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"Team Ada: Ada Advocacy Issues (83 & 95)" <[log in to unmask]>
Mon, 21 Aug 2000 20:51:42 -0400
Michael Feldman <[log in to unmask]>
Michael Feldman <[log in to unmask]>
<a0432040bb5c779fd87e5@[]> from "jim hopper" at Aug 21, 2000 07:32:04 PM
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[Jim answered Wes]
> >
> >I don't know.  Apple started out with Pascal.  I don't know how much they've
> >shifted to C, but there's probably a correlation.
> >
> For what its worth Apple originally wanted to go with Ada as their
> main high level language when they transitioned from asm.  But they
> could not get any of the ada vendors interested in doing a compiler
> for mac.  eventually they did but it was to late apple had already
> gone with pascal by that time.  i got this from one of the original
> development team.
> jim

Interesting! I hadn't heard that one. Just one of a long sad string
of Ada's missed opportunities. As I've said many times, Mac folks
and Ada folks ought to be natural allies, because both groups are
underdogs. But the main Apple and Ada developers have mostly just
pointed to each other and said "not interested, small market."

It's even more ironic that in the very early 80s when Apple got
started with Lisa, which led to Mac, Microsoft's influence was much
more limited. There was MS-DOS, and some old ROM Basic's in the 8-bit
machines like Atari 800s. But Windows was years away and Word was
hardly a gleam in Gates' eye. It's too bad Ada didn't get in on the
ground floor of that one.

There are lots of interesting historical ties between Ada and Pascal
(beyond the obvious syntactic ones): for example, one of the very
earliest Ada compilers (for a decent subset of Ada 83)
came from TeleSoft, and was, essentially, a modification of UCSD
Pascal. Not surprising, as Ken Bowles was a TeleSoft founder.

UCSD Pascal was ported to lots of micro platforms at the time,
and was the first language beyond MS-BASIC to appear on the IBM PC.
It was also on the Apple ][.

UCSD Pascal compiled to "P-code", of course, which was executed on
the P-machine interpreter. Java was NOT the first virtual machine
by a long shot (neither was UCSD Pascal, but that is another story...).

Well, back to the (non-)subject. AFAIK Apple is now pretty much stuck
in C/C++, for new code anyway.

Since OS X is based on NextOS, and Next used Objective-C for pretty
much everything, I wonder how much Objective C there is in OS X?

Mike Feldman