Author Topic: The oldest code you have worked with  (Read 2510 times)

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Offline Mr. Beagle

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The oldest code you have worked with
« on: October 30, 2015, 11:21:21 AM »
I spent several long stretches in IT and CS jobs, and upon retirement, I have been reflecting on how much of the code of days past is gone forever. Several languages learned, now dead. I can only think of one product that has survived in terms of basic logic and function, albeit translated into new media.

So the question is what old code out there still survives either (a) virtually unchanged or (b) translated pretty much intact conceptually, but into new languages and formats?

My example of the latter is some software on which I still get consulting calls. My first job with this company in 1985 was to manage the conversion of the product from 40-column Apple II to 80-column PC-DOS Basic. Thirty years later, the underlying code and logic has evolved through Virtual Basic versions and then into (tenuous) Flash code running in a webpage, as part of a good-selling educational software package. The company doesn't want to spend the money to replace it, so they continue to patch. The software's Flash dependency may finally kill it, though, potentially getting my record up to 100%.

I can't think of much else from that era that survives. Any others? How many now-dead languages have you learned?
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Online superdave

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Re: The oldest code you have worked with
« Reply #1 on: October 30, 2015, 01:11:37 PM »
 :munch:
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Offline Skulker

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Re: The oldest code you have worked with
« Reply #2 on: October 30, 2015, 01:37:02 PM »
I'm already at 100%.  None of the old code and most of the programming languages I worked with  are extinct.
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Offline Friendly Angel

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Re: The oldest code you have worked with
« Reply #3 on: October 30, 2015, 02:08:18 PM »
Basic, Pascal, and Fortran... I'm not a coder, mostly this was just learning for learning's sake - required classes for engineering students in the 80s.  It used to be helpful knowing Fortran when I would have to debug a model or something, but not anymore.

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Offline Shibboleth

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Re: The oldest code you have worked with
« Reply #4 on: October 30, 2015, 02:12:44 PM »
We used to go in and mess with the code to Ultima 3 to make our character stupid powerful which was released in 1983. Somewhere around there is probably the oldest code that I have played around with.
common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools.

Online amysrevenge

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Re: The oldest code you have worked with
« Reply #5 on: October 30, 2015, 02:23:24 PM »
Did Fortran in my first attempt at engineering school.  1993 that was.

Only code I ever used outside the context of a code-learning exercise was MatLab.  Which is still going strong.
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Offline Henning

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Re: The oldest code you have worked with
« Reply #6 on: October 30, 2015, 02:27:12 PM »
What is the language on old Ti-83 graphing calculators?
Basic I think. It still had GOTO statements. This was around '95-96.
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Re: The oldest code you have worked with
« Reply #7 on: October 30, 2015, 02:29:40 PM »
Ah, nerds.  :-*
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Offline Ah.hell

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Re: The oldest code you have worked with
« Reply #8 on: October 30, 2015, 02:41:05 PM »
The 1997 Uniform Building Code. 

Offline Johnny Slick

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Re: The oldest code you have worked with
« Reply #9 on: October 30, 2015, 02:46:33 PM »
I haven't been coding long enough. :(
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Offline Belgarath

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Re: The oldest code you have worked with
« Reply #10 on: October 30, 2015, 03:46:30 PM »
Business Basic is about the oldest and I think it still survives in some niches.  I did do Pascal back in the day and the TRS-80 basic but I don't think either of those are still used
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Offline Alex Simmons

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Re: The oldest code you have worked with
« Reply #11 on: October 30, 2015, 08:57:02 PM »
Microsoft Excel Visual Basic and its macro predecessors. Been using it for what seems like forever.

I'm not a programmer (I'd like to be as I have stuff I'd love to create and take out of the Excel world it lives in) but I did a a job in 1978 for my Dad's accounting practice by programming a Burroughs C3660 programmable calculator so it could be used to do all his clients' tax accounting tabulations:
http://www.oldcalculatormuseum.com/bc3660.html

It used magnetic strip cards as memory storage medium onto which the software was saved and loaded.

Offline Mr. Beagle

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Re: The oldest code you have worked with
« Reply #12 on: October 30, 2015, 10:04:36 PM »
My first job was programming COBOL in 1972, but I was soon transferred to a team programming computer graphics in Fortran. The green, wire-frame rotating Death Star in the first Star Wars movie was the state-of-the-art at the time and how we programed parts and plant design in the auto industry. I still remember the matrix algebra required to do the rotations in a bad 3D.

My favorite dead (or near-dead) language was Forth, which ran on some early microprocessors, with the math all in Reverse Polish Notation. I sometimes still think of math problems that way.

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Offline Andrew Clunn

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Re: The oldest code you have worked with
« Reply #13 on: October 30, 2015, 11:44:04 PM »
I coded a desktop application to be sold, for a company in 2011... in Pascal.
I'm just the victim of my cognitive privilege

Offline teethering

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Re: The oldest code you have worked with
« Reply #14 on: October 31, 2015, 12:15:05 AM »
I can't remember what flavour of BASIC it was, but it was the kind where to edit the program you had to re-type the line with the line number to replace it and it ran on a mainframe in a huge room next to the room with the dumb terminals.

From what I was told to get the actual computer into the building they had to disassemble a part of the roof of the university and lower stuff in using a crane.  That may or may not be true.

 

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