Re: XPL Language

"Andy Johnson" <>
4 Aug 2000 15:57:10 -0400

          From comp.compilers

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From: "Andy Johnson" <>
Newsgroups: comp.compilers
Date: 4 Aug 2000 15:57:10 -0400
Organization: Compilers Central
References: 00-06-118 00-07-016 00-07-075
Keywords: history

"Paul Dineen" <> wrote in message
> Sander Vesik ( wrote:
>: Peter Flass <> wrote:
>: > A web site has been established for material related to the XPL
>: > programming language at:
>: >
>: > XPL, developed in the 1970's was one of the earliest "compiler
>: > compilers", was widely ported, and was the basis for a number of other
>: > languages such as the PL/M family.
> And HAL/S, used on the space shuttle.

... and still in use, I might add. Of course, in true XPL tradition,
the HAL/S compiler was written in XPL. It was also ported to several
target computers, all used by various NASA labs for their projects
(e.g. JPL used it for Galileo).

Unfortunately, XPL had a lot of 360isms (e.g. string descriptors which
used an 8 bit length and a 24 bit address in a 32 bit address word)
which did not port very well to modern 32 bit architectures, so while
retargeting the HAL/S compiler was relatively straightforward,
rehosting it was a nightmare.


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