[fpc-devel] Pascal Standard, and what we can do.
jonas.maebe at elis.ugent.be
Sun Jul 19 11:03:45 CEST 2015
> Just like ECMAScript,
> C++, PHP, most languages now have a 'standards' document behind it.
> That's their *roadmap*. Their *leadership*. Design it and the
> *community* will show *support*.
ISO Pascal and ISO Extended Pascal were like that in the early 90s:
1) there was an official ISO standard and standards committee for it
2) there were a number commercial compilers supporting it such as HP
Pascal and IBM's compiler for its System/370
3) later on (in 1996) a GCC-based implementation arrived for it (the
equivalent of the LLVM of the moment)
And still almost no one uses ISO/Extended Pascal anymore. Why? Possibly
because the de facto Pascal standards had already become Think Pascal on
the Mac and Turbo Pascal on the PC by then, and none of those
programmers wanted to rewrite all of their code (although Think Pascal
was a bit closer to ISO Pascal). Or maybe because in general, many
people just preferred those language dialects for one reason or another.
In any case, introducing one new standard to rule them all seldom (if
ever) works (and you can bet someone will be unable to resist to add a
link to the related xkcd comic).
Standards do not magically make a language more popular. They only work
if they follow from a desire of an entire community to design one and to
adhere to it. "Design it and the community will show support" is exactly
the opposite of what happens in practice.
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