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Introduction to Computing - David Evans

The first million years of hominid history produced tools to amplify, and later mechanize, our physical abilities to enable us to move faster, reach higher, and hit harder. We have developed tools that amplify physical force by the trillions and increase the speeds at which we can travel by the thousands.

Computing is the ultimate mental amplifier.

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Objective   10/11/2017

Computer Programming Languages documentation.

Programming Languages   10/11/2017

from Wikipedia

A programming language is a formal language that specifies a set of instructions that can be used to produce various kinds of output. Programming languages generally consist of instructions for a computer. Programming languages can be used to create programs that implement specific algorithms.

The earliest known programmable machine that preceded the invention of the digital computer was the automatic flute player described in the 9th century by the brothers Musa in Baghdad, during the Islamic Golden Age.[1] From the early 1800s, "programs" were used to direct the behavior of machines such as Jacquard looms and player pianos.[2] Thousands of different programming languages have been created, mainly in the computer field, and many more still are being created every year. Many programming languages require computation to be specified in an imperative form (i.e., as a sequence of operations to perform) while other languages use other forms of program specification such as the declarative form (i.e. the desired result is specified, not how to achieve it).

The description of a programming language is usually split into the two components of syntax (form) and semantics (meaning). Some languages are defined by a specification document (for example, the C programming language is specified by an ISO Standard) while other languages (such as Perl) have a dominant implementation that is treated as a reference. Some languages have both, with the basic language defined by a standard and extensions taken from the dominant implementation being common.


Assembler   10/11/2017

from Wikipedia    Introduction to Assembly Programming Language

An assembly (or assembler) language,[1] often abbreviated asm, is a low-level programming language for a computer, or other programmable device, in which there is a very strong (but often not one-to-one) correspondence between the language and the architecture's machine code instructions. Each assembly language is specific to a particular computer architecture. In contrast, most high-level programming languages are generally portable across multiple architectures but require interpreting or compiling. Assembly language may also be called symbolic machine code.[2]

Assembly language is converted into executable machine code by a utility program referred to as an assembler. The conversion process is referred to as assembly, or assembling the source code. Assembly time is the computational step where an assembler is run.

Assembly language uses a mnemonic to represent each low-level machine instruction or opcode, typically also each architectural register, flag, etc. Many operations require one or more operands in order to form a complete instruction and most assemblers can take expressions of numbers and named constants as well as registers and labels as operands, freeing the programmer from tedious repetitive calculations. Depending on the architecture, these elements may also be combined for specific instructions or addressing modes using offsets or other data as well as fixed addresses. Many assemblers offer additional mechanisms to facilitate program development, to control the assembly process, and to aid debugging.

BASIC    Beginner's All-Purpose Symbolic Instruction Code  10/11/2017

from Wikipedia    Learning BASIC Programming

BASIC (an acronym for Beginner's All-purpose Symbolic Instruction Code)[1] is a family of general-purpose, high-level programming languages whose design philosophy emphasizes ease of use. In 1964, John G. Kemeny and Thomas E. Kurtz designed the original BASIC language at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire, United States. They wanted to enable students in fields other than science and mathematics to use computers. At the time, nearly all use of computers required writing custom software, which was something only scientists and mathematicians tended to learn.[citation needed]

Versions of BASIC became widespread on microcomputers in the mid-1970s and 1980s. Microcomputers usually shipped with BASIC, often in the machine's firmware. Having an easy-to-learn language on these early personal computers allowed small business owners, professionals, hobbyists, and consultants to develop custom software on computers they could afford.[original research?] In the 2010s, BASIC was popular in many computing dialects and in new languages influenced by BASIC, such as Microsoft's Visual Basic.

C     studied in 1989  10/11/2017

from Wikipedia
Introduction to Computer Science for Everyone

The C Programming Language (sometimes termed K&R, after its authors' initials) is a computer programming book written by Brian Kernighan and Dennis Ritchie, the latter of whom originally designed and implemented the language, as well as co-designed the Unix operating system with which development of the language was closely intertwined. The book was central to the development and popularization of the C programming language and is still widely read and used today. Because the book was co-authored by the original language designer, and because the first edition of the book served for many years as the de facto standard for the language, the book was regarded by many to be the authoritative reference on C.[1][2]

FORTRAN    my first computer language 1970's  10/11/2017

from Wikipedia    Introduction To Fortran

Fortran (formerly FORTRAN, derived from "Formula Translation"[2]) is a general-purpose, imperative programming language that is especially suited to numeric computation and scientific computing. Originally developed by IBM[3] in the 1950s for scientific and engineering applications, Fortran came to dominate this area of programming early on and has been in continuous use for over half a century in computationally intensive areas such as numerical weather prediction, finite element analysis, computational fluid dynamics, computational physics, crystallography and computational chemistry. It is a popular language for high-performance computing[4] and is used for programs that benchmark and rank the world's fastest supercomputers.[5]

Fortran encompasses a lineage of versions, each of which evolved to add extensions to the language while usually retaining compatibility with prior versions. Successive versions have added support for structured programming and processing of character-based data (FORTRAN 77), array programming, modular programming and generic programming (Fortran 90), high performance Fortran (Fortran 95), object-oriented programming (Fortran 2003) and concurrent programming (Fortran 2008).

Java   10/11/2017

from Wikipedia   Java.net   Java.com
Java Programming   Wikibooks

Java is a general-purpose computer programming language that is concurrent, class-based, object-oriented,[15] and specifically designed to have as few implementation dependencies as possible. It is intended to let application developers "write once, run anywhere" (WORA),[16] meaning that compiled Java code can run on all platforms that support Java without the need for recompilation.[17] Java applications are typically compiled to bytecode that can run on any Java virtual machine (JVM) regardless of computer architecture. As of 2016, Java is one of the most popular programming languages in use,[18][19][20][21] particularly for client-server web applications, with a reported 9 million developers.[22] Java was originally developed by James Gosling at Sun Microsystems (which has since been acquired by Oracle Corporation) and released in 1995 as a core component of Sun Microsystems' Java platform. The language derives much of its syntax from C and C++, but it has fewer low-level facilities than either of them.

The original and reference implementation Java compilers, virtual machines, and class libraries were originally released by Sun under proprietary licenses. As of May 2007, in compliance with the specifications of the Java Community Process, Sun relicensed most of its Java technologies under the GNU General Public License. Others have also developed alternative implementations of these Sun technologies, such as the GNU Compiler for Java (bytecode compiler), GNU Classpath (standard libraries), and IcedTea-Web (browser plugin for applets).

The latest version is Java 9, released on September 21, 2017,[23] and is one of the two versions currently supported for free by Oracle. Versions earlier than Java 8 are supported both by Oracle and other companies on a commercial basis.

Postscript   10/11/2017

from Wikipedia
Programming in PostScript

PostScript (PS) is a page description language in the electronic publishing and desktop publishing business. It is a dynamically typed, concatenative programming language and was created at Adobe Systems by John Warnock, Charles Geschke, Doug Brotz, Ed Taft and Bill Paxton from 1982 to 1984.
History

The concepts of the PostScript language were seeded in 1976 when John Warnock was working at Evans & Sutherland, a computer graphics company. At that time John Warnock was developing an interpreter for a large three-dimensional graphics database of New York harbor. Warnock conceived the Design System language to process the graphics.

Concurrently, researchers at Xerox PARC had developed the first laser printer and had recognized the need for a standard means of defining page images. In 1975-76 Bob Sproull and William Newman developed the Press format, which was eventually used in the Xerox Star system to drive laser printers. But Press, a data format rather than a language, lacked flexibility, and PARC mounted the Interpress effort to create a successor.

In 1978 Warnock left Evans & Sutherland and joined Xerox PARC to work with Martin Newell. They rewrote Design System to create the interpretive language, J & M or JaM[1] (for "John and Martin") which was used for VLSI design and the investigation of type and graphics printing. This work later evolved and expanded into the Interpress language.

Warnock left with Chuck Geschke and founded Adobe Systems in December 1982. They, together with Doug Brotz, Ed Taft and Bill Paxton created a simpler language, similar to Interpress, called PostScript, which went on the market in 1984. At about this time they were visited by Steve Jobs, who urged them to adapt PostScript to be used as the language for driving laser printers.

In March 1985, the Apple LaserWriter was the first printer to ship with PostScript, sparking the desktop publishing (DTP) revolution in the mid-1980s. The combination of technical merits and widespread availability made PostScript a language of choice for graphical output for printing applications. For a time an interpreter (sometimes referred to as a RIP for Raster Image Processor) for the PostScript language was a common component of laser printers, into the 1990s.

However, the cost of implementation was high; computers output raw PS code that would be interpreted by the printer into a raster image at the printer's natural resolution. This required high performance microprocessors and ample memory. The LaserWriter used a 12 MHz Motorola 68000, making it faster than any of the Macintosh computers to which it attached. When the laser printer engines themselves cost over a thousand dollars the added cost of PS was marginal. But as printer mechanisms fell in price, the cost of implementing PS became too great a fraction of overall printer cost; in addition, with desktop computers becoming more powerful, it no longer made sense to offload the rasterisation work onto the resource-constrained printer. By 2001, few lower-end printer models came with support for PostScript, largely due to growing competition from much cheaper non-PostScript ink jet printers, and new software-based methods to render PostScript images on the computer, making them suitable for any printer; PDF, a descendant of PostScript, provides one such method, and has largely replaced PostScript as de facto standard for electronic document distribution.

On high-end printers, PostScript processors remain common, and their use can dramatically reduce the CPU work involved in printing documents, transferring the work of rendering PostScript images from the computer to the printer.

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