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[personal profile] krpalmer
In noticing comments about the fiftieth anniversary of the computer language BASIC, I decided I could skip the day of the official commemorations and wait until the day recorded as the one the first programs in it were run (at four in the morning) to set down a thought or two of my own.

The home computers of my family defaulted to BASIC interpreters on startup, and I even made stabs at working through their tutorial books every so often even if I always seemed to lose interest in them before getting to their ends. The most complex program I can remember trying to write was a sort of computerized "Choose Your Own Adventure," and I didn't get very far in it either, but it does seem the line-number syntax wound up sticking in my mind. In high school I learned a bit of C and in university I indulged myself with a course in digital electronics that had me programming a 6800-series microprocessor in assembly language, but I can't remember anything of those languages right now.

BASIC interpreters, of course, were written in assembly language or something equally complex and low-level themselves. Keeping that in mind keeps me aware I can't really count myself as someone who managed to "move on" (even if that was just a matter of scraping bad programming habits out of the mind). However, there is something a bit fun about making the effort to solve even the simplest of problems.

10 LET A=-1
20 FOR Y=1964 TO 2014
30 A=A+1
40 PRINT Y,
50 NEXT Y
60 PRINT
70 PRINT "HAPPY";A;"TH ANNIVERSARY!"


 photo basic50_zpsc4833cc6.png
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