[Beowulf] A start in Parallel Programming?

Peter St. John peter.st.john at gmail.com
Tue Mar 13 10:33:50 PDT 2007

Brown Dai-Sensei-Sama,

Regarding "...Nobody knows why CPS departments no longer teach students to
code in C (and instead teach a bizarre mix of C++, java, lisp, and
god-knows-what else first -- at one time they just LOVED pascal and where is
THAT now I aske you), ..."

Pascal, C, C++, Java, and LISP are not 5 languages, really; let's say, they
are spanned by a lower dimensional basis set. They are really two languages
(C and LISP) with two (or more) conceptual paradigms (Procedural vs Object
Oriented, say). It would be insulting to say that PASCAL is merely C with
BEGIN, END instead of { and }, but...
So I think that CS departments just agree with me, that you understand
programming better if you learn two.

Re: FORTRAN, for awhile there we didn't really compile it, but translate it
to C and then invoke the C compiler. That gets you the beauty of the IMSL
libraries and the efficiency of very sharply maintained C compilers, at the
same time. Is there a good extant FORTRAN compiler? I wonder why, fortran is
easy to express in C (unlike conceptually variant languages, like APL or

I don't write in LISP myself (or ALGOL) but I respect it's expression of
conceptual frameworks that are awkward in C; LISP takes the von Neuman idea
of code segment within data segment to fruition, so the list of arguments
for a function may well be itself a function, since everything is a list. In
C, the address passed to a function might be the entry point of a function,
but you can't actually refer to that abstractly; although
printf("The entry point of \"printf\" is %x\n", printf);
will work unless your compiler is paranoid.
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://www.beowulf.org/pipermail/beowulf/attachments/20070313/5addf4b8/attachment.html>

More information about the Beowulf mailing list