Thursday, May 7, 2015

Episode 42: Fortran

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Introduction: Strong/Weak Typing & https://www.destroyallsoftware.com/talks/wat

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Fortran

  • Overview
    • ForTran: Formula Translating System
    • First optimizing compiler
  • History
    • First version designed by John W. Backus in 1953
      • “20x fewer instructions than assembly”
      • Writing programs for computing missile trajectories
    • Punch-cards
    • Mainframes
    • Fortran still in use today
      • Parts of scipy/matlab are in fortran
      • LAPACK still in fortran
  • Compilers
    • G95
    • GNU GFortran
  • Pros
    • Stickiness
    • Punchcards!
    • FREQUENCY directive: compiler performed a monte carlo simulation to place blocks
  • Cons
    • Pareto-dominated by more advanced languages