TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Apr 93 Letters
Volume Number:9
Issue Number:4
Column Tag:Dialogue Box

Dialogue Box

By Neil Ticktin, Editor-in-Chief

I Like humor, Too

I am writting in response to a comment in the "dialog box" of the January issue regarding the lighter side. - the writer said to drop it.

I think that you should keep it. Humor is a good thing.

Also, what are the odds of you maintaining your own BBS for developers? This would be highly useful to allow subscribers to call up and ask questions or download specific code fragments from various issues (the cd-rom would be cheaper if you wanted everything). I would enjoy being able to contact other developers and ask questions that are not being responded to on Developer Talk in AppleLink.

Thanks for the great magazine.

- Robert J. Sanford, Jr.

Future Soft Engineering

[Robert, we will not be running our own BBS for now. We are setting up areas on CompuServe, AOL and AppleLink. Those areas should all be up and running by the time you read this. If you have problems, e-mail us for more information. Our most current e-mail addresses are on page two of this issue. - Ed.]

C or Pascal

I know you've been wanting input from readers, and I've been meaning to write, but it took Dave Mark's September column to prompt me to do it.

I probably should have realized that, with a title like "C or Pascal, Which is the Best Language?", I shouldn't have read any further. But curiosity got the better of me. You see, I have wondered for many years just what causes fanatic C fans to be fanatic.

Mark gives us the same tired, religious, non-sense that every one of the fanatics uses. C offers notational flexibility. C is compact. C is powerful. Pascal is a Volvo?! C will really let you fly! Give me a break!

I defy Mark to show me THINK C code that performs some powerful action that THINK Pascal code cannot (and in a more user/programmer-friendly fashion, that's why we use Macs isn't it?). Where is the power in a language used for an annual contest to see who can write the most convoluted code (BYTE Magazine)?

The point behind programming is to produce correct software. The fastest, most powerful, flexible, compact code is useless if it's not correct. Computer Science has spent more than 3 decades moving further away from the computer by adding layers of abstraction which increase programmer accuracy and efficiency. That's why we don't program using ones and zeros, despite the fact that there is unlimited power there. That's why the U.S. Government and military, as well as the commercial aviation industry, have moved in the opposite direction, by standardizing on Ada (which is based on Pascal syntax).

If support is what you want, you should be using and programming MS-DOS. Does support or popularity make something the right tool for the job? Isn't the best language the right one for the job? Don't programmers deserve the same ease of use we provide for our users?

I want my compiler to spot my mistakes as soon as I make them, not after I spend three hours tracing through the code. THINK Pascal does that. And despite the latest improvements, the THINK Pascal environment is still superior to THINK C in terms of editing, debugging, and navigating through your source code.

All of this is irrelevant, though, because the best language is the one that gets the job done for you. And Dave, I really did enjoy the rest of your article, particularly the stuff on data representations and parameter passing in C and Pascal. And congratulations on your new addition to the family.

Getting off my soapbox, I'm glad to have MacTutor back and, apparently, growing again. While I agree that spending 1/4 the magazine on a LISP example is probably too much, my vote is not to reduce your coverage of FORTRAN, Lisp, BASIC, <insert your favorite way to teach your computer here>, what-have-you. I would hate to see such a great programming resource turn into some kind of clique for the gang with the most popular language.

- Michael Gibbs, Surpise, Arizona

[We have no intention of making MT a single language journal. As far as C vs. Pascal, the best language is the one that gets the job done for you. The industry is standardizing on C, but that doesn't mean that you have to. Anyone have any other comments for Michael? - Ed.]

 

Community Search:
MacTech Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

Is there cross-platform play in slither....
So you've sunken plenty of hours into crawling around in slither.io on your iPhone or iPad. You've got your stories of tragedy and triumph, the times you coiled four snakes at one time balanced out by the others when you had a length of more than... | Read more »
Rodeo Stampede guide to running a better...
In Rodeo Stampede, honing your skills so you can jump from animal to animal and outrun the herd as long as possible is only half the fun. Once you've tamed a few animals, you can bring them home with you. [Read more] | Read more »
VoxSyn (Music)
VoxSyn 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Music Price: $6.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: VoxSyn turns your voice into the most flexible vocal sound generator ever. Instantly following even subtle modulations of pitch and... | Read more »
Catch Battleplans on Google Play from Ju...
Real-time strategy title Battleplans is due for release on Google Play on June 30th, following its release for iOS systems last month. With its simple interface and pretty graphics, the crowd-pleaser brings a formerly overlooked genre out for the... | Read more »
iDoyle: The interactive Adventures of Sh...
iDoyle: The interactive Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - A Scandal in Bohemia 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Books Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Special Release Price $1.99 (Normally $3.99) | Read more »
Five popular free apps to help you slim...
Thanks to retail and advertising, we're used to thinking one season ahead. Here we are just a week into the summer and we're conditioned to start thinking about the fall. [Read more] | Read more »
How to ride longer and tame more animals...
It's hard to accurately describe Rodeo Stampede to people who haven't seen it yet. It's like if someone took Crossy Roadand Disco Zoo and put them in a blender, yet with a unique game mechanic that's still simple and fun for anyone. [Read more] | Read more »
Teeny Titans - A Teen Titans Go! Figure...
Teeny Titans - A Teen Titans Go! Figure Battling Game 1.0.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $3.99, Version: 1.0.0 (iTunes) Description: Teeny Titans, GO! Join Robin for a figure battling RPG of epic proportions! TEENY... | Read more »
NinjAwesome: Tips and tricks to be a mor...
Sorry about that headline, but I'm going to go ahead and assume that GameResort would not have named its game NinjAwesome without expecting some of that. It is, in fact, pretty awesome the way it combines an endless runner and old school arcade... | Read more »
Into Mirror (Games)
Into Mirror 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: "Is all that we see or seem, but a dream within a dream?"- Edgar Allan Poe New game by Lemon Jam Studio, the team behind Pursuit... | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

15-inch Retina MacBook Pros on sale for $200-...
B&H Photo has 15″ Retina MacBook Pros on sale for up to $210 off MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY tax only: - 15″ 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pro: $1799.99 $200 off MSRP - 15″ 2.5GHz... Read more
Mac minis on sale for up to $100 off MSRP
B&H Photo has Mac minis on sale for up to $100 off MSRP including free shipping plus NY sales tax only: - 1.4GHz Mac mini: $449 $50 off MSRP - 2.6GHz Mac mini: $649 $50 off MSRP - 2.8GHz Mac mini... Read more
Clearance 2015 13-inch MacBook Airs available...
B&H Photo has clearance 2015 13″ MacBook Airs available for $300 off original MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only: - 13″ 1.6GHz/4GB/128GB MacBook Air (MJVE2LL/A): $799.... Read more
Apple refurbished Mac minis available for up...
Apple has Certified Refurbished Mac minis available starting at $419. Apple’s one-year warranty is included with each mini, and shipping is free: - 1.4GHz Mac mini: $419 $80 off MSRP - 2.6GHz Mac... Read more
ABBYY TextGrabber: 1,000,000 Installs in 5 Da...
ABBYY, an international OCR technologies provider, has announced that their image-to-text application TextGrabber, got installed 1,000,000 times in just five days while being featured by the App... Read more
New SkinIt Waterproof Case For iPhone 6
With its impact and waterproof design, the Skinit Waterproof case provides security and protection to guarantee your phone will get you through even the most demanding outdoor conditions. The impact-... Read more
iMacs on sale for up to $150 off MSRP
B&H Photo has 21″ and 27″ iMacs on sale for up to $150 off MSRP including free shipping plus NY sales tax only: - 27″ 3.3GHz iMac 5K: $2181.11 $118 off MSRP - 27″ 3.2GHz/1TB Fusion iMac 5K: $1949... Read more
12-inch 1.1GHz Retina MacBooks on sale for $5...
B&H Photo has 2016 12″ 1.1GHz/256GB Retina MacBooks on sale for up to $50 off MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY tax only: - 12″ 1.1GHz Space Gray Retina MacBook: $1249 $50 off MSRP... Read more
WWDC Announcements Revisited Still Underwhelm...
I was disappointed that no new MacBook hardware was announced at this year’s all-software World Wide Developer’s Conference. Not even a hint about what’s in the development pipeline. Of course, we... Read more
Twelve South Compass 2 iPad Stand Now Availab...
Twelve South has updated its most popular iPad stand, Compass 2, with the introduction of two new colors — Gold and Rose Gold. These new color options n perfectly complement the new Rose Gold iPad... Read more

Jobs Board

Music Marketing Lead, iTunes & *Apple*...
…Music Marketing Lead is responsible for developing robust marketing campaigns and programs for Apple Music and iTunes across the whole of Apple ecosystem. This Read more
*Apple* Valley Medical Clinic is Hiring - AP...
Apple Valley Medical Clinic is Hiring! Apple Valley Medical Clinic is an independently owned practice operating a Family Medicine Clinic, a 24/7 Urgent Care, Read more
*Apple* New Products Testers Needed - Apple...
…we therefore look forward to put out products to quality test for durability. Apple leads the digital music revolution with its iPods and iTunes online store, Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant - APPLE (United...
Job Summary As an Apple Solutions Consultant, you'll be the link between our future customers and our products. You'll showcase your entrepreneurial spirit as you Read more
*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions - Apple,...
Job Description: Sales Specialist - Retail Customer Service and Sales Transform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.