[time-nuts] P word in my mails
djl at montana.com
Thu Apr 2 17:52:05 UTC 2009
Lovely, Steve. Many many years ago, I started a meme around that computer
languages reflect the culture of their originators; finally saw it appear in
Byte after 7-10 years. Won't bore the list, but note that Nicklaus Wirth (P)
is a German Swiss. He also named the computer he had built that used P as
its operating system Lilith, the wife of Satan (true!). Then Western
Digital put out a chipset computer that had P as its native tounge. Got the
chipset, never built the computer. I preferred Chuck Peddle's Basic machine
----- Original Message -----
From: "Steve Rooke" <sar10538 at gmail.com>
To: "Discussion of precise time and frequency measurement"
<time-nuts at febo.com>
Sent: Thursday, April 02, 2009 3:10 AM
Subject: Re: [time-nuts] P word in my mails
> Dear Ulrich,
> After writhing around on the floor for some time, with my sides
> splitting, I have managed to stop laughing, hopefully, long enough to
> reply to your post. The P word in question is, as already pointed out,
> PASCAL (hack, spit). To my understanding, almost universally loathed
> throughout the coding community, and which, I thought, was put to rest
> many moons ago, much to the relief of the programming community.
> Now I have gone to the vault and dusted off the copy of The Historium
> Evilis Computium which I keep wrapped in a black silk scarf and locked
> in a lead lined container. It always gives me shivers whenever I open
> this book and it takes some while to get back into a decent sleep
> pattern after each reading. Searching through the book, I find many
> sections referring to the M word, the I word, the BG words, and that's
> not to forget the GOTO word. I went past the sections printed in
> special ink where the text can only be read by those who are pure of
> heart, as it is a protection against the evil IT masters who would
> send their vile lawyers to suppress this work, until I came upon this
> ancient writing which I reproduce below.
> WARNING: if you are of a nervous disposition, or suffer from heart
> problems, I urge to to delete this message immediately and wipe the
> free-space on your hard drive with a 35 pass Gutmann method.
> And it came to pass that the Dark One was troubled.
> Mankind had discovered this mighty power they called computing
> And this made the Dark One angy.
> He ruminated for many days and nights until he came to a solution.
> He would create something so grave, so terrible, it would make mankind
> think of IT as Instant Terror.
> And the vile thing would dumbfound the masses with it's heavily typed
> It's unwillingness to perform functions with mixed types
> And it's difficulty of getting anything useful through the compiler.
> But mankind would see it as a wondrous system, so neat, so clean,
> producing nothing but goodness.
> With a wave of his hands, out of his ASR-33 there spat the most vile,
> the most evil of all things.
> And the thing was called PASCAL!
> And the Dark One roared with a laughter that would be heard from all
> And the P thing was sent down to the educational establishments
> And darkness came over the computing land
> And the comp science students were forced to use it.
> It was pitiful to hear their cries as they flagellated themselves when
> they coded
> For it was only the pain that could keep them sane
> But many failed and were dragged off to the asylums screaming.
> Infrequently there would be a cry of "I finally got it past the compiler!"
> And the students would rejoiced as they carried the victor at shoulder
> height all around.
> And there rose up others who challenged the P thing
> And they created new programming languages
> And their resistance drove out the P thing
> Expunging it from mankind.
> It still lurked in some places but it's hold on mankind was broken.
> And programmers throughout the whole of mankind rejoiced
> And the dark clouds that covered IT dispersed.
> But there was no real rejoicing in the end as all that used the P
> thing succumbed to its vile purpose.
> And in later years, those that had survived were a pitiful sight
> Oft-times found in dark corners, chanting, monotonously,
> "I must not mix types, I must not mix types, I must..."
> For hours on end, it was a sorrowful sight.
> And it was said that the Dark One was displeased
> His plan to destroy the will of mankind was thwarted
> But only for the moment
> For he was already working on his next evil plan
> And it came to pass that he came down onto the World
> And he took on a human guise
> And he created an evil empire...
> This is all I am prepared to transcribe from the book for fear that
> even worse things will happen. I will have to get my whip from the
> vault and flagellate myself for hours to get this P thing out of my
> mind and try to keep myself sane, such is the power of this evil
> That's all folks!!!
> 73, Steve
> 2009/4/2 Ulrich Bangert <df6jb at ulrich-bangert.de>:
>> after I read your mail I have been completely perplexed because I could
>> no stretch of imagination detect where you had found the aforesaid P word
>> my mail. It needed the help of some English speaking friends and a search
>> my last mails to find out that I have (possibly over a range of more than
>> years) used an American 5 letter word in another sense than most/all of
>> seem to interprete it.
>> I HAVE seen the aforesaid word on some doors during my visits to he
>> States and I HAVE understood the meaning of the word in this context. But
>> swear that I have not been aware of the fact that the aforesaid word is
>> EXCLUSIVELY for the location behind these doors. If I had been aware of
>> I would have never used this word in a conversation because that is
>> not my style.
>> Instead, I have been believing (and I swear this is the truth) that the
>> aforesaid word is used by a gentlemen to address a group of other
>> just as a "Hi folks" among noble people but avoiding the highly offical
>> salutation "Gentlemen", in a sense a laid-back use of "Gentlemen".
>> Clearly this is a mistake of mine that I cannot other than to apologize
>> If anyone of you has felt offended or in any other way been affected by
>> wrong use of this word: Sorry for that, that was NOT my intention in
>> this term. I have started a lot of my posts to this group with this word
>> because of the high s/n ratio to be found here and the extremely well
>> educated people in the group that I hold in high regard.
>> Someone should have told me before! If you find this word in one of my
>> earlier posts substitute it with "Gentlemen" because that is what was
>> Thank you Steve for pointing at that. If you had not done it I would
>> propably have used the word in a wrong sense for the rest of my life.
>> Best regards
>> Ulrich Bangert
>>> -----Ursprüngliche Nachricht-----
>>> Von: time-nuts-bounces at febo.com
>>> [mailto:time-nuts-bounces at febo.com] Im Auftrag von Steve Rooke
>>> Gesendet: Mittwoch, 1. April 2009 11:57
>>> An: Discussion of precise time and frequency measurement
>>> Betreff: Re: [time-nuts] Prologix
>>> This man said the P word without any form of apology :-)
>>> 2009/4/1 Ulrich Bangert <df6jb at ulrich-bangert.de>:
>>> > Mike,
>>> > I would like to second Brent's information: That is exactly
>>> how it is
>>> > done. Talking to the Prologix interface and talking to the NI
>>> > interface is COMPLETELY different in that talking to the Prologix
>>> > always means straightforward serial communication while
>>> talking to the
>>> > NI involves DLL-calls from the application.
>>> > The Prologix is cheap and easy to work with, thats why some
>>> time nuts
>>> > use it. The NI interface is on the other hand more
>>> expensive and more
>>> > complex to handle (and yes, it does some things that are not easily
>>> > done with the Prologix). The biggest advantage of the DLL-calls is:
>>> > The same application works with whatever NI interface you
>>> use: Plug in
>>> > card, USB devices, ethernet dvices, you name it. All work
>>> by the SAME
>>> > dll calls, so your application is not specific for a
>>> interface device.
>>> > I do not forget to advertise my own solution to GPIB
>>> programming named
>>> > EZGPIB which talks to Prologix (both LAN and USB based) as
>>> well to NI
>>> > interfaces and thanks supporting basic VISA even to GPIB
>>> interfaces of
>>> > other suppliers.
>>> > It uses an easy to learn PASCAL like script language that
>>> your friend
>>> > might get used to in a snap. Basically, if your friend
>>> writes a EZGPIB
>>> > based script to talk to his counter over the Prologix, you will be
>>> > able to use the SAME script to talk to your 5335A via a NI
>>> > Nice feature? EZGPIB has got mentioned in April's 2008
>>> issue of "Test
>>> > & Measurement World". See the last link on my "About me" page
>>> > http://www.ulrich-bangert.de/html/about_me.html
>>> > EZGIPB can be downloaded for free from
>>> > http://www.ulrich-bangert.de/html/downloads.html
>>> > Best regards
>>> > Ulrich, DF6JB
>>> >> -----Ursprungliche Nachricht-----
>>> >> Von: time-nuts-bounces at febo.com
>>> [mailto:time-nuts-bounces at febo.com]
>>> >> Im Auftrag von Brent Gordon
>>> >> Gesendet: Dienstag, 31. Marz 2009 20:07
>>> >> An: Discussion of precise time and frequency measurement
>>> >> Betreff: Re: [time-nuts] Prologix
>>> >> Mike Feher wrote:
>>> >> > A friend has a 5335A counter and bought a Prologix adaptor
>>> >> for it to
>>> >> > collect data. He wrote the software and has had extremely good
>>> >> > results. He offered to do the same for me utilizing my NI
>>> >> adaptor so I
>>> >> > could use it for my various counters. Unfortunately he ran into
>>> >> > problems and feels he needs a special version of basic
>>> in order to
>>> >> > make my $500 NI adaptor work. I admit to my total lack of
>>> >> programming
>>> >> > ability. I still use GWBASIC, and only to crunch heavy
>>> >> numbers. I have
>>> >> > no idea how to interface any software to communicate with an
>>> >> > instrument, and, maybe am too old to want to learn as it
>>> >> seems a lot
>>> >> > of people do it on a regular basis already. If this becomes too
>>> >> > difficult I may have to buy a Prologix unit from Abdul.
>>> >> While I am all
>>> >> > for doing that, and I bought my NI before Abdul had his
>>> >> version going,
>>> >> > I was also under the impression that if the Prologix can do
>>> >> it the NI
>>> >> > can do it, but, not necessarily the other way around. My friend
>>> >> > mentioned API calls, whatever they are. Any suggestions?
>>> >> Thanks - Mike
>>> >> >
>>> >> >
>>> >> > Mike B. Feher, N4FS
>>> >> > 89 Arnold Blvd.
>>> >> > Howell, NJ, 07731
>>> >> > 732-886-5960
>>> >> >
>>> >> Mike,
>>> >> You should have gotten the NI-488.2 CD with your GPIB
>>> card. On that
>>> >> CD are the dlls (Dynamic Link Libraries) to talk to the card.
>>> >> You can use
>>> >> the dlls in any language that supports dlls or ActiveX.
>>> >> Sorry to say,
>>> >> GWBASIC is not one of those languages. Visual Basic 6
>>> works well and
>>> >> I've even done GPIB data acquisition directly into Excel using VBA
>>> >> (Visual Basic for Applications, Excel's macro language). VBA
>>> >> is part of
>>> >> Excel. Alternatively, you can get a free Visual Basic Express at
>>> >> http://www.microsoft.com/express/vb/ I haven't tried VB
>>> >> Express, but I
>>> >> think it will work. Normally, I do all my GPIB programming
>>> >> in LabVIEW.
>>> >> Brent
>>> >> _______________________________________________
>>> >> time-nuts mailing list -- time-nuts at febo.com
>>> >> To unsubscribe, go to
>>> >> https://www.febo.com/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/time-nuts
>>> >> and follow the instructions there.
>>> > _______________________________________________
>>> > time-nuts mailing list -- time-nuts at febo.com
>>> > To unsubscribe, go to
>>> > https://www.febo.com/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/time-nuts
>>> > and follow the instructions there.
>>> Steve Rooke - ZL3TUV & G8KVD & JAKDTTNW
>>> Omnium finis imminet
>>> time-nuts mailing list -- time-nuts at febo.com
>>> To unsubscribe, go to
>>> and follow the instructions there.
>> time-nuts mailing list -- time-nuts at febo.com
>> To unsubscribe, go to
>> and follow the instructions there.
> Steve Rooke - ZL3TUV & G8KVD & JAKDTTNW
> Omnium finis imminet
> time-nuts mailing list -- time-nuts at febo.com
> To unsubscribe, go to
> and follow the instructions there.
More information about the time-nuts