Before You Buy Your SGI

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Re: Before You Buy Your SGI

Unread postby Adrenaline » Wed Apr 25, 2012 9:04 am

smj wrote:(Alright, I'll post what I started to tap out earlier and then thought better of.)

The CompSci faculty may not be involved in these projects, so the various CompSci fads may not be in play. At the same time people working on grant money are likely going to have to stretch it as far as possible - you may or may not be getting the top candidates who know they have other options.

For a long time now they've been teaching Java in Programming For Poets and CompSci 101 - I'm pretty far removed from the ivory tower to know if that's still the case, maybe they've shifted to C# or Haskell by now. But follow that through - any budding computational biologists are being taught Java, certainly not Tcl/Tk. And anybody likely to be hired as cheap student labor will know Java, and who knows what else. And you don't have to be a CompSci Ph.D to realize that somebody new will have to handle the code maintenance down the road, so if you try to convince them to write in some other language they're still likely to gravitate back to Java...

So I'm not surprised to hear that a lot of the projects (or front-ends) are written in Java. Or that they may not cleave to the highest standards of programming purity. ;)

My Senior Year in High School, the AP Test I took was the last C++ based one (back in 2003). The following year they were switching to Java.

Then my first 2 years of college were x86 DOS ASM/C/C++. And then when I transferred into University of Maryland, it had just transitioned into Java so I had to retake CS201 and CS202 since the 100 level classes were C++ based I got credit for the 100 & 200 classes I took at CC (annoying to say the least).

Funny enough UMD's CS program switches back to C++ for the later 300 and 400 level classes, while a few electives I took, CS3?? Game Programming was all Java based. The only class I actually got to use C# was in CS498, my Senior Project class, and that was only because me and this other student who were doing C# for a living took control of the project.
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Re: Before You Buy Your SGI

Unread postby smj » Thu Apr 26, 2012 2:07 am

Adrenaline wrote:... lots o' languages ...
Well as much of a pain as that sounds like it was to have your requirements shifting under you, it doesn't surprise me that you wind up hitting lots of different language systems as you pursue more CS courses. I think I hit DCL, sh/csh, C, Pascal, x86 assembler, LISP, Prolog, ISETL, and probably one or two I've forgotten, when I was chasing a degree in the second half of the 80s. The folks pursuing CompSci generally had a handful of languages they'd had to work with, and one or three they preferred.

I remember deciding not to take a software engineering course at UMass Amherst because they'd be using ADA. The UNIX/C complex was struggling for acceptance at the hippie dippie "experimental/alternative" college where I was enrolled down the road from The Zoo*. As a result I was more susceptible to a trend of dumping on ADA, especially in light of the US DoD mandate that it be used for everything, versus perhaps thinking that it was just a tool to use while learning the team-based development techniques the course was focused on... Ah, youth! ;)

Anyway I was thinking that nowadays you've got more people taking intro programming courses and thinking they can make a buck with it, so the candidate pool for the student-slave jobs is larger and the odds will tend to favor the intro languages du jour. Appreciate the snapshot of what those were more recently.

* UMass, aka Zoo Mass, hence The Zoo of fame, legend, and The Pixies
* Also: Yes, the irony of my radical hippie uber-Politically Correct college resisting UNIX/C in the form of BSD from radical hippie Free Speech Movement UC Berkeley... And in the end it was the bootstrapping of a computer music program that finally made it happen, so they could play with CSOUND on a VAX-11/750 that was donated to the school.
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Re: Before You Buy Your SGI

Unread postby hamei » Thu Apr 26, 2012 8:35 pm

smj wrote: ... in the end it was the bootstrapping of a computer music program that finally made it happen, so they could play with CSOUND on a VAX-11/750 that was donated to the school.

Let's donate them an Origin 300 and tell them all it needs is a web browser :P

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Re: Before You Buy Your SGI

Unread postby jan-jaap » Fri Apr 27, 2012 2:05 am

smj wrote:probably one or two I've forgotten, when I was chasing a degree in the second half of the 80s.

Modula3 :P

I had to take a 'programming process computers in C and assembly' course in the chemistry department to turn my knowledge of C into study points :roll:
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