard has NO I/O at all.
Various implementations have done their own extensions for this, in
very different ways.  There's the collections of procedures approach
in the THE implementation, and the vaguely Fortran-like one in
Burroughs Algol.

Algol 68 by contrast is a large and complex language -- still not as
nasty as PL/I but way above C and Pascal.  The rigorous reference is
the Revised Report; a very good starting point is the Informal
Introduction (revised edition).  Also, if you can get your hands on
the original Algol 68 Report (not the Revised one) that may help; its
formal description is slightly easier to cope with at first if you're
only going about half-way into the depths of the definition.  Then you
can switch to the Revised Report, that's the cleaned-up version of the
language.

	paul


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