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3 definitions found
 for Pascal
From WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006) :

  pascal
      n 1: a unit of pressure equal to one newton per square meter
           [syn: pascal, Pa]
      2: French mathematician and philosopher and Jansenist; invented
         an adding machine; contributed (with Fermat) to the theory of
         probability (1623-1662) [syn: Pascal, Blaise Pascal]
      3: a programing language designed to teach programming through a
         top-down modular approach

From The Jargon File (version 4.4.7, 29 Dec 2003) :

  Pascal
   n.
  
      An Algol-descended language designed by Niklaus Wirth on the CDC 6600
      around 1967--68 as an instructional tool for elementary programming. This
      language, designed primarily to keep students from shooting themselves in
      the foot and thus extremely restrictive from a general-purpose-programming
      point of view, was later promoted as a general-purpose tool and, in fact,
      became the ancestor of a large family of languages including Modula-2 and
      Ada (see also bondage-and-discipline language). The hackish point of view
      on Pascal was probably best summed up by a devastating (and, in its deadpan
      way, screamingly funny) 1981 paper by Brian Kernighan (of K&R fame)
      entitled Why Pascal is Not My Favorite Programming Language, which was
      turned down by the technical journals but circulated widely via
      photocopies. It was eventually published in Comparing and Assessing
      Programming Languages, edited by Alan Feuer and Narain Gehani
      (Prentice-Hall, 1984). Part of his discussion is worth repeating here,
      because its criticisms are still apposite to Pascal itself after many years
      of improvement and could also stand as an indictment of many other
      bondage-and-discipline languages. (The entire essay is available at http://
      www.lysator.liu.se/c/bwk-on-pascal.html.) At the end of a summary of the
      case against Pascal, Kernighan wrote:
  
          9. There is no escape
  
          This last point is perhaps the most important. The language is
          inadequate but circumscribed, because there is no way to escape its
          limitations. There are no casts to disable the type-checking when
          necessary. There is no way to replace the defective run-time
          environment with a sensible one, unless one controls the compiler that
          defines the ?standard procedures?. The language is closed.
  
          People who use Pascal for serious programming fall into a fatal trap.
          Because the language is impotent, it must be extended. But each group
          extends Pascal in its own direction, to make it look like whatever
          language they really want. Extensions for separate compilation,
          FORTRAN-like COMMON, string data types, internal static variables,
          initialization, octal numbers, bit operators, etc., all add to the
          utility of the language for one group but destroy its portability to
          others.
  
          I feel that it is a mistake to use Pascal for anything much beyond its
          original target. In its pure form, Pascal is a toy language, suitable
          for teaching but not for real programming.
  
      Pascal has since been entirely displaced (mainly by C) from the niches it
      had acquired in serious applications and systems programming, and from its
      role as a teaching language by Java.
  

From The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing (18 March 2015) :

  Pascal
  
      (After the French mathematician Blaise Pascal
     (1623-1662)) A programming language designed by Niklaus
     Wirth around 1970.  Pascal was designed for simplicity and
     for teaching programming, in reaction to the complexity of
     ALGOL 68.  It emphasises structured programming
     constructs, data structures and strong typing. Innovations
     included enumeration types, subranges, sets, variant
     records, and the case statement.  Pascal has been extremely
     influential in programming language design and has a great
     number of variants and descendants.
  
     ANSI/IEEE770X3.97-1993 is very similar to ISO Pascal but
     does not include conformant arrays.
  
     ISO 7185-1983(E).  Level 0 and Level 1.  Changes from Jensen &
     Wirth's Pascal include name equivalence; names must be bound
     before they are used; loop index must be local to the
     procedure; formal procedure parameters must include their
     arguments; conformant array schemas.
  
     An ALGOL-descended language designed by Niklaus Wirth on the
     CDC 6600 around 1967--68 as an instructional tool for
     elementary programming.  This language, designed primarily to
     keep students from shooting themselves in the foot and thus
     extremely restrictive from a general-purpose-programming point
     of view, was later promoted as a general-purpose tool and, in
     fact, became the ancestor of a large family of languages
     including Modula-2 and Ada (see also bondage-and-discipline
     language).  The hackish point of view on Pascal was probably
     best summed up by a devastating (and, in its deadpan way,
     screamingly funny) 1981 paper by Brian Kernighan (of K&R
     fame) entitled "Why Pascal is Not My Favourite Programming
     Language", which was turned down by the technical journals but
     circulated widely via photocopies.  It was eventually
     published in "Comparing and Assessing Programming Languages",
     edited by Alan Feuer and Narain Gehani (Prentice-Hall, 1984).
     Part of his discussion is worth repeating here, because its
     criticisms are still apposite to Pascal itself after ten years
     of improvement and could also stand as an indictment of many
     other bondage-and-discipline languages.  At the end of a
     summary of the case against Pascal, Kernighan wrote:
  
     9. There is no escape
  
     This last point is perhaps the most important.  The language
     is inadequate but circumscribed, because there is no way to
     escape its limitations.  There are no casts to disable the
     type-checking when necessary.  There is no way to replace the
     defective run-time environment with a sensible one, unless one
     controls the compiler that defines the "standard procedures".
     The language is closed.
  
     People who use Pascal for serious programming fall into a
     fatal trap.  Because the language is impotent, it must be
     extended.  But each group extends Pascal in its own direction,
     to make it look like whatever language they really want.
     Extensions for separate compilation, Fortran-like COMMON,
     string data types, internal static variables, initialisation,
     octal numbers, bit operators, etc., all add to the utility
     of the language for one group but destroy its portability to
     others.
  
     I feel that it is a mistake to use Pascal for anything much
     beyond its original target.  In its pure form, Pascal is a toy
     language, suitable for teaching but not for real programming.
  
     Pascal has since been almost entirely displaced (by C) from
     the niches it had acquired in serious applications and systems
     programming, but retains some popularity as a hobbyist
     language in the MS-DOS and Macintosh worlds.
  
     See also Kamin's interpreters, p2c.
  
     ["The Programming Language Pascal", N. Wirth, Acta Informatica
     1:35-63, 1971].
  
     ["PASCAL User Manual and Report", K. Jensen & N. Wirth,
     Springer 1975] made significant revisions to the language.
  
     [BS 6192, "Specification for Computer Programming Language
     Pascal", British Standards Institute 1982].
  
     [{Jargon File]
  
     (1996-06-12)
  

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