[fpc-pascal] Re: Pascal is alive!!??

bisma at brawijaya.ac.id bisma at brawijaya.ac.id
Tue Feb 20 17:00:41 CET 2007

> Note that only the *requirement* to offer a Pascal environment has been 
> scrapped, organisers of contests can still provide it if they want. So, 
> please lobby at the contest organisation for a Pascal environment.

I did lobby them since the first time they had intention to drop pascal, but 
they simply didn't listen to me. :P The regular online contest still allows 
pascal though, they just don't want to see pascal on the final stage. 
Another thing that made me disappointed is they still use the old FPC 
v.1.0.6! They didn't care even when I told them to upgrade to FPC v.2.0.2 
(the last version available at the time). :( 

> The only fix here is to strengthen our position in education. Most people 
> today participate in Java, which is silly as it puts you in a clear 
> disadvantage. I once submitted the first non-Java implementation of a 
> problem after an hour into the contest. The reference implementation of 
> the jury took 10 minutes and 60 MB of memory. My Pascal implementation 
> gave the result instantly, while using 300 kilobytes of memory. The jury 
> was totally blown away; after the contest we did investigate and it 
> turned out that Pascal text I/O versus Java text I/O was 100% responsible 
> for the difference.

Absolutely correct! The funny thing is, most of top rank solutions are done 
using C or C++. Very little of them is using Java, but still they insist to 
allow Java! Pascal didn't do as much as C or C++ (yet) just because pascal 
isn't very popular in their community. But if we want to involve ourselves 
in, I believe pascal is able to beat C or C++, as some of my friends (from 
Indonesia) did it. 

> In short, Pascal still rocks in contests. One thing is very important: 
> a rock solid text mode IDE under both Windows and Linux. This makes a 
> difference in a contest. FPC has never been able to live up to the Turbo 
> Pascal level here. I'd say especially the IDE in Linux was only useable 
> for people knowledged with FPC to work around the limitations.

FPC text mode IDE is indeed very good and easy to use for common programming 
purposes, both on win32 console and linux terminal. I use it all the time 
when I code on remote servers. Of source you can't expect it to be as 
complete as or as easy as GUI IDE like Lazarus since it works on text mode, 
but it does the best thing it could for a text based IDE. 


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