Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 34, No. 76. Department of Digital Humanities, King's College London Hosted by King's Digital Lab www.dhhumanist.org Submit to: firstname.lastname@example.org Date: 2020-06-01 09:26:47+00:00 From: Willard McCarty
Subject: hardware architecture and programming style Robert Sebestra, in Concepts of Programming Languages (11th edn, 2016), makes the case that the imperative style of programming characteristic of most languages now in use is more or less determined by the so-called von Neumann architecture of hardware common to our machines. Other styles, notably the functional one pioneered by McCarthy in Lisp, can be accommodated by translating them via a compiler or interpreter into imperative code. A number of early comparisons of software with mathematics draw the distinction based on the outgrown characterisation of the former as imperative, noting that the latter is descriptive. Still there's the von Neumann structure to keep the distinction alive. Promises of other architectures are not difficult to find. Is it reasonable to expect a very different relationship between software and mathematics that would result if these alternative architectures were widely available? Those here who know what I am talking about must be able to spot the muddle I'd very much like to find a way out of. Is clear guidance to be had? As with any issue involving up-to-the-minute technological progress, the swarm of promises makes getting out of muddles difficult. All help appreciated, esp if it comes as reference to credible publications. Many thanks. Yours, WM -- Willard McCarty (www.mccarty.org.uk/), Professor emeritus, Department of Digital Humanities, King's College London; Editor, Interdisciplinary Science Reviews (www.tandfonline.com/loi/yisr20) and Humanist (www.dhhumanist.org) _______________________________________________ Unsubscribe at: http://dhhumanist.org/Restricted List posts to: email@example.com List info and archives at at: http://dhhumanist.org Listmember interface at: http://dhhumanist.org/Restricted/ Subscribe at: http://dhhumanist.org/membership_form.php
Editor: Willard McCarty (King's College London, U.K.; Western Sydney University, Australia)
Software designer: Malgosia Askanas (Mind-Crafts)
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